U.S. Contractor Alan Gross’ Case In Cuba Finishes Saturday; No Verdict Yet

A view of Havana, Cuba
A view of Havana, Cuba
A view of Havana, Cuba

Today in Latin America

Top Story — The trial of U.S. contractor Alan Gross in Cuba for charges of threatening to subvert the Communist government finished on Saturday, though the verdict has yet to be announced.

Gross was first jailed in December of 2009 without formal charges for bringing satellite communication equipment into Cuba. Gross’ family and U.S. officials have said he intended to help the island’s small Jewish community connect to the Internet, but Cuban officials claim his U.S.A.I.D.-funded program aimed to provide support to opponents of the Castro government.

Gross’ attorney Peter Kahn asked the Cuban government in a statement to release his client has a humanitarian gesture. Over the course of Gross’ detention, his wife has suffered lung cancer and his daughter underwent a double-mastectomy due to breast cancer.

Cuban state media reported that during the trial Gross accused his company, Development Alternatives, Inc., of putting him in danger and ruining his family’s life and economy. No foreign media were permitted to view the proceedings.

The Cuban court’s decision in Gross’ case could have implications for U.S. relations with Cuba. The case arose as President Barack Obama had used executive authority to loosen travel and remittance policy to Cuba.

Announcement from the Latin America News Dispatch

  • Due to a database error, the Latin America News Dispatch went offline from late Thursday night until Sunday, causing a a halt in Friday’s edition.

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