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Scott and Kristen Haynes Daring Escape: Landed at Punta Gorda with 12 Cuban Refugees

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"That was brutal," exclaimed Scott Haynes as he disembarked the home made raft constructed from garbage found at the Guantanamo Bay land fill. No sooner had Scott mentioned "I could really use a Salva Vida right about now," was he handed an ice cold one from the local Garifuna villagers gathering around the landing site. Kristen Haynes, Scott's wife, was no worse for wear. "I always knew we'd make it back home -- just got to trust in the Universe."

Scott and Kristen Haynes had been imprisoned for failing to file tax returns and pay over $800,000 assessed by the IRS while living in Roatan -- apparently an American must pay the US government for the rest of his life, wherever he lives, even if he no longer resides in the US, and asks for nothing from the US government at all. No other country lays claim to earnings of citizens who no longer live in their home country -- however, many Americans are surprised to discover that once they have expatriated to another country, the IRS still insists on taxing their income abroad. "I told them to leave me alone! Show me the law where I have to keep paying taxes to the IRS forever -- enough is enough."

But Scott Haynes and wife Kristen were pulled off an airplane after landing in Miami during their last trip to the States to visit grandchildren. They were promptly whisked away to Guantanamo Bay detention facility as potential terrorists for questioning federal laws -- apparently it is now a crime to question US government authority -- those that use the word 'Constitution' are automatically put on US 'watch' lists. Frequent attempts at water-boarding the couple yielded no results as the Haynes' were seasoned surfers. "I've been through a lot worse wiping out in Baja."

After nearly a year in confinement, opportunity presented itself to the Haynes during a routine prison transport when one of the detainees yelled, "ALLAH AKBAR!" and exploded in a bloody mess. Apparently the terrorist had swallowed a large amount of vinegar and baking soda, and with the resulting bouncing down Cuban roads turned him into a human time bomb. During the confusion, Scott and Kristen managed to elude authorities in a garbage dump where they met several others living in the land fill.

Scott rallied their new found friends and set about in Junk-Yard-Wars-fashion to build a boat. By night fall, their makeshift skiff set sail. Knowing that the US was no safe haven for tax refugees, the Haynes navigated their small craft through the Caribbean to the tropical sanctuary of Roatan. Scott recalled, "I have been sailing since I was a kid, and having an intimate knowledge of the stars, Kristen was able to keep us pointed in the right direction."

Scott and Kristen landed off the coast of Punta Gorda, five days later with a dozen Cuban refugees who gleefully kissed the ground once safely upon Roatan shores. However, they soon realized that conditions on Roatan were not that much different than Cuba and hopped back into their water craft to search for a place with better infrastructure.

Soon reunited with their loving family, the Haynes returned to their home in West End, and what a surprise it was to find Scott jamming again at Rick's Cafe with his daughter Harmony. "I guess we will stick around here for a while," Scott said. Kristen holds no grudges, "It was a tremendous learning experience for me, I really got a chance to deepen my self-awareness. Everything always works out for the best."

Unfortunately, Rick's Cafe did not have the proper license for live music and Scott Haynes was fined 500 lempiras. "Ah, Roatan, it's good to be home."
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