Overseas Civilian Contractors

News and issues relating to Civilian Contractors working Overseas

Trial of US contractor enters 2nd day in Cuba

By PAUL HAVEN  Associated Press

HAVANA (AP) – The trial of a U.S. government contractor detained more than a year on charges he sought to undermine Cuba’s government enters its second day Saturday in a case that has worsened relations between the longtime enemies.

Alan Gross, who was arrested in December 2009, stands accused of illegally bringing communications equipment into Cuba for Development Associates International as part of a USAID-backed democracy program.

Cuba says the programs are aimed at overthrowing the government of President Raul Castro. U.S. officials and Gross’ family insist he has done nothing wrong, and say he should be freed on humanitarian grounds in any case. Gross faces 20 years in jail if convicted.

The trial began Friday with about nine hours of testimony in a courtroom in a converted mansion in a once-prosperous neighborhood of Havana. The proceedings were closed to journalists.

March 5, 2011 - Posted by | Civilian Contractors, Government Contractor, Legal Jurisdictions, State Department, USAID | , , , ,

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