Ana Rodriguez, an 83-year-old who spent 19 years as a political prisoner in Castro’s Cuba and faces losing her Miami home, suffered a setback in court on Tuesday when a judge ruled that her eviction after a bank’s foreclosure is legal.
Judge Peter Lopez said Rodriguez has until August 31 before the sheriff’s office would be able to serve her a writ of possession, forcing her out.
Rodriguez’s home was foreclosed on by the Bank of New York Mellon in 2018. A buyer from California purchased the three-bedroom residence near Southwest Eighth Street and Le Jeune Road in August 2020 for $415,000 and is seeking to evict Rodriguez.
Her lawyer, Bruce Jacobs, who is representing Rodriguez pro bono, says the foreclosure was fraudulent and argues the eviction should not go forward. He says the foreclosure is based on forged documents, including a robo-signed mortgage assignment.
“It is not due process to get a judgment using forgery and perjury,” he said, also alleging a bank destroyed records and misled the court.
Jacobs said he will now appeal Rodriguez’s case to the Third District Court of Appeal before the end of the month in an attempt to stall her removal.
Rodriguez is the longest-detained female political prisoner in Fidel Castro’s Cuba and wrote a memoir titled, “Diary of a Survivor.” She has lived in the home since 1995 and is losing her vision to macular degeneration.
In June, Miami-Dade Mayor Daniela Levine Cava intervened to block Rodriguez’s eviction and Jacobs says they will turn to Levine Cava again and other Florida politicians, including Senator Marco Rubio and Rep. Maria Salazar, to help Rodriguez.