The Dodgers' Yasiel Puig is being sued for $12 million by a man currently serving a seven-year prison sentence in Cuba. The man, named Angel Corbacho Daubinot, claims that Puig knowingly made false allegations against him that contributed to his imprisonment.
While Corbacho Daubinot is currently in Cuba, his Miami-based lawyers believe that the U.S. courts have jurisdiction in their client's case. The lawyers argue this case falls under the umbrella of the Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991, which allows civil cases to be filed in the U.S. against people who are under the authority of a foreign nation and commit acts of torture.
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In his complaint, Corbacho Daubinot refers to Puig and his mother as government "informants," based on the 2010 trial that ended in Corbacho Daubinot's prison sentence. Puig and his mother testified in that trial, essentially saying that Corbacho Daubinot plotted Puig's defection from Cuba. Corbacho Daubinot denied (and still denies) ever being involved in Puig's escape, but Cobracho Daubinot was still convicted of human trafficking.
He claims that Puig wanted to show allegiance to the Cuban government and knowingly made false allegations against Corbracho Daubinot to do so. According to the lawsuit, the reason Puig wanted to demonstrate allegiance was so that he could be reinstated into Cuba's top baseball league and national-team program. The suit also said that Puig was suspected of trying to flee the country, which resulted in a demoted to his team's developmental squad.
Corbacho Daubinot is a permanent resident of the Dominican Republic, but because his sentence restricts his freedom to travel, he has not been able to return to his home country in the 3.5 years he's been in prison.
His lawyers claim that his incarceration has caused him to suffer from mental and physical health issues, but they say he is still going to serve the rest of his sentence.
Puig, who defected from Cuba just over a year ago, has been enjoying a successful first two months in the big leagues. In 38 games, the outfielder has hit 3.391 with 8 home runs and a .422 on-base percentage.