MIAMI, United States. — The trial against Cuban artists Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara and Maykel Castillo Pérez (Maykel Osorbo) was “concluded for sentencing” after the second day of the oral hearing, held at the Popular Municipal Court of Marianao, in Havana.
According to the non-governmental organization Cubalexa phrase by rapper Maykel Osorbo emerged in the trial, who addressed the judge directly before the end of the hearing.
“I hope that the sentence that you decide, madam judge, is that of your conscience,” said the member of the San Isidro Movement (MSI).
The information from the NGO was confirmed by the curator Anamely Ramos, who offered in her profile Facebook some details about the oral hearing.
“In the trial, the first thing they said was that they were not being tried as political prisoners or anything like that… just like that. Oh and of course they weren’t artists. But we remain silent in the face of such absurdity,” wrote the activist, who was exiled by the Cuban regime last March.
This Tuesday, Anamely Ramos herself had denounced the poor defense of Maykel Osorbo, whose defense attorney was removed from the case just three days before the trial.
“Today everyone has agreed that Maykel’s defense is reverend shit. We are not surprised. We know how far a collective law firm lawyer in Cuba can maneuver in political cases like this one. Three days before the trial, the lawyer we had been working with for months was removed. And the result is that this new lawyer, Yoilandris Savón, barely spoke and it was Maykel himself who explained everything, with a serenity – they tell me – that many would not recognize in Maykel, but those of us who know him well, yes.
According to the activist, the poor performance of the new lawyer left the rapper deprived of any possibility of winning a case already conditioned in advance by its political nuances.
“This lawyer has achieved with his poor performance so far that the trial looks unbalanced. That within the general disaster, the injustice and the absolute sadness that falls on both of them, the part related to Maykel seems much more devoid of everything. Because that is what feeds that miserable power, to accentuate helplessness even when it seems that it is not possible anymore, to accentuate the vulnerability more of some than of others, when it seems impossible to divide between bad and bad.
Political trial and common crimes
The trial against Otero Alcántara and Osorbo was marked by a strong police operation launched by the Cuban political police, which prevented activists, independent journalists and foreign diplomats.
Luis Manuel Otero and Maykel Osorbo faced prosecutor requests for seven and 10 years in prison, respectively, for the crimes of “outrage against national symbols of a continuing nature”, “disrespect”, “defamation of institutions and organizations and of the heroes and martyrs”, “attack”, “resistance” and “public disorder”.
Luis Manuel Otero has been detained since July 11, 2021, when he was intercepted by agents of the Cuban regime in the vicinity of the Sevilla hotel in Havana during the anti-government protests that day. In the case of Maykel Osorbo, he has been deprived of liberty for more than a year.
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