This is the first I hear or this, but it's pretty funny...to some.
Officials doomed by jokes about Castros
The New York Times on Sunday cast new light on the dismissal March 2 of Cuban officials Carlos Lage, Felipe Pérez Roque and Fernando Remírez de Estenoz. "The men were involved socially with a man named Conrado Hernández (in undated photo), who was surreptitiously recording their conversations during regular parties at his ranch in Matanzas," The Times reported, citing two unidentified Cuban functionaries. "Some of those recorded conversations [...] included acerbic criticism and off-color jokes about various government leaders, including Fidel and Raúl Castro," The Times said.
Hernández, a Cuban with good business connections who represented the Basque-owned Society for Industrial Promotion and Reconversion (SPRI), was arrested on Feb. 14 as he prepared to leave Havana for Spain with his wife. His wife was released but he reportedly remains in detention.
On March 6, Raúl Castro summoned his top 20 officials to explain the dismissals, The Times said. "In broad details, he described the evidence against the men and played certain sections of the recordings for those gathered."
The Bilbao newspaper El Correo reported Sunday that a four-man delegation from the Basque government has arrived in Havana to inquire about Hernández's legal status and to find a replacement for him as a business liaison.
---Renato Pérez Pizarro.