Camagüey is a Cuban province that rarely generates news much beyond low milk production and the slaughter of cattle. A vast plain that forms the widest part of this long and narrow island. A territory vegetating in the apathy of Cuba’s interior, and in the lack of opportunities, which has become chronic in the eastern part of the country.
But in the midst of this apparent calm, this week shock and rumors have taken over its main city, have obsessed the narrow streets of the village founded under the name “Puerto Principe.” The excitement centers around a young man of 24. Reiver Laborde Rico has returned to his family home, leaving behind an investigation in which he appears as a suspect in a murder in Italy.
From the tranquility of Lignano Sabbiadoro, a coastal village a stone’s throw from Venice, he has escaped to the shelter of his Camaguey region, but followed there by the gossip… and the press.
While his sister confessed to having participated in the murder of the elderly couple last August, Reiver insists on his innocence. So he told three Italian journalists who entered Cuba on tourist visas in search of testimony from the presumed fugitive. As he was being recorded, six police officers raided the house and confiscated the footage. The reporters were arrested and deported from the country.
TV and the official newspapers have been silent on the subject. They have not mentioned the scandal that the death of the the couple has unleashed in Italy, nor the alleged involvement of the two Cuban citizens. But notwithstanding this secrecy, the events are on everyone’s lips in Camagüey. Suddenly, the dead calm of the city is broken, as everyone talks about the drama happening thousands of miles away.
2 October 2012