lunes, 12 de septiembre de 2011

Pedro Albizu Campos: dos actos de la tragedia de un procer


"...The prostitution of a judicial system for the accomplishment of criminal ends involves an element of evil to the State which is not found in frank atrocities which do not sully judicial robes."
U.S.A. v. Alstoetter, et. al. (juicios de Nuremburgo)


Una tragedia es una obra dramática cuya acción presenta conflictos que mueven a la comprensión de la naturaleza del ser humano, a la compasión y al espanto, con el fin de purificar las pasiones y emociones de la audiencia y llevarlo a considerar el enigma del destino y la historia en la cual la pugna entre libertad y necesidad termina generalmente en un desenlace funesto.

Género teatral originario de la Antigua Grecia, es inspirado en los ritos y las representaciones sagradas. La tragedia clásica es una de sus mayores contribuciones al acervo cultural de la Humanidad.

El argumento de la tragedia es la caída de un personaje central y fundamental: el protagonista principal. El motivo creativo es el mismo que el de la épica, es decir el mito, pero desde el punto de vista de la narración, la tragedia desarrolla el mito enriquecido con pasajes históricos y conjugado con la acción dramática. El público, el pueblo, ve con sus propios ojos personajes, escenas y relatos que retratan su propia dimensión psicológica y verdades sociales.

La vida de Pedro Albizu Campos es tal vez nuestro máximo Opus trágico.

He escogido dos trozos de su vida que claramente ejemplifican el asedio de la injustica y la aberración de la ética que descendió sobre su vida de patriota.

Como puedo adelantarles son siquiera dos episodios cruentos que por cierto revelan conflictos aun sin esclarecerse a plenitud. Tal vez no son los episodios más importantes, ese criterio lo dejo en sus manos como parte de la construcción de la obra completa de esta épica puertorriqueñísima en proceso.

Primer acto.

Lo arbitrario del Tratado de París y lo inconstitucional de las decisiones del Congreso sobre el gobierno militar y colonial que estableció en Puerto Rico son argumentos que se presentaron primeramente en la novela prohibida por la censura 'Redentores’ de Zeno Gandía, publicada en 1925, un poco más de una década luego es la controversia fundamental tras el caso Velázquez v. People of Puerto Rico 77 F 2nd. 431, (1935) expediente 2923 (Federal Reporter 1935: 436-439).

Pedro Albizu Campos es el abogado de defensa y apelante en dicho proceso y expresa como argumento contra los cargos a Velázquez problemas de jurisdicción dentro del sistema colonial imperante.

Debido a lo ilegal del Tratado de París y la Ley Orgánica, establece la diferencia entre "el Pueblo de Puerto Rico y la nación puertorriqueña cuyos derechos son inalienables." (Albizu Campos II, 1981: 101). Dicho tema se discutía a cabalidad desde principio del Siglo XX pero fue Albizu Campos como jurista quien lo aglutina, organiza y radica en un caso que llega a sus máximas consideraciones procesales.


Pero veamos las circunstancias en que se da este proceso legal que ciertamente es de las pocas ocasiones (sino la única) que un abogado puertorriqueño en alzada contra el Supremo de la isla acude al foro federal y gana. Veremos que en este hecho se esconden las semillas de posteriores injusticias contra Albizu Campos como abogado postulante y como ciudadano libre.

Pedro Albizu Campos y la prensa colonial. El 24 de septiembre había estallado una huelga como respuesta por la suspensión de 138 universitarios que criticaron en la prensa el despido injustificado de empleados del sistema por motivaciones políticas. Albizu Campos acusó al periódico de estar al servicio del Gobierno por haber condenado a dos líderes estudiantiles que militaban en el Partido Nacionalista: Eugenio Font Suárez y Gilberto Concepción de Gracia. La implicación era que la empresa periodística era financiada por el gobierno colonial. El Mundo respondió con una campaña en contra de la imagen pública de Albizu Campos.

El 16 de abril de 1932, conmemoran el Natalicio de José De Diego en la Plaza Baldorioty. En medio del discurso Albizu Campos invitó a la multitud a ir al Capitolio. Cerca de 800 personas, de acuerdo con los informes de la prensa, caminaron de la Plaza Baldorioty al Capitolio. Penetraron al Capitolio por la banda sur. El edificio, que estaba en reparaciones y el forcejeo entre nacionalistas y elementos de la Policía Insular, produjo el derrumbe de una baranda y la muerte del joven Manuel Rafael Suárez Díaz. El acto produjo el primer arresto contra Albizu Campos. Albizu Campos fue encontrado posteriormente no culpable del delito de incitación a motín.

El episodio generó brotes esporádicos de violencia en los días siguientes.

El hecho más difundido fue la agresión de Luis F. Velázquez, nacionalista de Ponce, al Juez Presidente del Tribunal Supremo Emilio del Toro y Cuebas el 15 de junio de 1932. Las leyendas sobre la polémica son múltiples. Algunas fuentes alegan que fue un acto premeditado entre Albizu Campos y Velázquez, otros lo usan para demostrar la capacidad jurídica del abogado e incluso se alude al mismo como la demostración de la ilegalidad del sistema colonial.

Los hechos incuestionables son que Velázquez abofeteó a Toro y Cuebas en terrenos del Tribunal Federal por una afrenta del juez anexionista a la bandera nacional. En esos momento el debate por la bandera era una controversia muy apasionada, enfrentados a los intentos de arrancar de raíz los valores puertorriqueñistas los defensores de lo boricua reaccionaban tal cual la lucha por la sobreviviencia cultural era: visceral, emocional, cosa de orgullo patrio. Velázquez, periodista destacado, militante nacionalista, previo colaborador de Muñoz Rivera, además era un empresario destacado. Velázquez fue arrestado por la Policía Insular y procesado por los Tribunales de Puerto Rico, sin embargo el alegado delito había sido cometido en jurisdicción federal. Las contradicciones de las ilegalidades del Tratado de París afloraron como punto de controversia.

La teoría legal que presenta Albizu Campos anticipa al estado del Derecho internacional por medio siglo. Pedro Albizu Campos logra establecer que la fruta del acto de la invasión militar de un país soberano era debatible ya que podía ser anulable y dejado sin efecto. Albizu desarrolló y probó el reto legal al sistema judicial en el caso de Luis F. Velázquez en 1935, décadas ante que las Naciones Unidas aprobaran la resolución 1514 del derecho de las colonias y naciones a la autodeterminación. Desde entonces, ese derecho de cuestionar la legitimidad y validez de una decisión jurídica de un sistema judicial funda teóricamente un capítulo nuevo del Derecho internacional, y se convierte en lo que se conoce como una “norma perentoria”. Una “norma perentoria” ata universalmente, no a base a estatutos y tratados, pero porque representa un consenso entre todas las naciones civilizadas sobre un asunto fundamental. Los ciudadanos y los pueblos tienen derecho de cuestionar las leyes que los rigen, y este derecho no desaparece sino que se exacerba cuando interactúan sistemas judiciales diferentes.

La misma esencia incierta y colonial del Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico le otorgaba validez a la impugnación que presentó Albizu Campos, contradictorio, definitivamente perplejo para los jueces serviles que eran nombrados por el gobierno norteamericano, su jurisdicción era limitada por criterio de definición estricta.


Para subsanar esta deficiencia hemos publicado copia 'ad verbatim' del texto al final de esta publicación.

Albizu Campos consiguió la absolución de Velázquez sobre la base de “falta de jurisdicción” al momento del arresto por encima del Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico.

(Bingham:) "The judgment of the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico is vacated, and the cause is remanded to that court, with directions to dismiss the action for want of jurisdiction."- (77 F.2d 431 (1935))

Como veremos el Juez Presidente Toro Cuebas no ha de perdonar, ni olvidar mucho menos, la bofetada ni el desempeño genial de Albizu Campos que lo ridiculiza como jurista.


“Entre usted y yo, (le diré que) estos hombres me parecieron presos políticos. Después de estudiar sus casos, creo que no tuvieron ni tan siquiera un juicio justo” expresa el último gobernador estadounidense de Puerto Rico, Rexford G. Tugwell, en una carta dirigida al secretario del Interior, Harold Ickes, el 8 de enero de 1946. Tugwell se refería al juicio federal celebrado en 1936 contra el doctor Pedro Albizu Campos, Juan Antonio Corretjer y el liderato nacionalista, cuyo desenlace los enfrentó a una larga sentencia de cárcel de diez años en Estados Unidos.Tugwell ha sido el gobernador (1941-1946) más distinguido de Puerto Rico a pesar de ser un funcionario impuesto: economista, profesor universitario y un verdadero intelectual por sus méritos y compromisos con la justicia social.

En tan solo un año Pedro Albizu Campos se habría de enfrentar con las maquinaciones ilícitas del sistema judicial colonial y federal que enmarañados y obcecados habrían de tenderle una trampa valiéndose de artimañas, manejos turbios y evidencias falsas.


El 4 de marzo de 1936 Albizu Campos se presentó voluntariamente al Tribunal federal para indagar sobre los rumores de su posible arresto. El fiscal federal, Cecil Snyder, lo negó. Pero al día siguiente la Corte de Distrito de Estados Unidos expidió una orden de arresto contra Albizu Campos y el alto liderato del Partido Nacionalista. Los cargos fueron de sedición (intentar derrocar el gobierno a la fuerza y mediando violencia).

Luego de que la fiscalía presentara las pruebas en el juicio, el 19 de julio el jurado declaró que no pudieron ponerse de acuerdo en ninguno de los cargos, por lo que el juez Robert Cooper lo disolvió. Los siete puertorriqueños votaron por la absolución total y los cinco estadounidenses por la culpabilidad en todos los cargos.

Inmediatamente se asignó un nuevo juicio para el 27 de julio. En esta ocasión el jurado quedó compuesto por diez estadounidenses y dos puertorriqueños. Los acusados protestaron por la forma en que se seleccionó el jurado de este nuevo juicio. No se notificó a la defensa para que presenciara el sorteo y se alegó que la ley exigía que la selección se hiciese en sala y en sesión pública. Todos los planteamientos de la defensa fueron declarados sin lugar.


El 31 de julio, cuando el jurado pronunció el veredicto de culpabilidad, el juez Cooper leyó la sentencia inmediatamente sin dar tiempo a la defensa para radicar una moción de solicitud de un nuevo juicio.El congresista estadounidense, Vito Marcantonio, llegó a Puerto Rico el 1 de agosto y se incorporó al equipo de la defensa junto a Gilberto Concepción de Gracia. Se radicó una petición de un nuevo juicio. La petición de Marcantonio fue denegada.

Al fracasar las apelaciones (incluyendo una carta a puño de Ernest Hemingway a favor de la libertad de Albizu Campos, Corretjer y los otros líderes nacionalistas), finalmente el 7 de junio de 1937, Albizu Campos, junto al liderato del Partido Nacionalista, fue trasladado a la penitenciaría de Atlanta para servir la larga condena.

El 8 de junio de 1937 el fiscal Snyder solicitó al Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico que cancelara la licencia de Albizu Campos para postular como abogado ante las cortes de Puerto Rico. El 25 de junio el Tribunal Supremo ordenó su desaforo.Toro Cuebas era el Juez Presidente, existiendo claras circunstancias que justificaban que se abstuviera de ver la petición por evidentes conflictos de interés y prejuicios, el 25 de junio de 1937 autorizó el desaforo de Albizu.

Notas del programa.- El conflicto de intereses se refiere a una situación que tiene el potencial de minar la imparcialidad de una persona debido a la posibilidad de un choque entre su interés propio y sus responsabilidades profesionales y en representación del interés público. Una situación en la cual la responsabilidad ética limita su capacidad de descargar su responsabilidad relacionado a una segunda o tercera persona se define como inadmisible. La normativa en la profesión judicial establece el estándar al más alto nivel de exigencias y transparencia moral lo que significa que debe excluirse de participar en procesos adjudicativos cualquier oficial de la corte que incumpla siquiera un asomo de parcialidad, prejuicio o ataduras personales, se multiplica lógicamente esta exigencia en figura del magistrado y del juez. Se supone impugnable un proceso donde se pueda probar mínimamente la existencia del conflicto de interés, escenario que puede incidar en serios delitos en ciertos momentos por sus repercusiones e implicaciones. ROF

Narrador desde el foro.- El desaforo de Albizu nunca ha sido levantado a pesar de todas las investigaciones históricas y sus repercusiones. El Colegio de abogados ha solicitado que sea reintegrado posmortem y el Tribunal Supremo ha denegado la petición.

(Fin del primer acto/ Favor ver resolución al final.)


Segundo acto (breve).

En 1951 Albizu Campos nuevamente fue enjuiciado y sentenciado a no menos de 12 años de prisión por violar la Ley de la Mordaza con discursos ofrecidos entre 1948 y 1950. Se refiere a discursos pronunciados en celebración del Grito de Lares. La Mordaza prohibe un claro ejercicio de la 1era enmienda, por ende podemos deducir que los derechos contitucionales no aplicaban de facto. El Secretario de Justicia era Trías Monge que luego públicamente reconoce su error. Encarcelamiento fue estatal (La Princesa).

De este encarcelamiento del que el mismo Albizu Campos atestiguaba ser víctima de torturas mediante radiaciones, Pedro Albizu Campos sale a morir.

(Fin del segundo acto.)



Carl J. Friedrich, profesor de Harvard, uno de los principales teóricos políticos del mundo de la posguerra y participante en la redacción de la Constitución del ELA, comentó en 1959 que las agencias federales:
“…affect the life of every Puerto Rican every day of his life. The fact that all these activities are carried forward by officials appointed without the consent of Puerto Rico, that the policies which they express are adopted without the consent of Puerto Rico, indicates the severe limit within which autonomy is at present defined”.


Addendum:

Primer item:

VELAZQUEZ v. PEOPLE OF PUERTO RICO
77 F.2d 431 (1935)
Circuit Court of Appeals, First Circuit.
April 12, 1935.
P. Albizu Campos, of San Juan, P. R., for appellant.
William Cattron Rigby, of Washington, D. C. (Benjamin J. Horton, Atty. Gen., and Nathan R. Margold, Solicitor for Department of the Interior, of Washington, D. C., of counsel), for the People of Puerto Rico.
Before BINGHAM, WILSON, and MORTON, Circuit Judges.

BINGHAM, Circuit Judge.
This is an appeal from a judgment of the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico affirming a judgment of the District Court of San Juan sentencing the defendant, appellant, to a year imprisonment and the payment of costs; it having found him guilty of the crime of aggravated assault and battery.

The assault was committed upon the person of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico while in his private office on the second floor of the Santo Domingo Barracks. This building is located in the city of San Juan, and on the second floor are also rooms used by the Supreme Court and the District Courts of San Juan for court purposes.

The prosecution was had under the Puerto Rican statute of March 10, 1904 (Revised Statutes and Codes of Porto Rico, p. 908), sections 6 and 8 of which provide:
"(5664) Sec. 6. An assault and battery becomes aggravated when committed under any of the following circumstances:
"1. When committed upon an officer in the lawful discharge of the duties of his office, if it was known or declared to the offender that the person assaulted was an officer discharging an official duty;
"2. When committed in a court of justice, or in any place of religious worship, or in any place where persons are assembled for the purpose of innocent amusement. * * *"
"(5666) Sec. 8. The punishment for an aggravated assault, or aggravated assault and battery, shall be a fine of not less than fifty nor more than one thousand dollars, or imprisonment in jail not less than one month nor more than two years, or by both such fine and imprisonment."

The chief contention of the defendant appellant is that the place where the assault occurred was under the exclusive jurisdiction of the United States; that the alleged assault, if a violation of law, was a violation of the laws of the United States, and that the local courts of Puerto Rico had no jurisdiction over crimes or offenses committed in that place.

Although this question was raised for the first time in the Supreme Court, that court entertained the question and held that the insular laws, not the laws of the United States, applied; that the insular courts had jurisdiction; and affirmed the conviction. In so doing it took judicial notice of the acts of Congress, the acts of the Puerto Rican Legislature, the decisions of its courts, and of one in the federal District Court of Puerto Rico in the case of United States v. Iglesias, 13 Porto Rico Fed. Rep. 282, where, in the opinion of the court, is a careful statement of facts relating to the question. That case was decided January 23, 1924. The crime there charged was murder committed in the same building. There was then and is now a stairway leading from the ground floor to the second floor of the building where the Supreme Court and the District Courts are held. The accused was on the stairway and his victim was ascending it and fell in the hallway at the head of the stairs upon being shot. He was indicted in the insular District Court of San Juan and also in the federal District Court. In that case the defendant was represented by counsel, the United States District Attorney and a member of the Judge Advocate's Department of the United States Army represented the United States, and the people of Puerto Rico appeared as amicus curiæ by its Attorney General and Assistant Attorney General. On the facts there agreed upon (of which no doubt the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico in the instant case took judicial notice), the federal District Court held that the United States had the exclusive jurisdiction over the place and the crime there committed, and that the offense charged was one to be heard and determined by that court.

It is evident from this conflict of authority between the local and federal courts of the Island that the question involved is one of importance and should now be set at rest.

The building in question, long known as the Santo Domingo Barracks, was in existence on the 10th day of December, 1898, when the Treaty of Paris was entered into by which the government of Spain ceded to the United States the Island of Porto Rico and certain adjacent islands, and comprised a part of the property then ceded to the United States. Before that it had been occupied by the Spanish authorities as a public building. The Spanish Territorial Court, the Audiencia Territorial, and other courts of that period were held there and in substantially the same quarters now occupied by the Island courts. Prior to thecession of the Island by Spain, the United States, through its military authorities, on or about August 12, 1898, took possession of this building and other public buildings and property and used them as instrumentalities of the federal government. Civil courts were established for the Island under General Orders issued by the military authorities of the United States; and these courts, at the sufferance of the military authorities, occupied the same quarters. The ground floor was and is now occupied by the military authorities.

By the Act of Congress of April 12, 1900 (31 Stat. 77) known as the Foraker Act, Congress established a government for the Island of Porto Rico and the adjacent islands of a territorial nature and vested judicial power in the courts and tribunals previously established by the military orders. The only change in the courts made by this act was the establishment of a federal District Court to take the place of the United States provisional court previously established under military orders. This act made no provision for court quarters in San Juan or the other places where the courts were to be held.

From the time this building was taken over by the military authorities in August, 1898, it remained under the control of the federal government down to as late as July 1, 1902, if not later, as did all the other property acquired from Spain, except to the extent that such other property, after the establishment of the insular government on May 1, 1900, may have become subject to the temporary control of that government under section 13 of the Act of Congress of April 12, 1900 (48 USCA § 747 note). On July 1, 1902, Congress passed an act entitled, "An Act Authorizing the President to reserve public lands and buildings in the island of Porto Rico for public uses, and granting other public lands and buildings to the government of Porto Rico, and for other purposes," section 1 (32 Stat. 731, see 48 USCA § 746) of which reads as follows:

"That the President be, and he is hereby, authorized to make, within one year after the approval of this Act, such reservation of public lands and buildings belonging to the United States in the island of Porto Rico, for military, naval, light-house, marine-hospital, post-offices, custom-houses, United States courts, and other public purposes, as he may deem necessary, and all the public lands and buildings, not including harbor areas and navigable streams and bodies of water and the submerged lands underlying the same, owned by the United States in said island and not so reserved be, and the same are hereby, granted to the government of Porto Rico, to be held or disposed of for the use and benefit of the people of said island: Provided, That said grant is upon the express condition that the government of Porto Rico, by proper authority, release to the United States any interest or claim it may have in or upon the lands or buildings reserved by the President under the provisions of this Act: And provided further, That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to affect any legal or equitable rights acquired by the government of Porto Rico or by any other party, under any contract, lease, or license made by the United States authorities prior to the first day of May, nineteen hundred."

It appears in the opinion of the Supreme Court in this case, and in the opinion in the Iglesias Case, that, pursuant to the power given by the Act of July 1, 1902, and within one year thereof, the President, in June, 1903, reserved for military purposes certain lands with the buildings thereon, including the Santo Domingo Barracks. See, also, Roman Catholic Church v. People of Porto Rico, 11 Porto Rico at pages 488, 489.

February 16, 1903, the Legislature of Porto Rico passed an act entitled, "An Act Authorizing the Governor of Porto Rico to convey certain lands to the United States for naval, military, and other public purposes." Revised Statutes and Codes of Porto Rico, pp. 321, 322, §§ 1670-1677. Sections 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6 of which read as follows:
"Section 1. That the Governor of Porto Rico be, and he is hereby authorized in his discretion and in the name of The People of Porto Rico to convey to the United States for naval, military or other public purposes all the right, title and interest of the people of Porto Rico or of any municipality thereof in and to all public lands in the island of Culebra, together with the shores thereof and any public buildings thereon, or in and to so much thereof as may now or hereafter be desired by the United States for such purposes, and in and to any and all roads, streets or highways or other public property in said island of Culebra belonging to The People of Porto Rico or to any municipality thereof; together with all rights, easements, benefits and privileges thereunto appertaining.
"Sec. 2. That the Governor of Porto Rico be and he is hereby, authorized in his discretionand in the name of The People of Porto Rico to convey to the United States for naval, military, or other public purposes all the right, title and interest of The People of Porto Rico or of the municipality of San Juan in and to any or all public lands in the Puntilla in the harbor of San Juan, together with the shores thereof and any public buildings thereon, or in and to so much thereof as may now or hereafter be desired by the United States for such purposes, and in and to any streets or highways or other public property therein belonging to The People of Porto Rico or to the said municipality; together with all rights, easements, benefits and privileges thereunto appertaining. * * *
"Sec. 4. That the Governor of Porto Rico be and he is hereby authorized in the name of The People of Porto Rico to release any interest or claim that The People of Porto Rico may now have or may hereafter acquire in and upon any lands or buildings belonging to the United States in the Island of Porto Rico which may be reserved by the President of the United States for public uses under and by virtue of the power vested in him under the terms of an act of the Congress of the United States entitled `An act authorizing the President to reserve public lands and buildings in the Island of Porto Rico for public uses and granting other public lands and buildings to the Government of Porto Rico, and for other purposes,' approved July first, nineteen hundred and two.
"Sec. 5. That consent be and is hereby given to the United States to acquire for naval, military or other public purposes, by purchase or condemnation, any lands within the Island of Porto Rico, and when so acquired and possession thereof shall have been taken by the United States, all jurisdiction over such lands by The People of Porto Rico shall cease and determine: Provided, however, That upon the subsequent alienation by the United States of any land so acquired The People of Porto Rico shall again have jurisdiction thereover.
"Sec. 6. That exclusive jurisdiction be and is hereby ceded to the United States over any and all lands that may hereafter be acquired by it in the Island of Porto Rico by purchase or condemnation; and over any and all lands and the shores thereof, including streets and other public highways, conveyed to it by the Governor of Porto Rico under the provisions hereof; and over any and all lands in which any interest or claim of The People of Porto Rico may hereafter be released to the United States by the Governor of Porto Rico as provided herein: Provided, however, That in and over any lands acquired by or conveyed under the terms hereof to the United States, in the island of Culebra, The People of Porto Rico shall retain a concurrent jurisdiction with the United States over offenses committed within the limits of the lands so conveyed, such jurisdiction however to be exercised only upon the complaint of the officer of the Navy or other officer of the United States in charge thereof." (Italics supplied.)

Thus far it does not appear that the Governor of Porto Rico has released any interest the people of Porto Rico may have had in or claim to any lands or buildings belonging to the United States in the Island and reserved by the President, which release, under the Act of July 1, 1902 (48 US CA § 746), is made the express condition under which title should vest in the people of Porto Rico in or to "all the public lands and buildings, not including harbor areas and navigable streams and bodies of water and the submerged lands underlying the same, owned by the United States in said island and not so reserved"; nor that the people of Porto Rico had any interest, legal or equitable, in the Barracks; and, as that government did not come into existence until May 1, 1900, it could not have acquired any interest, legal or equitable, from the United States in the Barracks "prior to the first day of May, nineteen hundred," under the second proviso of section 1 of the Act of July 1, 1902, as the court below seems to intimate.

In 1904, the Roman Catholic Church brought suit against the people of Porto Rico (11 Porto Rico, 466) and at pages 492, 493, the following appears:

"Ever since the American occupation of the Island of Porto Rico claims have been made by the Roman Catholic Church, or by some of its members on its behalf, to certain lands, buildings and other property, situated in Porto Rico and in the possession of the American Government. Efforts were continually being made to induce the Government, both here and at Washington, to recognize these claims. After many plans had been discussed and rejected, finally the Insular Legislatures, on the 10th of March, 1904, passed a statute conferring on theSupreme Court of Porto Rico original jurisdiction for the trial and adjudication of all questions between the church and the people affecting property rights, whether real, personal or mixed, claimed by either party. Power was conferred on this court, by said act, to issue process for witnesses, and to receive and hear testimony; and direction was given to use the same procedure, as near as might be, as that prescribed for the district courts in civil cases, full power being conferred on the court to enter any and all orders and decrees that might be necessary to a final and full adjudication of all the claims of either party to the proceedings, authorizing the issue of all writs or process necessary to enforce the jurisdiction therein conferred upon this court. * * * An appeal was reserved to each of the parties to the Supreme Court of the United States as in other cases. * * * See Session Acts of Porto Rico of 1904, pp. 134 and 135."

It further appears from the above-cited case that, under this Act of 1904, the Roman Catholic Bishop of Porto Rico filed a complaint against the people of Porto Rico in the Supreme Court of the Island on the 6th of June, 1904, asking that the defendant be adjudged "to return to the Roman Catholic Apostolic Church in this Island as properties seized by the Government of the Island from the religious communities of Dominicans and Franciscans suppressed under the laws issued in Spain relating to the secularization of church property, the building known by the name of the Convent of San Francisco, situated on the square of that name in this city [San Juan]; * * * the lots occupied by the market place and the streets adjacent thereto, and those occupied by the insane asylum"; also "the Convent of Santo Domingo [Santo Domingo Barracks] with the lands appurtenant thereto, as well as the lots upon which Ballaja Barracks is located." It further appears in that case that the Convent of San Francisco and the lands pertaining thereto were acquired at an early day by the religious community known as San Franciscans, and that the Convent of Santo Domingo and the lands appurtenant thereto were likewise acquired at an early day by the religious community of Dominicans; that the title to the property of the Dominican Friars was acquired by them from Juan Ponce de Leon, "the conqueror and first populator of the Island"; that in the year 1838 the religious communities of Dominican and Franciscan Friars were suppressed by the Spanish government and their property seized under the so-called laws of secularization of church property published in Spain; that the properties so held by them were the exclusive properties of the Roman Catholic Church in accordance with the provisions of Concordats concluded with the Holy See in the years 1851 and 1859; that the Spanish government in Porto Rico never returned the property but retained the same in its possession until the change of sovereignty in the Island; and that the same subsequently passed, under the Treaty of Paris, to the government of the United States.

All the property in question in that suit the Supreme Court held belonged to the Church, and that all of it, with the exception of the Convent of Santo Domingo and the lots upon which the Ballajá Barracks were located, should be returned to the Church by Porto Rico, and that it also should make restitution of the "fruits or rents, etc." The Convent of Santo Domingo and the Ballajá Barracks were excepted out of the judgment of restitution because Porto Rico was not in possession and enjoyment of them, they having been reserved by the United States for military purposes, and the government of the United States not being a party to the action. However, the court in its opinion, 11 Porto Rico, at page 489 said:

"But we must say that the evidence heard in this action also shows that said Convent of Santo Domingo with the lands appurtenant thereto, as well as the lots upon which Ballajá Barracks is located, are the property of the Roman Catholic Apostolic Church, and that only upon a technical ground, strengthened by the respect we have for a decision of the President of the United States, we will not make the same pronouncement with regard to said property — that is to say, that it be returned to the Catholic Church, together with the other property sought to be recovered in this action."

In this situation, and while appeals to the Supreme Court of the United States were pending, in order to clear up the matter, on August 12, 1908, "an agreement was entered into * * * by a commission consisting of two persons appointed by the President of the United States, two persons representing the Roman Catholic Church of Porto Rico, and two persons representing The People of Porto Rico, appointed by the governor thereof, intended as a basis of settlementof all matters of dispute between the Roman Catholic Church in Porto Rico, on the one part, and the United States of America and the People of Porto Rico on the other part, in which it was agreed, among other things, as follows: `The United States to pay the Roman Catholic Church in Porto Rico the sum of $120,000 in full settlement of all claims of every nature whatsoever relative to the properties claimed by the Church, which are now in the possession of the United States, and are specified and described in the judgment rendered by the supreme court of Porto Rico in a certain suit No. 1, brought by the Church against the people of Porto Rico, in the supreme court of Porto Rico, the Church to relinquish all rights and actions regarding said properties, the said properties to belong exclusively to the United States.'" (Italics supplied.) See United States v. Iglesias, supra, 13 Porto Rico Fed. Reports 282 at page 288.

This agreement, as will hereafter appear, was carried out, and, if the people of Porto Rico had any right or claim in or to the lands and buildings reserved by the President, which it had not previously released [People of Porto Rico v. Fortuna Estates (C. C. A.) 279 F. 500, 507-508], it is fairly certain that in 1908, when the Governor, as the duly authorized representative of that government, became a party to this agreement, he thereby released any right, title, or interest the people of Porto Rico had in the properties reserved by the President, including the Santo Domingo Barracks. If at that time the people of Porto Rico had any claim to the properties which it did not intend to part with, it was then called upon to assert it or forever after hold its peace.

By an Act of March 4, 1909 (35 Stat. 1018) Congress appropriated $120,000 to be paid to the Church "in full satisfaction of all claims of every nature whatsoever relative to the properties claimed by the Roman Catholic Church in Porto Rico which are now in the possession of the United States, to wit, the building known as the Santo Domingo Barracksand the land pertaining thereto, and the site of the building formerly known as the Ballaja Barracks, * * * Provided, That the Roman Catholic Church shall guarantee the title to, and shall relinquish all rights and actions regarding said properties, and that the said properties shall belong exclusively to the United States." (Italics supplied.) On May 17, 1909, the $120,000 was paid to the Church and "an act of sale was executed by the Bishop of Porto Rico, conveying to the United States all the rights of the Church of Porto Rico in the Santo Domingo Barracks, otherwise called `Santo Domingo Convent.'"

From the foregoing it appears that the Supreme Court of Porto Rico, after hearing, declared that the Santo Domingo Barracks and the Barracks of Ballajá belonged to the Church, not the people of Porto Rico; and that, after that decision and pending the appeals therefrom, the Governor, through the Commission, two members of which were appointed by him to represent the people of Porto Rico, agreed that, on the Church relinquishing all its rights to the two Barracks, "the said properties" should "belong exclusively to the United States." By so doing the Governor released "any interest or claim that the People of Porto Rico" had in either property (both of which were reserved by the President) within the meaning of section 4 of the Porto Rican Act of February 16, 1903, and the United States thereby acquired exclusive jurisdiction over the same under section 6 of that Act. Then again, viewed from the standpoint that Spain had no title to these properties, as the Supreme Court of Porto Rico held — that the title was in the Catholic Church — then the United States, on purchasing the same in 1909 from the Church, acted within the provisions of sections 5 and 6 of the Act of February 16, 1903, and acquired exclusive jurisdiction over the same.

The money having been paid to, and the deed given by, the Church May 17, 1909, at the opening of the October term, 1909, of the Supreme Court of the United States, to wit, on October 11, 1909, the two appeals pending in that court were "dismissed, per stipulation." See People of Porto Rico v. Roman Catholic Church, 215 U.S. 611, 30 S.Ct. 397, 54 L. Ed. 348.

The government of the people of Porto Rico certainly had no jurisdiction, political or legislative, over the Barracks, the place where the offense was committed, prior to May 1, 1900. First, because the United States, through its military authorities and Congress, had that jurisdiction and control from 1898 to May 1, 1900. There can be no doubt about that. And, second, because the government of Porto Rico did not exist before May 1, 1900, so that it could not have had or exercised any political or legislative control over the Barracks or, for that matter, anywhere in the Island of Porto Rico prior to that date.

The question, therefore, resolves itself down to whether the United States, which had political and legislative control over the people and the territory comprising the Island of Porto Rico and certain adjacent islands, including the Barracks, lost that jurisdiction over the Barracks by the Foraker Act or any other act of Congress, or authority representing the United States. When Congress created the territorial government there in May, 1900, it conferred upon the people of Porto Rico political and legislative control over matters of purely local concern and over certain properties there situated and devoted to designated public uses (section 13 of the Act of April 12, 1900, 48 USCA § 747 note). But the properties there designated (section 13) did not include the Barracks and certain other properties devoted to public uses which, as heretofore shown, are dealt with in the Act of Congress of July 1, 1902.

We have also pointed out that in the Act of July 1, 1902, Congress, in dealing with the properties which were not reserved by the President, turned them over to the government of Porto Rico provided and upon the condition that it release all right or claim it had in any of the properties reserved by the President; that the Legislature of Porto Rico, in 1903, authorized and directed its Governor to release all right and claim to the properties reserved (section 4, Act of February 16, 1903); that the Governor, as early as 1908, if not earlier, released all right or claim therein, if Porto Rico had any; that, under section 6 of the Act of 1903, this release having been given, the United States acquired exclusive jurisdiction over the properties reserved, if it did not have it before and if the Legislature of Porto Rico had any authority to legislate with reference to the reserved properties and the jurisdiction of the United States over them, which is doubtful in the extreme; and, further, if the United States, by the cession of Spain, acquired no title to the Barracks and other properties reserved because the Catholic Church, as the Supreme Court of Porto Rico held, owned those properties, then the United States, when it purchased the Barracks from the Church, acquired exclusive jurisdiction by virtue of sections 5 and 6 of the Act of 1903, if it had not had it ever since the cession of Spain in 1898, which we think it then acquired and has since then kept.

The Supreme Court of Porto Rico, however, apparently entertains the view that, inasmuch as the Supreme Court and the District Courts of San Juan have been permitted by the military authorities of the United States in charge of the Barracks to occupy at sufference the second floor of the building for court purposes, the government of Porto Rico has acquired legislative and political control of the second floor of the building and that its laws extend there and were violated. We do not accede to this view.

If in the District of Columbia the officers of the United States in charge of the treasury building had allowed the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico to occupy at sufference quarters for court purposes and the assault in question had taken place there, could it reasonably be said that the United States had yielded up its exclusive jurisdiction over those quarters and that the legislative powers of the government of Puerto Rico extended there; that the assault was a breach of its laws; and that the alleged offender lawfully could be taken to Puerto Rico and tried first in the Municipal Court of San Juan, then on appeal in the District Court of San Juan, and then on appeal in the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico, as was done here?

In view of the conclusion reached, it is unnecessary to consider the other questions in the case.

The judgment of the Supreme Court of Puerto Rico is vacated, and the cause is remanded to that court, with directions to dismiss the action for want of jurisdiction.

Segundo ítem:

COLEGIO DE ABOGADOS DE PUERTO RICO
Año de Sesiones 2002-2004 Reunión Ordinaria Núm. 9
Resolución Número 33

PARA PERMITIR AL COLEGIO DE ABOGADOS ELEVAR UNA SOLICITUD DE REINSTALACION POSTUMA DEL LCDO. PEDRO ALBIZU CAMPOS AL EJERCICIO DE LA ABOGACÍA EN PUERTO RICO

POR CUANTO: El Colegio de Abogados de Puerto Rico se encuentra activo en la reivindicación de injusticias relacionadas a la profesión jurídica del País. Entre ellas, el Colegio se encuentra promoviendo arduamente legislación a los efectos de allegar más fondos para Pro-Bono, corporación sin fines de lucro creada por este ilustre Colegio de Abogados en junio de 1981, y para la Sociedad de Asistencia Legal.

POR CUANTO: Que estas dos entidades sin lugar a dudas fueron precedidas en objetivos, valores y sacrificios por quien fuera un vivo ejemplo en vida de los servicios que hoy día se ofrecen por medio de estas dos instituciones, El Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos.

POR CUANTO: Que además de dar servicios gratuitos a indigentes del País, la figura de abogado del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos inspiraba un profundo respeto entre colegas y miembros de la sociedad civil por su conducta intachable y vertical, en y fuera de los Tribunales de Puerto Rico.

POR CUANTO: No obstante, el Lcdo. Pedro Albizu Campos fue desaforado a raíz de su convicción criminal federal en 1936 y al día de hoy su nombre aún permanece fuera de las listas de los ilustres abogados que han practicado el derecho en el sistema judicial en Puerto Rico.

POR CUANTO: Que en la última década del siglo pasado y principios del siglo presente el Honorable Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico ha readmitido al ejercicio de la abogacía a abogados que fueron desaforados por haber sido acusados de cometer delitos graves y/o delitos de depravación moral en conexión con el ejercicio de la abogacía.

POR CUANTO: Que al Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos nunca se le desaforó por ninguna de estas dos causas, sino que su desaforo provino dentro de unas circunstancias históricas de represión política y persecución a los luchadores por la independencia de Puerto Rico en esa época.

POR CUANTO: Que en 1991 este Ilustre Colegio de Abogados nombró al Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos miembro honorario del Colegio de Abogados, mediante Resolución Número 9, en el Año de Sesiones 1990-1992, Reunión Ordinaria Número 11.

POR CUANTO: Que al presente existe un grupo de abogados de la practica privada interesados en presentar una solicitud de reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos ante el Honorable Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico.

POR CUANTO: Que fuera de líneas partidistas y de opiniones políticas, el Ilustre Colegio de Abogados de Puerto Rico tiene la obligación moral para con su matrícula y con la memoria del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos de procurar la reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía de quien fuese uno de los máximos exponente de las virtudes de la figura del abogado puertorriqueño, el Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos.

POR TANTO: La Junta de Gobierno del Colegio de Abogados de Puerto Rico resuelve:
Primero: Ordenar a los miembros colegiados y colegiadas interesadas en presentar la solicitud de reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos, a presentar la misma en el mes de julio de 2003 ante esta Junta para su aprobación, antes de someterla ante el Honorable Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico.

Segundo: Exhortar al Honorable Tribunal Supremo de Puerto Rico a considerar la propuesta de reinstalar póstumamente al ejercicio de la abogacía al Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos, estampando su nombre nuevamente en las listas de ilustres abogados que dignamente han servido al Colegio de Abogados y al Pueblo de Puerto Rico.

Tercero: Exhortar a la Honorable Sila María Calderón, Gobernadora del Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico, a que promueva mediante apoyo público la reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos

Cuarto: Exhortar a todos los miembros de la asamblea Legislativa a que brinden su apoyo incondicional y que promuevan mediante apoyo público la reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos, y a que efectúen todas las legislaciones encaminadas a procurar dicho fin.

Quinto: Delegar al Presidente del Ilustre Colegio de Abogados la responsabilidad de realizar todas las gestiones necesarias en las oficinas gubernamentales y judiciales correspondientes para promover, propulsar, y lograr dicho fin: así como cualquier otra gestión encaminada a promover la solicitud de reinstalación póstuma al ejercicio de la abogacía del Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos.

Sexto: Que se envíe copia de esta Resolución a los miembros colegiados y colegiadas que se encuentran trabajando en la solicitud de reinstalación, así como a todas las delegaciones de este Ilustre Colegio.

CERTIFICO: Que la anterior resolución fue aprobada por unanimidad por la Junta de Gobierno en su reunión ordinaria celebrada el 14 de junio de 2003, en Arecibo, Puerto Rico.
Lcdo. José M. Montalvo Trías
Director Ejecutivo


Nota final.- Recomiendo la lectura de:



Redentores. Manuel Zeno Gandía.

Obras completas, Zeno Gandía, M., Tomo 2, San Juan, P.R.: Instituto de Cultura
Puertorriqueña. (1973).

Referente a la obra de Zeno Gandía:


"No he venido a entretener a mi pueblo. No. Yo no soy artista. No quiero aplausos. Oíd bien... es donde está mi deber y nadie debe rehuir de la madre enferma y lisiada porque es entonces cuando necesita más del amor de sus hijos."


1 comentario:

roberto 'pachi' ortiz feliciano dijo...

Reportaje 'El Nuevo día'
Las carpetas y la historia de Pedro Albizu Campos
http://www.elnuevodia.com/lascarpetasylahistoriadepedroalbizucampos-1062934.html

Ideas, visión y filosofía de Pedro Albizu Campos.
http://ortizfeliciano.blogspot.com/2007/07/ideas-vision-y-filosofia-de-pedro.html

Breve historia de la Masacre de Ponce y patrones represivos del FBI en Puerto Rico.
http://ortizfeliciano.blogspot.com/2009/03/breve-historia-de-la-masacre-de-ponce-y.html

Discursos de Pedro Albizu Campos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tbp8bI7Nl0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3oszOEBt5s

discurso 1950 parte 1.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sa34z9Wo8Ho

discurso 1950 parte 2.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=noyBzs6FzvA&feature=watch_response

Documental-Puerto Rico. Documental sobre la vida política del dirigente nacionalista puertorriqueño, don Pedro Albizu Campos, realizado por estudiantes de la Universidad del Sagrado Corazón, Departamento de Comunicación, en 1987. Luego se añadió noticia sobre el centenario (1991).

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4ea6k_don-pedro-albizu-campos-un-hombre-u_shortfilms

Ernesto Che Guevara habla sobre Pedro Albizu Campos en la ONU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQsRfPszRpo&feature=related

Rafael Cancel Miranda habla sobre Pedro Albizu Campos:
parte 1.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQNxw3oIsaE&feature=related

parte 2.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1GtvNzwvuw&feature=related

Episodio de programa "En la punta de la lengua" :
Luis Muñoz Marín y Pedro Albizu Campos: una patria y dos caminos
http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/8054718