Dear Senators Menendez and Rubio,
I am writing to you on behalf of the members of the Fraternal Order of Police to thank you for introducing S. Res. 232, which calls for the immediate extradition or expulsion to the United States convicted murderers Joanne Chesimard, Charles Hill, William Morales and more than 70 other fugitives from justice who are receiving safe haven in the Republic of Cuba. We are proud to strongly support this Resolution.
Over the years, the FOP has consistently called on our Federal government to bring all practicable pressure on this communist nation to honor its obligations with respect to the Treaty Between the United States and Cuba for the Mutual Extradition of Fugitives from Justice and ceases protecting theses wanted and violent criminals.
Cuba is still harboring Joanne Chesimard, who murdered New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster and severely wounded his partner Trooper James Harper in 1973. She escaped a maximum security prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba, where she now lives under the protection of the Cuban government as an example of “political repression” in the United States. In May 2013, she became the first woman to be added to the “Most Wanted Terrorists” list published by the Federal Bureau oflnvestigation. There is a $2 million reward, $1 million each from the Federal government and the State of New Jersey, for information leading to her apprehension.
In addition, the two previous Cuban Presidents, Fidel and Raul Castro, granted asylum to three members of the group called the “Republic of New Africa,” who murdered New Mexico State Trooper Robert Rosenbloom in 1972. One of the three has died, but at least one, Charles Hill, continues to live in comfort in Cuba.
No responsible government should harbor and protect anti-police assassins from justice. The Fraternal Order of Police supports the recent changes with respect to travel to Cuba and we believe strongly that before any restoration of normal relations is considered, the Cuban government must return those who murdered U.S. law enforcement officers and then fled our justice system. Simply put, we ought not to reward the Cuban policy of providing a safe haven
for the murderers of Americans. We strongly support and are very proud of the Senate’s call for the surrender of these fugitives to the United States.
The FOP recognizes that relationships with other governments are sensitive and complex. However, the American people and the Fraternal Order of Police do not feel that we must compromise our system of justice and the fabric of our society to appease foreign dictators. The blood of American law enforcement officers shed while doing their job on American soil demands justice and the deliberate protection of these killers should not be tolerated within the community of nations.
On behalf of the more than 348,000 members of the Fraternal Order of Police, I want to express our deepest gratitude for S. Res. 232, for your ongoing support of law enforcement officers and for the leadership you have shown on this painful issue. If I can be of any additional help, please do not hesitate to contact me or Executive Director Jim Pasco in my Washington, D.C. office.