Imagine being held prisoner for over 39 years on a single charge, first-time, no violence cannabis crime, as a former CIA Bay of Pigs volunteer, getting out of prison now facing deportation. Although his family is celebrating now, they worry his freedom may be short-lived as he awaits to meet with immigration officials.
This is the story of Antonio Bascaró, who was imprisoned back when Ronald Reagan started his war on drugs, back in the 1980’s. Back then, marijuana was being called to be the “most dangerous drug in the United States” and it needed to be eradicated by the sitting President of the USA. He was charged as a member of a trafficking operation moving marijuana in the late 1970s.
Fast forward a couple of decades, and many states are passing legislation to make medical- and/or recreational cannabis consumption not only legal, but well regulated. This can help these states raise tremendous amounts of new tax revenue.
It’s about time people held in prison for non-violent cannabis & marijuana crimes, their cases get reviewed and where possible get clemency granted. It would save the whole society so much money, and these people could return to their lives and become valued members of society.
In the case if Antonio Bascaró, having been trained by the CIA as a volunteer in the Bay of Pigs invasion to fight communism, facing deportation is extra tough. At least Antonio is now free for the first time after almost 40 years. He was originally sentenced to 60 years but received time off for good behavior.
After his release on Wednesday morning he enjoyed his first meal outside of jail with a side of Cuban coffee.
Antonio’s daughter has set up a petition for President Trump to grant him Clemency. To sign the petition, click here.