USAID contractor Alan Gross was convicted and sentenced to a 15-year prison term for “acts against the independence or territorial integrity of the state.”
I don’t see any sign that a court document has been released, so the closest we have is this Cuban News Agency story. It says that prosecutors established successfully “the direct participation of the U.S. contractor in a subversive project of the United States government to destroy the Revolution through the use of communications systems outside the control of authorities, to promote plans of destabilization against various social sectors.”
The story notes that Mr. Gross has the option of taking his case to Cuba’s Supreme Court. As I understand it, he could seek relief there by arguing that the court made an error of procedure, or of law.
A U.S. spokeswoman in Havana told AP: “We reject and deplore this ruling..It is appalling that the Cuban government seeks to criminalize what most of the world deems normal, in this case access to information and technology.”
USAID’s 2008 warning to contractors and beneficiaries about the conflict between its program and Cuban law is here.