Norberto González Claudio has been in U.S. federal custody since his arrest in May 2011. Charged in November 2012 in connection with the $7 million dollar ‘expropriation’ carried out by the Macheteros clandestine organization in 1983 Hartford, Connecticut, Norberto was sentenced to five years. His release date, as still appears on the Bureau of Prisons website, was set for September 7, 2014.
Norberto’s two brothers, Avelino and Orlando, who both completed sentences also in connection with the Hartford action, wrote a letter on August 18 denouncing a recent development in their brother’s case. Apparently, Norberto’s release date has been moved to ‘sometime’ in 2015, pending a probation hearing on October 6, 2014. “This represents a cruel and unusual punishment in retaliation for Norberto’s protest and for maintaining an upright position before the abuses to which he is constantly subjected in prison,” his brothers wrote.
Norberto’s release has been called for in the most recent resolution approved by the United Nations Special Committee on Decolonization.
Human rights expert Wilma E. Reverón Collazo gave the following reaction to the news: “It is a sign that the US has no intention of respecting our right to struggle for our self determination and that the President’s proposal for a plebiscite is just for entertainment purposes. Another show of force to remind us who is the boss. However the people who are willing to give life and liberty for their freedom won’t be stopped by the US government’s shenanigans.”
Download the letter in PDF format, in both English and Spanish, here.