White Sox First Baseman: I Ate My Fake Haitian Passport While Being Smuggled From Cuba To USA

The Chicago Tribune reports:

When Chicago White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu finally boarded a plane to the U.S after being smuggled from Cuba to Haiti, he said he had one mission: Destroy the fake Haitian passport he was traveling on before his flight landed in Miami.

He testified Wednesday that he went to the restroom as soon as possible after the flight took off from Haiti. But flight attendants quickly started knocking on the door.

So he ripped out the first page of the passport, which bore his photo and a fake name, and dumped the rest of the passport in the restroom garbage.

“I went back to my seat, I ordered a beer — a Heineken beer — and then, little by little, I swallowed that first page of the passport,” Abreu testified, speaking Spanish translated by a courtroom interpreter.

A Major League Baseball contract with the White Sox — worth $68 million over six years — was riding on Abreu’s ability to enter the U.S. by a deadline in late October 2013, federal prosecutors say.

They called Abreu, 30, of Kendall, to testify in federal court in Miami in the trial of baseball agent Bartolo Hernandez, of Weston, and trainer Julio Estrada, of Miami.

Hernandez and Estrada have pleaded not guilty to allegations they were heavily involved in the shadowy world of illegally smuggling Cuban baseball players to the U.S. for lucrative contracts. The men also helped smuggle the players’ family members and loved ones, according to the indictment.

Abreu reportedly paid the smugglers $5.8 million. He has been given immunity in exchange for his testimony.

  • Kelly Lape

    Baseball be very very good to me.
    – G. Morris

  • bkmn
    • JCF

      Looks good to me!

  • Derrick Johns

    Well, I’m glad you’re here Senior Abreu. You look good to me. Thank God you’re Cuban, not Mexican. If you were Mexican the Trump would try to send you back.

    • bambinoitaliano

      If he can build an ocean wall he would. Don’t count him out on that option yet.

  • Todd20036

    I bet that passport still had more chicken in it than a Subway sandwich

  • Ragnar Lothbrok
    • Lumpy Gaga

      Is that Kelly, head of DHS, with a Trump-cover Fortune magazine and a MAGA hat???

      • JCF

        Sure looks like it.

    • Ragnar Lothbrok
      • Acronym Jim

        Jerry wore it better.

      • Ray Taylor

        I see Spicer is fit. I imagined him to have a few lumps down there.

    • clay

      Remember when VFW would have denounced anyone for disrespecting the flag like that? Then came the bicentennial and the TeaPeople.

      • wmforr

        I remember when they wanted Abbie Hoffman drawn and quartered for dressing in the flag. But Roy Rogers and Dale Evans did it all the time and got a free pass.

    • Bad Tom

      I shudder to imagine the material he used for his underwear.

    • Niblet58

      Fashion sense… he has NONE.

    • DaveW

      I’m really sick of men wearing brown shoes or belts with blue/black/grey suits! What have we come to??????

      My shoes and belts are arranged by color theme. Once I choose shirt and pants for the day, next it’s left side (black) or right side (brown) for belt and shoes.

      If corse watch and cuffkinks also need to match the theme. This is not hard!

      • Ragnar Lothbrok

        LOL, you remind me of someone.

  • Craig S

    Trump has already announced a new border wall that will be built between the US and Cuba… and Cuba will pay for it!

    • Johnny Wyeknot

      I heard he wants to build a trench.

      • Gustav2

        They will string concertina wire between the deep sea oil rigs off the coast of Cuba.

  • coram nobis

    So, what passport or papers did he show when he got to Miami? (The story doesn’t clarify that either). You don’t just walk out of the terminal when you get off an international flight at a U.S. airport; CBP isn’t very easygoing about that.

    It also suggests that nobody saw anything funny about his entry on the passenger list or whatever the airport at Haiti reported on passengers boarding. A flight from Europe certainly would have had comparisons at both ends. Wouldn’t they?

    It suggests at least one big hole in border security. Maybe Port-au-Prince isn’t as punctilious as, say, Amsterdam-Schipol but it still sounds kind of odd.

    • Ragnar Lothbrok

      The $$5.8 mil included the end destination.

      • coram nobis

        He would have needed papers, physical or electronic, waiting at MIA if nothing else. One does not simply walk into Mordor.

        • bambinoitaliano

          Maybe the immigration officers were paid to overlook?

          • Lars Littlefield

            Because of the “feet on the ground” status offered Cubans that was still in force at the time, all he would have to do is show his original Cuban passport, if he still had it. With a Cuban passport and standing on US soil he would have been able to apply for asylum, even though Customs Agents insist you’re not on US soil until you’ve been cleared through customs.

          • clay

            Yep, the fake Haitian passport was to get OUT of Cuba. Once on US soil, he simply requested asylee status. And with an employment sponsor already lined up . . .

          • Lars Littlefield

            Actually, I don’t even think he needed his Cuban passport. Just identifying as a Cuban was enough for a Cuban to receive asylum for 50 years, until last December. I’m thinking of all the refugees who floated to the Florida shores. They didn’t pack Cuban passports with them. Still, it takes a lot of guts and determination to decide on the USA as a final destination. I guess 68 million dollars is enough to whip up guts and determination. Personally, I would have held out for Spain or Canada. 🙂

          • Bad Tom

            Serious question: Can you get rich playing baseball in Spain or Canada?

            Because you certainly can in the USA. Whether that’s a good thing is a different discussion.

          • Lars Littlefield

            If you play for the Toronto Bluejays, I would assume so. As for Spain, it depends upon the league you play for. Baseball was a major sport in the 50s and 60s. Of course, fútbol has eclipsed baseball as it has almost all sports in Spain as well as the rest of the world (except in the USA). When Cuba ceased being a Spanish colony, Cubans who moved to Spain took baseball with them making the sport very popular. I’ve attended several Club Béisbol Viladecans games in Barcelona and Viladecans. It’s surprisingly popular with those who like baseball. Considering the few leagues that exist are supported by very (as in more money than you can believe) rich league owners I suspect one wouldn’t starve playing as a lowly infielder.

        • BobSF_94117

          Cuban citizens, until recently, were treated very differently than others. A hold-over from the bloat flotilla days, they obtain rights to remain and seek immigration just by showing up at the border.

          I assume he had a Haitian passport just to board the plane.

    • barrykyle415

      He’s Cuban. Before late last year, if a Cuban could get a foot on US soil, he/she got to stay in the US. So he likely used his Cuban passport once he got here.

  • Lazycrockett

    Slightly OT but Rachel did a piece last night bout the Muslim ban and protecting citizens and such and the finds from homeland security was that it WASNT the refugees or illegals that were radicalized it was the children of the. Which says a lot more bout how this country treats “others” than it says bout those who come here.

    • Chris Baker

      I didn’t hear it, but I assume some of it having to do with children of [non-white] immigrants facing discrimination and that results in anger against the county. “My parents risked everything to get out of their horrible country to get themselves and their children a better life, and now I am being bullied and harassed here”. It’s would make sense.

  • clay

    Jared Kushner is a potential part-owner of the Miami Marlins. I bet he’s NOT on the side for more restrictions. If Donny sides with Bannon too often, I wonder if Ivanka / Yael will come to realize that Daddy’s kind of a dick?

    • TexasBoy

      I can’t imagine Ivanka not think Daddy’s a sicko after he said that if he were younger, and she weren’t his daughter, he’d tap that.

      • clay

        Yes, but you weren’t raised to love him.

    • Ha ha, when I heard that the ownership of the Marlins might be changing, I thought “Oh, good, Loria being gone will be good for the league.” When I heard about who else might an owner, I thought “Uh…that’s not an improvement.”

  • greenmanTN

    In the history of nearly every person here there is the story of the ancestor who fled the place of their birth to escape oppression or seek new opportunities. Within the family it might even be a story of courage, hope, and fortunes sought. This is true of Republicans too.
    I’m not calling for open borders, just a humane way to deal with those who already live here.
    Unless of course you are Hispanic, which to the GOP means you are a murderer, a rapist, or a thief here to take advantage of the magnanimity of the Republican Party, for which they are so rightly know for.

    Make no mistake, if these new immigrants voted Republican they would be 100% behind them.

    The Republicans greatest fear: being outnumbered. That really is the source of the Trump movement, whether they acknowledge it or not.