Cuba Arrests American Human Rights Lawyer, Foundation Says

An American human rights lawyer was arrested Friday in Cuba while trying to defend a jailed artist, the Human Rights Foundation said.

Kimberley Motley traveled to Havana to fight for the release of political prisoner Danilo "El Sexto" Maldonado.

The attorney was preparing to hold a news conference outside the National Capitol Building when plainclothes security agents took her away, the organization said.

Motley was arrested alongside dissident punk rock artist Gorki Aguila and activist Luis Alberto Marino. It's unclear what charges they face and their whereabouts are unknown.

Florida congressman Mario Diaz-Balart condemned the arrest. He tweeted, "Arbitrary arrests in #Cuba must end."

President of HRF Thor Halvorssen called Motley's arrest an "outrageous abuse" which he said "is a sad reality of Cuba's ongoing totalitarianism."

Maldonado, better known as "El Sexto", is a popular Cuban artist who has been detained since the death of Fidel Castro. The Miami Herald reports "El Sexto" was jailed after posting a video on Facebook mocking the death of the former Cuban leader.

Motley is an international litigator who currently works in Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates, Ghana, Uganda and the United States.

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