Monday, 31 May 2010

U.S. Government Paid Miami Reporters to Be Biased against Cuba

Source: Prensa Latina (Habana)
29 May 2010

A civic group will shortly disclose evidence on how the U.S. Government covertly paid tens of thousands of dollars to Miami journalists working for major media outlets to incendiary stories against Cuba and five Cuban antiterrorists.

The evidence has been uncovered by the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five, which next June 2 will make it public at a press conference. The stories were published during the federal government's politically-charged Miami prosecution, the organizations denounces in a press release.

Fernando Gonzalez, Rene Gonzalez, Gerardo Hernandez, Ramon Labanino and Antonio Guerrero, internationally known as the Cuban Five, are serving sentences varying from 15 years to double life, after being convicted of charges including unproven espionage conspiracy.

The press conference will reveal names of journalists, payment amounts, and will have available notebooks highlighting articles and propaganda by supposedly-independent journalists who were covertly on the payroll of the U.S. Government.

Speaking at the press conference will be attorneys with the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) that have filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of the National Committee.

The litigation filed by the PCJF asserts that the Broadcasting Board of Governors and its Office of Cuba Broadcasting are withholding information that will show that they have engaged in activities in violation of federal law, specifically the Smith-Mundt Act, which prohibits the BBG from seeking to propagandize the U.S. public, and may be continuing to do so.

The press conference will announce that a coalition of organizations is initiating a nationwide campaign that will call on U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to take immediate action to provide remedy and relief to the Cuban Five based on the U.S. Government's misconduct and covert operations which deprived the Five of their fundamental right to a fair trial.

Gloria La Riva, coordinator of the Cuban Five committee who will speak at the press conference, said, "Many of the articles and commentaries by the government-paid journalists were highly prejudicial and biased, with the obvious aim of negatively influencing the Miami public and the jury pool, convicting the Cuban Five, and depriving them of the fundamental right to a fair trial."