Prosecutors Accuse Protestors of Sedition, Although ‘They Are Not Against’ the Cuban Regime

Image released by Humberto López of the oral hearing at the trial held against 33 11J (July 11th) protesters in the Diez de Octubre municipal court.

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Madrid, 3 February 2022 — Only two of the 33 11J (July 11th) protesters who are being tried in the municipal court of Diez de Octubre, in Havana, “said they were against the Cuban political system” and one argued that he thought “the Revolution was falling,” but the vast majority, 27, were only there incited by the euphoria of the moment, while three others had been drinking.This is the interpretation transmitted by the official journalist Humberto López after attending this trial, in which the Prosecutor’s Office asks for high prison sentences for sedition.

Three days after the trial began, the official press has spoken through one of its most prominent media figures, who has attended the hearings on Monday and Tuesday, the first two days of a process that will last until next Monday, 7 February.

The television presenter indicates that the process is being carried out due to “the acts of vandalism on 11 July 2021” and, according to his version, “the vast majority said they regretted their participation in violent acts; others, that their intention was never to cause such damage. Several said they never thought “things would reach such a violent point, but it got out of hand.”

Humberto López gives details of the composition of the court, made up of three men and two women, and the presence of a prosecutor and his assistant, in addition to the defense team, made up of 20 lawyers, two of whom are court-appointed and 18 appointed by the accused.

According to their testimony, all of the defendants refused to respond to the Prosecutor and only a few to the defense’s questions, while of the six children under 18, some – without specifying how many – requested to be accompanied by their parents.

López recounts that in the afternoon the documentary evidence was presented, much of which was challenged by the defense. Most of these complaints were related to the records attributed to some of the defendants and to which their lawyers objected due the lapse of time, although the journalist does not question the relationship between documentary evidence and the records of an alleged criminal.

On Tuesday the presentation continued to the viewing of the images published on social networks provided by the Prosecutor’s Office, showing images in which “police cars are overturned, stones, sticks and bottles are thrown. Offenses and verbal aggressions are heard,” it continues.

In relation to the witnesses of the Prosecutor’s Office, López highlights a colonel who said “he was convinced that he would lose his life,” although all declared they had suffered “violence, physical and verbal attacks” and seen “damage to state property.”

Subsequently, the Prosecutor’s Office reported the data extracted from the investigation, according to which 31 of the 33 defendants admitted guilt and confessed, while one of the remaining two denies any participation in the events (proven in videos according to the prosecutor) and another partially acknowledged the attack on several police officers at whom he threw stones.

As for the damage, the Prosecutor’s Office considers that 19 people “overturned, stoned, hit and looted vehicles,” in one way or another, while another 8 encouraged the demonstration by climbing on top of an overturned car, and 4 put garbage containers on cars.

They also attributed theft to the demonstrators, due to allegedly stolen accessories from the attacked vehicles, and theft of property, money and documentation from the agents.

The list of damaged cars is 4 patrol cars (2 Peugeot, 1 Hyundai and 1 Lada) with 1 year of operation, 1 Lada from the Municipal Assembly of People’s Power of Cerro, another with registration from the Ministry of the Interior and a motorcycle from the same department.

The lawyers, following López’s account, asked the invetigator on the case “if his clients recognized their participation before or after they were shown the videos, behavior during the investigation process, expert opinion to determine if the identity of the people seen in the videos coincides with that of the accused and the state of health of the detainees.”

The Justicia 11J platform has not yet commented on these details of the trial, leaked by the television presenter, although it is  accompanying the families of the accused in the process.

The sentences requested by the Prosecutor’s Office for those involved in this case, which includes those who protested at the corner of Toyo, range between 13 and 25 years in prison; for minors they range between 13 and 23 years; and in six cases the petition for conviction is greater than the age of the defendant.


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