Cuban punk rocker fined for disobedience

Fri Aug 29, 2008 8:27pm EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

HAVANA (Reuters) - A Cuban punk rocker whose songs have ridiculed the Cuban government was fined for public disorder on Friday after prosecutors reduced a more serious "social dangerousness" charge that could have sent him to prison for four years.

Gorki Aguila, 39, was ordered to pay 600 Cuban pesos, or about $30, for playing his music too loud during rehearsal, his father Luis Aguila said.

The bushy-haired rocker was arrested on Monday as his band, Porno para (for) Ricardo, was recording its latest album.

News of the arrest quickly spread through the blogosphere and on Friday a crowd of foreign diplomats, foreign correspondents, government press officials and Aquila supporters waited in the street outside the court.

His songs have fiercely criticized Cuba's communist government and its leaders Fidel and Raul Castro, which band members blamed for his arrest.

The Cuban government has said nothing about the case.

The group's CDs are banned in Cuba but copies are circulated underground.

Aquila, who was led into court in handcuffs, was freed after the hearing, which was closed to the press.

The original charge of social dangerousness pertains to people who authorities believe are likely to commit crimes, and can include such things as habitual drunkenness, drug addiction and anti-social behavior.   Continued...

<p>Cuban Punk rocker Gorki Aguila is escorted by police to court in Havana August 29, 2008. Aguila, whose songs have criticized the Cuban government, is facing trial for the charge of "social dangerousness", which could bring about a prison sentence of up to four years. REUTERS/Claudia Daut</p>