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I am a subscriber to The Angling Report and an occasional traveler to Cuba. I am also an attorney who works with the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York City and I have spent some of the last 20 years or so representing travelers to Cuba. We litigated cases challenging the government travel restrictions, etc. We were involved in representing Dan Snow and his bass fishing trips. I am writing to give you an update about our recent experiences with travel to Cuba.

You and your readers should know that our office is willing to represent at no cost anyone who has problems from Treasury as a result of traveling to Cuba. We presently represent approximately 40 or so people and to date none of our clients has had to pay a fine. Many of these cases are still pending and I do not know the final results, but to the extent we lose any, I do not anticipate fines of more than $750. This is particularly so for first-time violations.

Under present procedures, Treasury will send out an after-the-fact letter asking for information from those persons who it thinks have gone illegally to Cuba. As tens of thousands go to Cuba, enforcement appears sporadic at best. At the point of receiving such a letter, we ask people to contact our office before responding. We do not advise filling out any such form until the traveler has spoken with an attorney.

I am having the attorney I work with at the Center send you a draft of a travel booklet we have prepared. In addition, you are free to list our names and numbers for those who get notices from Treasury. As I said, we will gladly represent all at no cost. We hope it is the beginning of the end of these pernicious restrictions on the constitutional rights of all Americans to travel and fish where they wish. – Michael Ratner.

Editor Note: Ratner lists Gabor Rona, Esq. as a contact for the Center for Constitutional Rights.

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