According to the ruling, dated January 23 and to which EFE had access this Wednesday, the People’s Provincial Court of Havana convicted them of “sedition”, but handed down sentences that were mostly less than those requested by the Prosecutor’s Office.
The sentence – which is not final and therefore can still be appealed – corresponds to a trial carried out last November and which caused great media attention on the island.
Among those tried was Jonathan Torres, a young man who was 17 years old at the time of the events (the only minor in this process). The minimum criminal age in Cuba is 16. He is one of the 55 people between the ages of 16 and 17 who have faced criminal proceedings for the events of 11J, as confirmed by the Cuban Attorney General’s Office.
In the case of Torres, the court sentenced him to a four-year “limitation of freedom” sentence (when the Prosecutor’s Office requested five)
In the case of Torres, the court sentenced him to a four-year “limitation of freedom” sentence (when the Prosecutor’s Office requested five). This means that she will not go to prison, but that he will have his movements controlled by a judge.
In the same way, there are three sanctioned with correctional work without internment and another three with internment. In statements to EFE, Orlando Ramírez, the husband of Torres’s mother, described the process as a “show” and, although he considered the ruling a “victory”, added that “really (the trial against his stepson) is a mistake because he did nothing”.
In total, a cumulative 75 years in prison were handed down to the protesters.
The court considered as proven facts that the convicts mobilized in the Havana municipality of Arroyo Naranjo with “the purpose of generating the destabilization of the social and political order established in the Republic of Cuba.”
They were also accused of throwing stones and shouting slogans against Miguel Díaz-Canel. However, according to the brief, at least three of the defendants denied having been present during the events.
The court considered as proven facts that the convicts mobilized in the Havana municipality of Arroyo Naranjo
Two of the defendants’ mothers were called to testify but declined.
The trial was carried out with witnesses presented by the Prosecutor’s Office –mostly policemen– who were censured by the defenses for their hesitations and changes in the testimonies, as EFE learned at the time through a source who was inside the courtroom.
Likewise, during the trial the accusation of “attack, public disorder, contempt and incitement to commit a crime” was changed to the crime of “sedition”.
This change caused annoyance among at least two of the lawyers –according to the same source–, because this criminal type implies “an intention to destabilize the order of the State”, in accordance with the Penal Code.
As they argued, this is not sustained because the 15 participated in a demonstration that took place far from the headquarters of the powers of the Cuban State.
On one of the days of the trial, two of the lawyers criticized the proceedings against the 11J protesters, as EFE learned at the time.
One of them said: “It is time for the country to start healing its wounds, it is time for the country to sit down to talk, it is time for the country to create public spaces so that all those people who do not think alike can express themselves safely and legally without being charged with a crime.
The Cuban Minister of Justice, Óscar Silvera, held a meeting last week with ambassadors of the European Union (EU) where they even raised the pardon of protesters, as EFE learned.
So far, some 700 sentences have been handed down, according to the records kept by organizations such as Justicia 11J and Cubalex. Of these cases, some penalties go up to 30 years in prison for the crime of sedition.
Collaborate with our work:
The team of 14ymedio He is committed to doing serious journalism that reflects the reality of deep Cuba. Thank you for accompanying us on this long road. We invite you to continue supporting us, but this time becoming a member of our newspaper. Together we can continue transforming journalism in Cuba.