Vivian Mannerud is brave. Please note also the news here about how Florida continues to declare its own foreign policy.
Miami fire 'deliberate', investigators say
Posted By Johannes Werner On April 27, 2012 (8:23 pm) In Top Stories
In a flashback to the violent 1970s and 80s in Miami, state and federal investigators � including FBI agents � were combing through the ashes of a Cuba travel company in the posh suburb of Coral Gables Friday, local TV news reported.
Investigators told the Miami Herald the fire was �deliberate;� the case is under investigation by the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
�It�s not that it�s burned. It�s pulverized,� Vivian Mannerud, owner of Airlines Brokers Co., said about her offices, according to Channel 10 news in Miami. �All I know is that I have never seen a fire do pulverize things. I�ve seen it in pictures of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima.�
According to the Miami Herald, one of the FBI agents interviewing Mannerud is a member of a South Florida counter-terrorism task force.
Mannerud�s profile has been high recently, as her company expanded beyond Miami, offering flights from Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, and shuttling hundreds of U.S. pilgrims to the papal visit in Cuba in late March. The Archdiocese of Miami hired Airline Brokers to transport 300 people from South Florida to the island.
Mannerud says she will rebuild. Photo:WSVN-TV
Mannerud told Channel 10 that she will rebuild the company, which was started by her father in 1982. She said she is not giving up on what she does, and she believes in providing those charter flights to Cuba, according to WSVN-TV Channel 7.
Federal and state investigators with dogs trained to sniff out accelerant arrived on the scene around noon, WSVN reported. Just before noon, the dogs sat down in two different spots, indicating they found something. No official announcements about the investigation have been made.
Fire bombings against Cuba-related businesses and attacks against people deemed close to Cuba were notorious in Miami throughout the 1970s and 80s. The number of terrorist attacks declined during the 1990s; in one of the most recent incidents, the Archdiocese of Miami received bomb threats when Pope John Paul II visited Cuba in 1998.
As investigators were sifting through the gutted Airline Broker office, Florida Gov. Rick Scott appeared on an anti-Castro talk radio program in Miami, announcing he will sign a controversial bill on Tuesday that would prohibit state and local governments to contract companies doing business in Cuba.
A day earlier, officials with the Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Port of Tampa and Tampa International Airport urged the governor not to sign the bill. According to the Miami Herald, the Canadian embassy in Washington had contacted the Florida Chamber of Commerce, saying that Canadian companies might reconsider investing in Florida; Brazilian diplomats reportedly urged the federal government to stop the federal law.
Police dogs detected accelerants, according to TV reports. Photo: WSVN-TV
Article taken from Cuba Standard, your best source for Cuban business news - http://www.cubastandard.com
URL to article: http://www.cubastandard.com/2012/04/27/miami-fire-under-investigation/
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]