14ymedio, Havana, 5 March 2019 — After spending 48 hours in detention, between Saturday and Monday, the former political prisoner and activist Ángel Moya has been accused of “damaging police property.”
Last Saturday, Moya went running, as usual, through Lawton, where State Security remains deployed between Thursday and Sunday to control the headquarters of the Ladies in White. “When I returned from my run, at about 10:00, and by the same route as always, the officer in charge of the operation arrested me and took me to the Aguilera police station,” the activist told 14ymedio. “He stopped me, I asked him what was going on and he just said: ‘Get in’.”
Once in the police station, he was fined 150 Cuban pesos (CUP) for “attempting to violate State Security equipment” and, two hours later, he was taken to his home in a patrol car. However, he says, at that moment he started a protest and that caused his immediate arrest again.
“I started to protest against the arbitrary arrest, shouting: ‘Down with the dictatorship, freedom for the Cuban people, down with Raúl’.” That detention was more violent, he describes.
“The officers got out of the car, left me alone, closed the four windows tightly and left me in the sun. I hit the windows and told them to lower them so that I could get air, but they said no,” he complains.
Moya says he was sprayed with pepper spray in response to his attempts to open a door or window and breathe, and then he was taken to the Alamar police station.
From there he was referred to the polyclinic to have his vision checked, affected by the spray, but the activist refused to receive medical assistance while in handcuffs. On his return to the police station, around 5:00 in the afternoon, he was called to investigation where he had a meeting with Lieutenant Colonel Kenia Morales who opened a case to demand the payment of the alleged damages to the patrol vehicle, and where he urged Moya to pay for the equipment he allegedly damaged.
The activist refused to pay the fine, because he felt that he had only protected himself from police treatment. According to Moya, his attitude was due to his legitimate “right to self-defense against police methods used by order of State Security to torture me and subject me to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.”
This Monday, Moya was released around one in the afternoon. “If they decide to take me to court I will go but I will not appoint a lawyer because I have not committed any crime,” he says.
Ángel Moya is one of the political prisoners who refused to go into exile after the release of the Black Spring prisoners of conscience negotiated between the Cuban Government and the Catholic Church in 2010, a process of liberation that had the support of the Spanish Government, then chaired by the Socialist José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.
Currently, he is one of the most visible promoters of the #TodosMarchamos (We All March) campaign, which demands “the freedom of Cuban political prisoners.”
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