Marcelo Manuel López Bañobre.
Marcelo Manuel López Bañobre
Marcelo Manuel López Bañobre Representative of the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation (Comisión Cubana de Derechos Humanos y Reconciliación Nacional), 15 year sentence.
Marcelo Manuel López Bañobre graduated from the Naval Academy of the Marina de Guerra Revolucionaria in 1985, later becoming a tugboat captain. His background allowed him to study the details surrounding the July 31, 1994 sinking of the "13 de Marzo" tugboat which left thirty seven people dead off the coast of Cuba. Mr. López concluded that the sinking was the result of a criminal act and began writing letters demanding that Cuban juridical authorities open an investigation to uncover those responsible.
After years of receiving no response from the government, Mr. López decided to become a representative of the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation. In this capacity, he began tracking the arrests of Cuban dissidents when the crackdown in Cuba began on March 18, 2003. Days later, on March 25, 2003, Mr. López was himself arrested and is currently serving a 15 year sentence in Guanajay prison in Havana province.
Mr. López was accused of violating Law 88 because of his ties to Amnesty International and other international human rights organizations. The Cuban government tried Mr. López for his role in disseminating information about people given the death penalty in Cuba as well as for encouraging their family members to speak out to international organizations.
Also see: http://www.ruleoflawandcuba.fsu.edu/documents-havana-6e.cfm