[Wed 27 Feb, 10:26]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
US travel ban - (5 replies)

SENATOR Byron Dorgan (Democrat from North Dakota), chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Treasury Appropriations, revealed that the number of U.S. citizens fined by the Treasury Department for traveling to Cuba has almost quadrupled, from 188 in 2000 to 766 in 2001.

He emphatically declared that in an attempt to punish Fidel Castro, U.S. citizens are being denied their freedom to travel. Dorgan made these statements at the start of his subcommittee’s hearings on this subject, which began on February 11 of this year.

Free Antonio Guerrero, Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labaniño, René González and Fernando González!

[Wed 27 Feb, 19:35]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
1. ?quien son?

who are Antonio Guerrero, Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labaniño, René González and Fernando González?


[Thu 28 Feb, 05:17]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
2. To #1

These are the five Cubans who are imprisoned in the US for murder and spying.


[Thu 28 Feb, 06:59]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
3. prisioners

In other poster some one was asking about them as the Havana eight or seven: now, see the difference between a well informed and probably brain washed!!! (amongst millions of cubans) non comunist cuban, if something like that happen in any other side in the world, specially the states, ie, OJ Simpson, we knew what's was going on regurlary, and it didn't have the importance that this 5 cubans have for their country (every week end there is a demonstration in differents places of the country to protest for their inprisionement, direct on TV), this year was named in our country the year of the 5 imprisioned, they were declared national heroes, all of that, and you still get people so near as the US, where they are in jail!!! asking who they are?1?!. Something must be going wrong with the famous media coverage of yours my friends, one day they might convince all of you that Bin Laden is drinking mojitos with Castro...and you might believe it!!!
and now come and call me comunist, ja, ja, ja...I will really rip my self laughing....


[Thu 28 Feb, 10:32]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
4. heritage tours

I guess the agent from heritage tours, general billy, is finally getting some evidence that the US is cracking down on illegal travellers to Cuba. As long as one takes the posture of an ostrich with its head buried in the ground one would keep viewing cuba with rose coloured glasses.


[Thu 28 Feb, 20:02]
PST (Gumly Gumly -17)
5. Clarification of misinformation

What exactly does "the number of U.S. citizens fined" mean?
I suspect is it ONLY 'the number of pre-penalty notices' sent out. It is NOT the number of people convicted and fined under the law : because NO TOURISTS have been. No judges, remember? The prepenalty agreement isnt a FINE if people contest & refuse to pay it, as so many have. (And of course, 'there's a right way, and a wrong way' to respond...)

Basically, if some random piece of paper insists something against me, and I havent plead guilty or confessed or 'been caught with evidence,' I'm going to demand a hearing to (hopefully) challenge whatever evidence, and grill a few Customs goons, and put their spying apparatus or incompetence on trial. But the past few years of piling-up cases makes my 'day in court' (and yours) almost as unlikely as winning the Powerball lottery.

So, let's bring what's really basic back to everyone's attention, for the millionth time, that just like a parking ticket or anything else

a) you can plead no contest and just pay whatever they ask


b) you can treat it as a VOLUNTARY FINE - demand a hearing, contact a lawyer (Just to see, I found a pro bono advocate easily: the National Lawyers Guild is your resource too) and return the paperwork appropriately, without divulging or confessing anything. My friend has never paid a speeding ticket, to the chagrin of every cop he's put on the stand and made a mockery of ... thats what OFAC doesnt want!

(The Sun-Sentinel website has an interesting story mentioning the OFAC fines, and this bit conforms nearly to the dollar sum my friend's mom (in LA) paid for them - family of 3 settled - paid a fraction of the prepenalty "fine" - for just $600.)

The article ran 2-11-02:

"Allen and his partner, each fined $7,500, settled with OFAC for $700 total after the Center for Constitutional Rights' Cuba Travel Docket got involved. Meister and Harriman's $7,500 fines remain unresolved because OFAC has no administrative law judge, even though 1998 rules require one."

See: FINES are really required by a LAW JUDGE, not some photocopied snivelly THREAT. Maybe the OP's article should be CORRECTED to read: ".... the number of U.S. citizens THREATENED WITH FINES by the Treasury Department ..." To emphasize this, a recent CNN report cited a Congressional source identified the number of people who'd been fined (resolved cases: paid or discharged?) as just 357 or something.

Out of a half million or more illegal visits, that's proof of OFAC's statistical FAILURE, no?

Dont get caught, by NOT CONFESSING ANYTHING TO CUSTOMS or OFAC, under any circumstances - without YOU their star witness, they probably have no evidence to convict anyone ever. If they did, they'd be pressing charges and prosecuting ... Wake me up for the 11 oclock news.

Until then, its the same old same old.

Amor y Rabia,

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