Cuban graffiti artist Danilo Maldonado Machado (‘El Sexto’) was released over the weekend. Amnesty International had considered him a prisoner of conscience.
On 21 January Danilo Maldonado Machado (also known as ‘El Sexto’) was released from El Combinado del Este, a maximum-security prison on the outskirts of Havana, the capital.
Danilo Maldonado was arrested at his home in Havana the morning of 26 November 2016, hours after the announcement of Fidel Castro’s death. That same day, Cuba-based newspaper 14 y medio reported that he had graffitied the words “He’s gone” (Se fue) on a wall in Havana. He was detained for almost two months. Danilo Maldonado’s family believes he was accused of damage to state property but have not seen official documents specifying these charges.
Previously, Danilo Maldonado Machado spent almost 10 months in prison without trial following accusations of “aggravated contempt” after being arrested on 25 December 2014 for transporting two pigs with the names “Raúl” and “Fidel” painted on them, which he intended to release in an art show in Havana’s Central Park. He was never formally charged nor brought before a court during the almost 10 months he spent in detention.