Descendants of Batista’s henchmen look to be “compensated” under the Helms-Burton Act
With the U.S. government re-activating the Helms-Burton Act’s Title III, José Ramón López – son of a swindler and lackey of the Batista dictatorship, José López Vilaboy – has filed a claim on Cubana Airlines, legally confiscated as a misappropriated asset after the triumph of the Revolution
Dolphin Xiqués Cutiñomay 31, 2019 15:05:24
Fulgencio Batista became a major stockholder in Cubana de Aviación S.A. via murky financial maneuvers, with the rest of the shares owned by his henchmen. Photo: Granma Archives
When dictator Fulgencio Batista decided to flee Cuba, a large number of his cronies joined the expedition. Some 25 suitcases accompanied him onto the aircraft and he pressed a bulging briefcase to his chest. The briefcase contained dollars and Batista, who trusted no one, feared losing them. He was well acquainted with his traveling companions, the many outrages they had committed and the shady operations they ran.
The money had been given to him by his closest relatives, like Andrés Domingo and Morales del Castillo, Presidential secretary; José López Vilaboy and Manuel Pérez Benitoa, although the latter had been in New York since the end of December, when he took Batista’s children to the city, along with 43 million dollars that were deposited in the dictator’s account, although the story goes that he deposited 42 and kept a million himself.
Lopez Vilaboy couldn’t get a seat on the planes that took off with the dictator’s pals, obliging him to seek refuge in the Guatemalan embassy in Havana.
These days, with the United States government re-activating the Helms-Burton Act’s Title III, granting the right to file court claim to those who were not citizens of that country at the time of nationalizations, a character known as José Ramón López, who says he is the son of Cuban businessman José López Vilaboy, has asserted that, pre-1959, his father’s properties included the Rancho Boyeros airport, Cubana Airlines, the Colina Hotel, and other buildings. Continue reading