Five Years in Prison for a Young Man from Sancti Spititus for Calling for the Resignation of Cuban President Diaz-Canel and Stoning a Store

The young  man Leodán Pérez Colón was arrested on July 16 for acts unrelated to the 11J protests. (14ymedio)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Madrid, 19 January 2022 — Three young people from Sancti Spíritus have been added to those sentenced to prison for acts linked to the July 11th (11J) protests in Cuba. The Provincial Court made public this Tuesday the sentences for Leodán Pérez Colón, who received 5 years in prison, Yoanderley Quesada, 2 years, and Yoel Castillo, 1 year and 8 months.

The three young people were tried on December 27 and their sentencing was scheduled for January 13, but it was postponed for a week, according to the mother of the main defendant Elizabeth Colon Peña, who described the delay as punishment and torture of the relatives. Her son was the only one who was in pretrial detention, while the other two convicted had been released pending trial.

Leodán Pérez Colón was arrested on July 16 at his home, located on Calle Independencia, between Tirso Marín and Frank País. The young man was with several colleagues, who were also detained and who, according to Sancti Spiritus activist Néstor Estévez, behaved improperly during the trial “trying to implicate their friends to save themselves.”

According to his family members, Pérez Colón was accused of making two direct calls through Facebook asking for Miguel Díaz-Canel to resign so that the country could improve, although the authorities considered it contempt, criminal association and acts against State Security.

According to the list of prisoners kept by the Justicia 11J collective, Pérez Colón was detained “for events after July 11,” when “they took him out of his house accusing him of throwing stones at a nearby MLC (hard currency) store.” The young man was accused of criminal association, resistance and aggravated disobedience, according to the registry.

Yoanderley Quesada, who considers himself the brother of Pérez Colón, was accused, instead, “of conspiring to reactivate the protests,” while Yoel Castillo is the only case not documented in the lists of prisoners for 11J.

According to Estévez, of the 42 detainees in the province, only one went out to protest, Luis Mario Niedas Hernández, who was sentenced in October to three years in prison, half of what the Prosecutor’s Office requested for him for “disrespect, spread of epidemics and instigation to commit a crime.”

Alexander Fábregas, the fifth of those sentenced in Sancti Spíritus as a result of the summer protests, was taken from his home and tried nine days later, and was sentenced to 9 months in prison.


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