The top federal prosecutor in Miami, R. Alexander Acosta, announced Sept. 29 that the full 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was being asked to reconsider a recent decision by a three-judge panel of that court reversing the convictions of the “Cuban Five.”

The five Cuban nationals — Gerardo Hernández, Ramon Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando Gonzáles and René González — were convicted in 2001 of an assortment of charges stemming from their efforts to frustrate terrorist attacks against Cuba emanating from Miami.

The three-judge panel issued a decision Aug. 9 that said that pervasive prejudice against socialist Cuba in the Miami area, where the trial was held, prejudiced the trial’s outcome. It ordered a new trial in a different jurisdiction.

Paul McKenna, attorney for Hernandez, predicted that attempts to reverse the appeals court decision would not succeed. Referring to its 93-page decision, he said, “It was so heavily fact-laden that it is going to be very difficult or impossible to get a full court to reverse the decision.”

However, the apparent inclination by U.S. prosecutors to delay justice for the five men suggests the possibility of the case eventually being sent to the U.S. Supreme Court. Meanwhile, the campaign grows for the men’s release on bail as they await a new trial. They’ve already served seven years.

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