Cuba volleyball player seeks asylum in Puerto Rico

Cuba volleyball player seeks asylum in Puerto Rico
Tue Oct 20, 3:40 pm ET

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – A Cuban volleyball player who vanished from his
team’s hotel in Puerto Rico appeared at a U.S. immigration office and
requested political asylum on Tuesday.

Leonardo Leyva, 20, received a notice to appear before an immigration
judge for a hearing, said Ivan Ortiz, a spokesman for U.S. Immigration
and Customs Enforcement in San Juan.

Leyva said he plans to keep up his athletic career and pursue “a better
future” for himself and his family, the newspaper Primera Hora reported
on its Web site.

The Cuban appeared at the office with a lawyer and an unidentified
friend, according to a police statement. He had been the subject of a
police search after his team reported him missing from their hotel in
San Juan shortly after midnight Friday.

Attorney Sergio Ramos said Leyva’s plans were uncertain, but he was
looking forward to settling in Puerto Rico.

The Cuban team was visiting the U.S. territory for a North, Central
America and Caribbean Volleyball Confederation tournament. Despite
Leyva’s absence, the team won the gold medal by defeating the United States.

Cuba volleyball player seeks asylum in Puerto Rico – Yahoo! News (20
October 2009)

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