Press Conference to Discuss Important Developments in Cuban Five Appeals
National Committee To Free The Cuban Five
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
“Gerardo Hernández – for the first time in his own words – gives irrefutable evidence of his innocence.”
– Attorney Richard Klugh
There was “a distinct, fundamental violation of the premises of a fair trial where the government secretly paid highly influential journalists.”
– from the Memorandum of Antonio Guerrero
Two of the Cuban Five, Antonio Guerrero and Gerardo Hernández, have just filed important legal briefs in their “habeas corpus” appeals, their final legal opportunity to obtain a new trial and overturn their unjust convictions.
On Tuesday, March 22, at 12 noon (Eastern), the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five will conduct a call-in press conference at which lawyers involved with the appeals and others involved with the case will speak. (See below for the call-in information, and links to the court documents).
Hernández’s affidavit will be filed today, March 21. Hernández, who is serving life without parole for the shootdown of two planes from the Brothers to the Rescue organization — in which he had no role — explains for the first time, in his own words, his complete innocence.
In the affidavit, Hernández explains to the District Court judge Joan Lenard, that had he known he could have had a separate trial on the ‘murder conspiracy’ charge, he would have testified on his own behalf. Hernandez lists in details the facts of his innocence, which he was unable to present at trial. Cuban Five attorney Richard Klugh will speak to these issues in the Conference and answer questions regarding same.
The press conference will discuss “compelling and irrefutable facts that we believe would exonerate Gerardo Hernández completely,” said Richard Klugh.
Gloria La Riva of the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five on the importance of Hernandez’s affidavit beyond the legal process: “It is essential that the public be made aware of it as well, including the thousands of active supporters of the Five around the world, and important political figures and the media. Most importantly, we demand that the Obama administration immediately free the Cuban Five.”
Guerrero’s appeal, as well as that of Hernández and the upcoming appeal of Ramón Labañino, focuses on newly uncovered evidence of extensive payments from the U.S. government to Miami journalists covering the trial of the Five, evidence which was uncovered in part through Freedom of Information Act requests filed by the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five.
Speaking at the press conference, and available for questions from the media, will be:
• Richard Klugh, Miami attorney, one of the Cuban Five’s legal team
• John Nichols, Professor of Communications (ret.) at the Univ. of Pennsylvania, an expert witness before Congress on the subject of TV and Radio Marti
• Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, atty. with the Partnership for Civil Justice who helped uncover government payments to Miami journalists
• Andrés Gómez of the Alianza Martiana in Miami
• Gloria La Riva, coordinator of the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five
Host: Gloria La Riva
Time: 12:00 PM Eastern, Tuesday, Mar. 22 (please call 5 minutes prior)
Phone #: 1 (847) 413-2425
Code: 6823 731#
• Hernández affidavit (available Mon. after submission to the court)
• Guerrero memorandum
• Extended bios of speakers
• FOIA Documents