New Challenge for the Cuban Judicial System. Documents from the Trial
against Angel Santiesteban
Posted on August 23, 2013
Requested review of the trial against the dissident writer Angel
Santiesteban Prats, we make available the documents from the same.
At a month after the presentation of the review of the trial against
Angel Santiesteban Prats, last July 4, not only has no judicial reply
been received about it, but, as is already public knowledge, on August 2
he was moved for the second time, in an illegal manner from the 1580
prison to an unknown location until day 7, on which even if his
whereabouts were known, he continues incommunicado, with no right to
calls or visits.
Angel Santiesteban Prats finishes five months in prison, sentenced in a
judicial farce prepared by the political police of president Raul Castro
with the clear objective of silencing one of the few intellectuals of
international stature who has decided to lift his voice, his active
journalism and literature in order to denounce the dictatorial situation
prevailing on the island from his blog The Children that No One Wanted.
Crimes that were not proved because he did not commit them, false
witnesses used on the part of the accuser, refusal to accept testimony
that demonstrates the innocence of the accused, scandalous links among
the political police and the judicial organs that violate the separation
of powers, and juridical irregularities throughout the process, have
been the reasons put forward by those charged with defending the writer
in order to interpose the judicial review fulfilling all the elements
set by existing law.
This is a new challenge for Cuban justice which — as the case of Angel
Santiesteban Prats itself demonstrates, and as has been denounced by
many opponents over the last ten years — is a system bound by the
political and ideological interests of the government.
In this case, in a method that is a systematic practice against the
opposition on the island, the Cuban government tries to publicly
discredit another dissident. This is not the first time that the tactic
is used to portray important writers as "mediocre writers," "drunk
losers," "trashy journalists," and other derogatory labels (remember the
cases of the poets and journalists Raul Rivero, Manuel Vazquez Portal
and Ricardo Gonzalez Alfonso, sentenced in the so-called "Black Spring
Now they criminalize, accusing Angel Santiesteban Prats of a common
crime of family violence, a writer well respected by the intellectual
and artistic classes of his country and of other nations. The objective
is very clear: detract validity from the force and reach of his
international denunciations about the human rights violations that this
regime commits every day against Cuban citizens. One of the most
shameful links in this strategy, as the writer himself denounced on his
blog before entering prison, is the fact that the sanction was
communicated by an official of the political police, weeks before the
tribunal gave its verdict.
Since he was thrown behind bars, on February 28, from the La Lima
prison, from an open regime that corresponds to his sentences, the
writer has not stopped his denunciations. When at the beginning of April
the Cuban government selected a group of the best jails to show to a
Commission of National and Foreign Journalists, in a visit preceding the
Report that Cuba had to present to the UN"s Commission on Human Rights
in the month of May, Santiesteban Prats was moved in a violent and
illegal manner to another maximum severity prison in order to isolate
him from any possible contact with said Commission.
In the Petition for Review presented officially in July, the lawyer,
Amelia Rodriguez Cala, analyzes exhaustively all the violations and
judicial irregularities committed during the prior trial, which
sentenced the writer to five years for supposed crimes in spite of the
extenuating legalities that according to Cuban law only permit
imposition of sentences of fines or a year of deprivation of liberty. In
addition, new elements that demonstrate the innocence of the writer are
provided in the File of the Petition for Review.
The complete story of this crude maneuver that the Havana regime carried
out in order to silence an intellectual that made it uncomfortable, is
summarized by Amir Valle, another prize-winning Cuban author who suffers
exile in Germany, on his blog A título personal (Personal Capacity) and
can be read here: General Chronology of an Outrage.
Translated by mlk
10 August 2013
Source: "New Challenge for the Cuban Judicial System. Documents from the
Trial against Angel Santiesteban | Translating Cuba" -