On October 12, Florida Senator Marco Rubio wrote a letter to President Obama pressing his administration to seek just compensation for Americans whose properties were illegally confiscated by the Castro regime in Cuba over 50 years ago. There are currently 5,913 certified claims against the government of Cuba, valued at more than $8 billion which remain unresolved.
Senator Rubio writes, “It is disappointing that you have not placed a higher priority on preventing the trafficking of property and obtaining compensation for the property stolen from Americans.”
He goes on to discuss the claims in greater detail stating, “I understand there are more than 5,900 certified claims valued at more than $8 billion owed to Americans who had property confiscated by the Castro regime. It is important to focus on the entirety of the Cuban government’s massive confiscation and ridiculous efforts by the Castro regime to manufacture counter claims against the U.S. government to avoid making Americans whole again.
I am concerned that your efforts to loosen the restrictions on travel to Cuba results in the trafficking—by Americans—of stolen property taken from other Americans, including hotels, cruise terminals, and even the art in Havana’s major museums. It also includes stolen trademarks, such as rum and cigar brands, that American travelers may be purchasing in violation of the express prohibition in U.S. law against transactions involving confiscated property. It is unclear how allowing the production of movies and television shows and the playing of a Major League Baseball exhibition game in Cuba will not increase the number of Americans trafficking in property stolen from Americans.”
The press release issued by Senator Rubio can be found here, and the entire letter can be read below.