Candlelit Vigil for the Miami 5

We call on all supporters of the Miami Five to join us in a candle-lit vigil outside the American Embassy at 5.30 to 7.30pm on 12th October 2009. 


In June 2008, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled that the sentences given to Ramon, Antonio and Fernando were imposed incorrectly and agreed to return them to the original biased Miami court for reconsideration of their sentences before the same vindictive judge.   


This vigil is designed to bring attention to this hearing and let that court know that the eyes of the world are on their deliberations. 


Since 1959, 3,500 Cubans have died as a result of terrorist attacks directed at them from groups based within the exiled community of Miami.  The Cuban Government has repeatedly asked for cooperation from the US Govt in reigning-in these groups but none is ever forthcoming.  During the mid 90’s after a spate of hotel bombings designed to destroy the their fledgling tourist industry the Cuban Government took matters into their own hands and sent 5 men into Miami to infiltrate these groups and gather information. These men are known as the Miami Five.  They were successful and sent the information back to Cuba who in turn compiled an incriminating dossier of evidence on terrorism which they gave to the FBI.


Two weeks later, on September 12th 1998, instead of arresting the terrorists, the five men were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit espionage against the US.   From the time of their arrest to their trial they were held in solitary confinement and, despite defence request for a change of venue, they were tried in Miami with the very terrorists they were infiltrating acting as witnesses for the prosecution.  They were collectively sentenced to four life sentences plus 75 years.


Last June, their lawyers filed 12 global ‘friend of the court’ briefs to the US Supreme Court, including an Irish brief signed by former President Mary Robinson and 47 Irish TD’s.  The Obama administration ask the court not to hear their appeal.  The US Supreme Court dutifully refused to hear the appeal.  With the final legal avenue closed to them, it is now left to the court of public opinion to get justice for these men.


This vigil is part of a global struggle to break the media silence around the case and also marks the beginning of their 12th year in prison, imprisonment in the USA for crimes they did not commit.   


Join us at the US Embassy in Dublin on 12 Oct between 5.30pm and 7.30pm as we press home the campaign to win freedom for the Five.


Further information from:

Eleanor Lanigan,

Free the Miami Five Campaign Ireland

Ph: 087 2426755