By Circles Robinson
HAVANA TIMES, Oct. l3 – Antonio Guerrero, one of the Cuban Five, detained under unclear circumstances back in l998 and imprisoned ever since in the United States, had his sentence reduced Tuesday from life imprisonment to 22 years, reported AFP.
Guerrero, 50, received a life sentence at the politically charged trial that took place in 2001 in hostile Miami. He was accused, as the others, of conspiring to commit espionage, among a host of offenses that were never proven.
The defendants’ attorneys were unable to see the supposed evidence of their client’s guilt, with the US prosecutor evoking national security at each turn of the process and the court going along with the maneuver.
Two other Cuban Five members, Ramon Labañino (life) and Fernando Gonzalez (l9 years) will be re-sentenced in the near future.
The sentences of Rene Gonzalez (l5 years) and Gerardo Hernandez (double life imprisonment) are not up for review.
The Cuban Five are considered heroes back home for having worked to uncover terrorist plots from Miami based exile groups with a long history of violence against the island. Their faces are present on billboards and posters throughout the country and they are referred to on a first name basis by adults and children alike.
Cuban President Raul Castro and Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez have stated that a significant normalization of US-Cuba relations cannot occur with the Cuban Five in prison.
The sentence reduction for Antonio Guerrero opens speculation to what will occur in the re-sentencing of Fernando Gonzalez who has already served over 11 of his 19-year term, also declared overly harsh -like the case of Guerrero- by a federal court.
For a full look at the Cuban Five case and the issues involved see: Cuban Five: Wrong Guys in Jail