Former U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia, Manuel Rocha, found himself in legal trouble when he was arrested in Miami last week. The 73-year-old diplomat is facing charges of being a secret agent working for the Cuban government. Rocha is expected to appear in court on Monday to answer to these serious allegations.
The case against Rocha, brought forward by the U.S. Justice Department, claims that he was actively promoting the interests of the Cuban government. Federal law dictates that individuals carrying out political activities on behalf of foreign governments within the United States must register with the Justice Department. Rocha allegedly failed to comply with this requirement.
Rocha’s extensive diplomatic career spanned 25 years, during which he served under both Democratic and Republican administrations. He spent a significant portion of his career in Latin America, particularly during the Cold War era. Rocha held diplomatic posts in countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, Italy, Honduras, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic.
One notable incident involving Rocha took place during the 2002 presidential race in Bolivia. At that time, he issued a warning to voters that the U.S. would withdraw assistance if Evo Morales, a former coca grower, were to be elected as president of Bolivia.
Following his retirement from the State Department, Rocha ventured into various business roles. He held the position of president at a gold mine in the Dominican Republic and held senior positions in companies operating in the coal and cannabis industries.
Rocha’s wife declined to comment on the situation when approached by the press. The Justice Department has provided limited information on the case so far, and it remains unclear whether Rocha has legal representation at this time. The upcoming court appearance is expected to shed more light on the charges against him.