Center for a Free Cuba

The Center for a Free Cuba is a Washington, DC-based organization. It states that it is "an independent, non-partisan institution dedicated to promoting human rights and a transition to democracy and the rule of law on the island. Established in November 1997, the center gathers and disseminates information about Cuba and Cubans to the media, non-governmental organizations, and the international community. The center also assists the people of Cuba through its information outreach and humanitarian programs on the island."[1]

Center for a Free Cuba
Formation1997; 27 years ago (1997)
HeadquartersFalls Church, Virginia, United States

Embezzlement by Felipe Sixto edit

Felipe Sixto was working as Chief of Staff in the Center for a Free Cuba. In July 2007, Sixto left the Center and joined the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

The Center's Executive Director reported an alleged misuse of United States Agency for International Development grant money meant for the Center which then suspended financing of its Cuba programs while it investigated being overcharged $570,000 meant for use by the Center to buy radios and flashlights.[2]

On March 1, 2008, Sixto was selected from the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs and appointed by Republican President George W. Bush as a Special Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs, as well as becoming the Deputy Director of the Office of Public Liaison.

When he heard of the investigation Sixto resigned from his new position as Presidential Aide a few weeks later on March 20, 2008.[3]

On December 19, 2008, Sixto pled guilty to embezzlement of government funds for his own use, both while he was at the Center and while he was in service to the President.[4]

On March 18, 2009, Sixto, was fined $10,000 and sentenced to 30 months in prison.[5]

Funding edit

The Center for a Free Cuba has received grants from the National Endowment for Democracy.[6]

References edit

  1. ^ About Us, Center for a Free Cuba[full citation needed]
  2. ^ Washington Post[full citation needed]
  3. ^ "Bush aide resigns over misuse of money in Cuban democracy organization". Associated Press. 28 March 2008.
  4. ^ "Ex-Bush aide gets prison in 'Free Cuba' theft". Associated Press. 18 March 2009.
  5. ^ "Former Bush aide gets 30 months in prison after stealing from Center for Free Cuba". New York Daily News. 18 March 2009.
  6. ^ Cuba NED via[full citation needed]