A U.S. delegation to Cuba lead by Senator Patrick Leahy has come back empty handed in its attempt to gain the release of American prisoner Alan Gross.
The group arrived on Monday and returned home today, in a visit that also included a visit with Cuban President Raul Castro. Gross, 63, was detained in Havana three years ago in possession of satellite communications equipment he said he was planning to distribute among Cuba’s Jewish community.
The Cuban government viewed Gross’ actions as an effort to destabilize the government and sentenced him to 15-years in prison on charges of crimes against the state. Last year, by unanimous consensus, the U.S. Senate approved a bipartisan resolution demanding that Cuban authorities immediately release Gross.
The delegation also included Senator Jeff Flake, Senator Sherrod Brown, Senator Debbie Stabenow and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse amongst other elected officials from the House. Some of the delegation did meet with Gross in his prison cell but have not reported on what condition they found him in.