Day in the Five: Meet Orlando Bosch, Havana's terrorist, Miami's hero

On September 16, 1968, Orlando Bosch was arrested for firing a bazooka at a Cuba-bound Polish ship in Miami harbour.

Orlando Bosch

Convicted and sentenced to 10 years in prison, the onetime pediatrician—who, more significantly, was trained in using explosives by the CIA—was paroled in 1974. He then fled the country rather than answer questions in a murder investigation, thus violating the terms of his parole.

In 1976, Bosch—with Luis Posada Carriles—helped mastermind the bombing of a Cubana Airlines flight, killing 73 people. He was convicted in Venezuela but later acquitted on a technicality.

In 1986, Bosch attempted to return to the U.S.

Despite the fact he was immediately charged with a parole violation and despite the fact the U.S. Defence Department considerded him one of the hemisphere’s most deadly terrorists and wanted him denied asylum, Bosch had friends in high places.

Thanks to pressure from anti-Castro Cuban exile leaders and support from soon-to-be Florida Governor Jeb Bush (the son of the then-president), Bosch was set free.

In 1983, Miami honoured him with Orlando Bosch Day.

He is currently a free man in Florida.

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