APRIL 13, 2011
With a military officer from a terrorist-sponsoring nation and a washed out journalist as key witnesses, the Obama Justice Department has suffered an embarrassing defeat after dedicating infinite resources to prosecute an elderly CIA operative who fought communism.The 83-year-old, Luis Posada Carriles, once worked to destabilize communist governments throughout Latin America and the Obama Administration was determined to convict him for something. So the Justice Department mounted quite a performance during a 13-week trial inEl Paso Texas, flying in a lieutenant colonel from Cuba, which for years has appeared on the U.S. State Department’s list of terrorist-sponsoring nations, to testify against him.The government’s other star witness was a notoriously leftwing author, Ann Louise Bardach, who once worked for the New York Times and has written several favorable books about Cuba’s oppressive communist regime. Bardach testified that more than a decade agoCarriles bragged about his anti-Castro militancy, which supposedly included organizing bombings in Havana to scare tourists and blowing up a jetliner in the 1970s.Frail and somewhat decrepit, Carriles had been charged by the feds with nearly a dozen counts of perjury, obstruction of justice and immigration fraud. The case was such a stretch that jurors took about three hours to acquit him after hearing testimony from dozens of witnesses over several months. One media report said federal prosecutors sat “dejectedly”upon hearing the verdict after “painstakingly” building their case by calling 23 witnesses.Another news story said the short deliberations surprised many as did the across-the-board acquittals. Though jurors left without commenting, defense attorneys suggested their quick verdict indicated that they felt the government framed Carriles and exaggerated the evidence. The Cuban government quickly denounced the acquittal as a “farce” and “mafia justice.”The bottom line for U.S. taxpayers is that the Obama Administration dedicated endless resources to this case only to get its rear kicked in a big way. The big question is why? One blog dedicated to covering Cuban issues sarcastically wrote that Obama’s Department of Justice is considering charging Luis Posada Carriles with jaywalking. Maybe it’s not a joke.
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