Wife Of Cuban Spy Can’t Garnish Air Fees

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MIAMI, Aug. 27 (UPI) — A Miami judge says the ex-wife of a Cuban spy cannot garnish funds paid by charter airlines to Havana in order to settle a lawsuit.

U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno ruled that Ana Margarita Martinez does not have the license required to handle money from Cuba and, therefore, cannot go after the funds to satisfy a $27 million judgment against the Cuban government.

Martinez sued Cuba in 2001 for ordering her to marry Juan Pablo Roque, a spy who fled Miami without her in 1996 just ahead of the downing of two planes carrying anti-Castro activists.

Her lawyers attempted to garnish the settlement from U.S. charter carriers that pay Havana for landing rights, fuel and ground services. But U.S. law requires a special money-handling license from the Treasury Department due to the economic sanctions against Cuba.

The Miami Herald said Moreno’s ruling could clear the way for payment of between $5 million and $10 million from the U.S. air carriers to Cuba. The funds have been frozen in court since last year.

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