[Ppnews] Supreme court won't review 'Cuban 5' case

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Mon Jun 15 13:20:27 EDT 2009

High court won't review 'Cuban 5' espionage case


June 15, 2009
Reprinted from 

WASHINGTON (AP) ­ The Supreme Court on Monday 
refused to review the convictions of five Cuban 
intelligence agents who say they did not receive 
a fair trial because of strong anti-Castro sentiment in Miami.

The justices left in place the convictions of the 
so-called "Cuban Five," despite calls from Nobel 
Prize winners and international legal groups to review the case.

The five ­ Ruben Campa, Rene Gonzalez, Gerardo 
Hernandez, Luis Medina and Antonio Guerrero ­ 
were convicted on charges of acting as 
unregistered Cuban agents in the United States 
and of espionage conspiracy for attempting to penetrate U.S. military bases.

Hernandez was also convicted of murder conspiracy 
in the deaths of four Miami-based pilots whose 
planes, part of the Brothers to the Rescue 
organization, were shot down by Cuban fighter 
jets in 1996 off the island's coast.

The five have been lionized as heroes in Cuba, 
while exile groups say they were justly punished.

Ten Nobel Prize winners and lawyers and legal 
groups from more than a dozen countries groups 
urged the high court to step into the case.

The Obama administration contended that the 
convictions were fairly won, and that high court review was unnecessary.

A three-judge panel of the federal appeals court 
in Atlanta initially reversed the convictions, 
agreeing with the defendants that the trial should have been moved from Miami.

But the full 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated the convictions.

Hernandez is serving a life sentence, while 
Gonzalez is serving a prison term of 15 years.

The appeals court ordered new sentences for the 
other three men, including two who originally were given life in prison.

The case is Campa v. U.S., 08-987.

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