Radio host booted from general’s lawsuit


Miami radio host Martha Flores won’t have to respond to a lawsuit filed by a former Cuban general now living in exile in Miami. A federal judge has removed Flores as a defendant, but her employer, Univision, and other defendants are still waiting to see if the entire lawsuit will be tossed as frivolous.

According to the Miami Herald, US District Judge Ursula Ungaro dismissed the claim of former General Rafael del Pino that Flores had stated on her WAQI-AM “Radio Mambi” show that del Pino should be executed because a tape of the show proved that it was a caller, not Flores, who made the statement. The suit by del Pino also accuses a Bay of Pigs Veterans group, WJAN (Ch. 41) “AmericaTeVe,” an LPTV station, Univision and two of its Miami radio stations and other defendants of making a series of violent threats and intimidating the ex-general with the “intent of chilling” his First Amendment rights. But the defendants claim that it is del Pino’s lawsuit that is really a violation of the First Amendment and that he is off base in trying to stop public criticism of him. del Pino has drawn fire from the Miami Cuban community for his published commentaries calling for the US to open negotiations with interim Cuban leader Raul Castro.

If the entire case is ultimately thrown out, del Pino could face financial consequences. The defendants have filed motions asking the judge to order del Pino to pay their legal expenses for having to defend themselves against a frivolous lawsuit.