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Bay of Pigs Veteran May Face Deportation After Finishing 40-Year Sentence for Marijuana Smuggling

A Cuban exile who participated in the Bay of Pigs invasion may end up getting deported from the United States to Cuba once he finishes serving a sentence for marijuana crimes.

84-year-old Antonio Bascaro will be released from prison in June after being sentenced to 60 years in prison, but only serving 40 for good behavior, after he was arrested in 1980 for helping import around 500,000 pounds of marijuana to the United States. Bascaro is believed to be the longest serving prison sentence for marijuana crimes in the United States. Unfortunately for Bascaro, he's not a United States citizen and when he's released from prison in June he will likely be deported to his native country of Cuba.

But Bascaro's participation in the Bay of Pigs invasion will complicate this. Bascaro and other Cuban exiles were trained by the CIA and U.S. military to invade Cuba in 1961 and overthrow Fidel Castro's communist government. The invasion was a huge disaster with more than 100 exiles killed and 1,500 captured. Bascaro was trained as a pilot for the invasion, but President John F. Kennedy did not order the planes to attack after realizing the invasion was a failure.

If Bascaro is sent back to Cuba for his crimes, he will likely become a prisoner in the country and be forced back into a prison cell for the rest of his life. Bascaro says that sending him back to Cuba would violate international law, because it would force him to become a political prisoner. But we'll see if the United States feels the same way.

Many believe Bascaro's sentence was far too harsh, with even the prosecutor who handled his case believing he should've been released from prison by now considering he only dealt with marijuana and not harder drugs.

(h/t Washington Examiner)


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