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They Steal Cows From a Commander of the Revolution

May 23, 2012 Leave a comment

Yaremis Flores

Last Saturday, May 5, in the nighttime hours, at least three cows were taken from a farm belonging to Commander Guillermo Garcia Frias, located southeast of the capital.  At dawn the next day, three patrol cars and two Forensic Medicine vehicles were observed.

The non-commissioned officer Alexander Borrero, one of those charged with the investigation, exclaimed, “The people do not learn, they dare to steal from a Commander.”  The investigators took pictures and videos of the place.  They also gathered statements from some neighbors.

Although some farmers in the community have reported the theft of their animals — a frequently-occurring crime in the area — the police have paid no attention.  “Last Monday, May 7, they took one of my horses; I told the police unit, and I am still awaiting the investigation,” said Alfonso Chaviano, better known as Chichi, who added that a horse on the island can reach a value greater than $1000 US.

The cooperative Fernando Garcia Rosales, with more than 400 hectares, belongs to the National Company for the Protection of Flora and Fauna, directed by Garcia Frias.  Located in Murgas, a rural neighborhood of the Municipality Boyeros, it counts on all kinds of resources.  It is dedicated to some crops, among them sugar cane and moringa, but its basic work is cattle raising.

Osiris, one of the inhabitants of the place, who asked that his last name not be published, spoke two months ago with Miguel Vale, administrator of the farm.  “He gave me a lift in his own Willy jeep, identified himself, and bragged about his constant travels to Mexico and Brazil for the purpose of buying heads of pure bred cattle.”

Cuban citizens have no possibility of controlling the profitability or lack thereof of the country’s investments.  Much less of deciding the fate of this farm’s production, when it operates with the approval of Fidel Castro, the Cuban ex-leader, who visited the property last January.

In keeping with worldwide farming statistics, average cattle prices at auction fluctuate above $1,300 US.  According to the non-commissioned officer Borrero, the head of cattle were pure-bred specimens and weighed between 350 and 450 kilos.  Up to now, they have not detained any suspect.

Translated by mlk

May 23 2012

Without Justice and Without Rights

May 22, 2012 Leave a comment

Yaremis Flores

The Havana capital will welcome the sessions of the Sixth International Meeting of Justice and Law in the Conventions Palace the next 23rd to 25th of May. More than 500 delegates will meet; of those, 300 are foreign jurists from 14 nations.

Among the prioritized themes to be discussed are found access to justice on the island, the re-education work in Cuban prisons and criminal due process, according to the note published on the website www.gpalco.com.  As with earlier editions, there will be an official presentation about the case of the five Cubans sentenced in the United States for spying for the Cuban government.

Ruben Remigio, president of the Supreme Tribunal, sponsor of the event, said in a press conference offered last Thursday, that the meeting will permit Cuba to show the advances in its judicial plan, in the process of procedures and the transparency of the administration of justice.

“The meeting will be a ’sounding board’ to present a counteroffensive against the orchestrated campaigns for the major press, that tries to discredit Cuba and silence its achievements in the administration of justice,” added the jurist.

Remigio boasted of the victories of the Cuban Revolution in justice as “favoring the exchange of experiences among different judicial operators.”  Nevertheless, not all jurists will be represented in this debate.  Only lawyers from state sectors have access to the convention.  Also, an Organizing Committee is charged with selecting those reports related to political concepts of the government.

Laritza Diversent and this writer, though we are both lawyers, have never participated in this kind of event.  “I have not attended the convention.  The only objective of the organizers is to paper over the chinks in the Cuban judicial system,” commented Diversent.

Among the missing matters of the congress are the inadequate assessment of proof on the part of the Tribunals, the forced or slave work of the prisoners of the island and the advantages of an independent judicial power.  Maybe a deep analysis of these topics will avoid another international meeting without justice and without rights.

Translated by mlk

May 21 2012

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