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Judi Lynn

(161,382 posts)
Sat Dec 26, 2015, 04:26 AM Dec 2015

Why a gangster’s grandson can give up hopes of a Cuban Christmas present

Why a gangster’s grandson can give up hopes of a Cuban Christmas present

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Meyer Lansky is booked by New York City detectives in 1958 to be questioned about a gangland slaying. (AP Photo/Matty Zimmerman)
Tim Fernholz
December 25, 2015

Friendlier relations between the United States and Cuba promise lucrative payouts for nearly all involved. US businesses are eager to open up a new market, Cuban citizens are eager to see the end of an embargo and the socialism that held them back from prosperity, and even Cuban officials expect to make a buck managing the transition ahead.

One person who is unlikely to see any riches? Gary Rapoport, the grandson of the infamous gangster Meyer Lansky, who says that his family deserves $8 million in compensation dating back to when Cuba’s new socialist government seized the Riviera, an oceanfront hotel and casino that Lansky opened and the Cuban government still operates.

The US and Cuban governments have begun talks to figure out how they will settle claims on American property was seized after Fidel Castro’s revolution, while Cuba has its own claims of damages due to the US embargo and military invasion of the Bay of Pigs. The US government recognizes $1.9 billion in claims by US individuals and businesses against Cuba, plus simple interest, while Cuba says it is owed more than $120 billion by the US government. Experts are optimistic that a grand bargain could square these claims and move the US to end the embargo.

But the Lansky heirs are likely out of luck, because their ancestor helped screw up the US-Cuban relationship to begin with. Lansky was one of a number of US crime figures who set up operations in Cuba—yes, that Cuba meeting scene in The Godfather Part II really happened—and helped turn the country into a gambling mecca. That involved extensive bribes to the country’s autocratic leader, Fulgencio Batista, who made Lansky his officially salaried “gambling advisor.”


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Why a gangster’s grandson can give up hopes of a Cuban Christmas present (Original Post) Judi Lynn Dec 2015 OP
I hope the Cuban Government goes after Lansky's heirs. marble falls Dec 2015 #1
He was just a small businessman, plying his trade. Hoppy Dec 2015 #2
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