Monthly Archives: September 2012

Updates as of 4:40 PM

Around 3:00 PM today, Matt was taken to a contempt of court hearing. The judge decided to make the hearing private instead of public. It is our understanding that this action is unprecedented since the McCarthy Era of political witch hunts. The entire 2nd floor of the Federal Court House in Seattle where the grand jury itself was taking place was closed off to the public as well as the 13th floor where the contempt hearings were taking place. As of this writing, Leah has not been taken to her contempt hearing yet.

As of 4:00 PM, Matt is now in federal custody. He has another hearing scheduled on Wednesday, September 26th. We do not know where is being taken yet, but supporters are still at the court house to support him.

As of 4:30 PM, Leah was released and re-subpoenaed. She does not know the date of her next subpoena.

We are asking for supporters to call Judge Richard Jones in his chambers at 206-370-8870 and demand that Matt not be charged with contempt and be released.

Leah-Lynn Plante’s Statement and Demonstrations in Support of Grand Jury Resisters

My name is Leah-Lynn Plante, and I am one of the people who has been subpoenaed to a secret grand jury, meeting in Seattle on September 13th, 2012.

This will be the second time I have appeared before the grand jury, and the second time I have refused to testify. The first time was on August 2nd. I appeared as ordered and identified myself. I was asked if I would be willing to answer any questions. I said, “No,” and was dismissed after being served a second subpoena.

Over a month later, my answer is still the same. No, I will not answer their questions. I believe that these hearings are politically motivated. The government wants to use them to collect information that it can use in a campaign of repression. I refuse to have any part of it, I will never answer their questions, I will never speak.

It is likely that the government will put me in jail for that refusal.

While I hate the very idea of prison, I am ready to face it in order to stay true to my personal beliefs. I know that they want to kidnap me and isolate me from my friends and my loved ones in an effort to coerce me to speak. It will not work. I know that if I am taken away, I will not be alone. We have friends and comrades all around the world standing behind us, and even though this has been one of the most traumatizing experiences of my life, I have never felt so supported or loved. I can only speak for myself, but I have every faith that the others subpoenaed to these hearings will likewise refuse. And I know that hundreds of people have called the US Attorney demanding that they end this tribunal. Hundreds of organizations, representing thousands of people, signed onto a statement expressing solidarity with those of us under attack and demanding an end to this sort of repression.

I know that those people will continue to support me, the others subpoenaed, and the targets of the investigation. That spirit of solidarity is exactly what the state fears. It is the source of our strength, yours and mine. And that strength shows itself in every act of resistance.

Forever in silence,
Leah-Lynn Plante

Support Leah and Matt by coming to one of the solidarity demonstrations happening Thursday and Friday!

Thursday, September 13th:

Seattle, WA: Rally outside the hearing at noon in front of the Federal Court House (700 Stewart St). In the event that a contempt hearing is held that day, please be prepared to come inside the courthouse for to support the resisters. You’ll need photo ID and court-appropriate clothes. Don’t bring anything you wouldn’t be able to get past metal detectors and security guards.

Vigil from Noon on the September 13th till noon on September 14th.

Portland, OR: Rally in front of the Federal Court House (1000 SW 3rd Ave, at Salmon) at 12:30pm until 3:30. We will be giving live updates from Seattle.

Minneapolis, MN: Rally in front of Minneapolis City Hall (350 S 5th Street) from noon to 1 pm.

Friday, September 14th:

Oakland, CA: Rally in front of Ron Dellums Federal Building (1301 Clay Street) at 4:30 pm.

If you are planning a solidarity action in your city or town, email us at nopoliticalrepression at gmail.com, and we will post it to the website.

Statement in opposition to state, grand juries, and in support of its resisters

Friends and comrades,

My name is Matt Duran and I will do everything I can to resist this Grand Jury. I’m releasing this as it’s come to my attention that the strategy my lawyer and I have been working under will more than likely not work; the prosecution wants to grant me immunity before I even have a chance to testify. I want to make it clear that I am in no way ever cooperating with the state now or ever. Anyone who knows me well enough to be a close friend knows that I will fight with my political allies and for them with every fiber of my being. If I ever did cooperate, it would bring an immeasurable amount of shame upon myself, my community, and my family as they have risked more in resistance than I have in my life so far.

This is not the first time that the State has attempted to kidnap me, extort money from me, and take me away from my family, loved ones, and comrades. The last time, the State even went so far as to create lies in order to put me away. Bearing this in mind as well as the institutional racism I face every day, I have long ago accepted that I am going to go to prison at some point in my lifetime. This compounded with the fact that I have such an amazing amount of support, to the degree that I don’t even know what to do with it, allows me to know that I am going to make it no matter what is thrown at me.

People should know that this is more than likely not the end of this, the State will continue this Grand Jury well after my comrades and I locked up. Whatever happens, I want you to know that you are not alone and are more than capable of handling whatever is thrown at you. They would not be doing this if we were not successful in any respect; if we kept to our ivory towers debating what is more revolutionary and not actively creating conflict, we would not be facing this repression. Do not stop the struggle, keep organizing and fighting or they will have won. When the Haymarket massacre took place all those years ago and the martyrs were hung for their desire for a better life, the State attempted to crush all radicals. Clearly, this did not work then and it won’t work now. If this was their desire, they have failed in every aspect of it as I have not seen anything other than flagrant disregard for them across the globe. Keep the struggle in your hearts and minds and do not bend to their will. They will never be able to destroy us no matter how hard they try.

In solidarity,

Matt Duran

Demonstrations in Support of Grand Jury Resisters

Thursday, September 13th

Seattle, WA: Rally outside the hearing at noon in front of the Federal Court House (700 Stewart St). In the event that a contempt hearing is held that day, please be prepared to come inside the courthouse for to support the resisters. You’ll need photo ID and court-appropriate clothes. Don’t bring anything you wouldn’t be able to get past metal detectors and security guards.

Vigil from Noon on the September 13th till noon on September 14th.

Portland, OR: Rally in front of the Federal Court House (1000 SW 3rd Ave, at Salmon) at 12:30pm until 3:30. We will be giving live updates from Seattle.

Minneapolis, MN: Rally in front of Minneapolis City Hall (350 S 5th Street) from noon to 1 pm.

If you are planning a solidarity action in your city or town, email us at nopoliticalrepression at gmail.com, and we will post it to the website.

Contempt Hearing at the next grand jury

Grand juries are closed to the public, but contempt hearings are not!

We believe that the Assistant US Attorney overseeing this grand jury has already granted immunity for at least one, if not both of the subpeanuts for September 13th. That means it’s likely they’ll be taken straight from the grand jury room to a contempt hearing, then whisked off to jail for up to the duration of the investigation. If you’re coming to Seattle already that day for the solidarity demo, please be prepared to go inside to pack the courtroom for any contempt hearings that may happen. You’ll need photo ID and court-appropriate clothes. Let’s show Leah and the rest of the subpeanuts that we’re with them, every step of the way!!

National Fax in Day THIS Wednesday to Support Grand Jury Resistors

Two anarchists have been subpoenaed to appear before the secret grand jury in Seattle this Thursday, September 13. Previous hearings have been delayed through a combination of legal maneuvering and an outright refusal to testify. This time it looks as though US Attorney Jenny Durkan is preparing to jail those who refuse to testify.

This Wednesday, September 12th, we are asking for people to show their support by faxing and calling the US attorney’s office. Below you will find a Fax Petition demanding that she end this witch-hunt. To join the petition effort, please follow these simple steps:

1) Go to http://faxzero.com/ .
2) Fill out the form with your name and email address under Sender information.
3) Fill out Jenny A Durkan under Receiver Name and (206) 553-0882 for the Receiver Fax Line.
4) Copy the text at the bottom of this email into the box that says “Type text to appear on the cover page”. Personalize the text in the box to include your name and also anything else you would like to say.
5) Enter the confirmation code
6) Click the Send Free Fax Now button at the bottom of the box.
7) Check your email and click on the confirmation link. Clicking on this link will actually send your fax.
8) Wait for the email that confirms that your fax has been sent.
9) Once you have sent the fax, please CALL the U.S. Attorney’s office at (800) 797-6722 to confirm that they received it. We suggest something like the following script:

“Hello my name is Agnes Driver, and I just sent your office a fax to ask that Jenny Durkan call off tomorrow’s grand jury hearing and end the investigation. I’m calling now to confirm that you received it. Would you check for me please?”

The person answering the phone may offer some general assurance that they are receiving faxes. If they do, please be insistent: “Please, it is very important to me that Ms. Durkin receive my message, and that my voice be added to the opposition to this grand jury. Would you please double-check to verify that you’ve received my message. My name, again, is Agnes Driver.”

It may take a few minutes for them to find your fax. Please be patient while they do. Once they confirm that they have your message, remember to thank the staff for accommodating you.

10) Please send CAPR a message at nopoliticalrepression at gmail.com, to let us know that you sent the message, and what response you received when you called.

Fax message:

End the Grand Jury Investigation of the Anarchist Movement
(Fax Petition)

To: Jenny Durkan
United States Attorney for Western Washington
Seattle, Washington

Fax Line : (206) 553-0882

Ms. Durkan:

I am writing to add my voice to the hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals who have telephoned you, written and signed declarations, and demonstrated in cities around the country demanding an end to the grand jury witch-hunt of anarchists and aligned activists in the Pacific Northwest.

This case clearly shows that your office is persecuting political dissent. It is despicable that the US attorney and the FBI are harassing and intimating this group of people for their political beliefs. I demand that the grand jury investigation be ended immediately, that the governments repression of social movements stop, and that any items seized in the raids be returned to their rightful owners.

signed,

Radical Rumble / NW Knockout: benefit for Pax and grand jury resisters

Martial arts skills showcase to benefit Pax and grand jury resisters! There’s gonna be wrestling, western boxing, muay thai and bands. Food, refreshments and t-shirts will be available. All donations go to the Pax support and Grand Jury Resistors support funds.

3806 SE 34th Avenue, Portland
1pm to 8 or 9

Bands:
GLOOMWEAVER – crushing Tolkein-inspired doom metal from Portland.
More bands TBA!

For more info on Pax’s case, check out http://www.freepax.org.

Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore: “State Oppression Presented as Legal Manipulation”

Imagine for a moment that a few windows of a federal building were smashed during a protest. Imagine that, months later, FBI and police officials start raiding homes in three cities and two states, throwing stun grenades to wake people up, and then confiscating black clothing, computers and “anarchist materials.” Imagine that some of these people are then subpoenaed for secret grand juries where legal representation is prohibited.

Oh, wait – you don’t have to imagine. This kind of persecution is directed at activists and radicals right now – in the Pacific Northwest, and across the country. Of course, this is all part of the same state apparatus that relentlessly criminalizes people of color, poor people, and anyone who gets in the way of corporate business as usual.

Grand juries have long been a tool in this country to force activists to testify against one another for fear of imprisonment. They are also used to justify police state tactics – fabricate some evidence, and you get another billion dollars for the “war on terror,” the “war on drugs,” or any other war on dissent.

Thankfully, most of the activists targeted in the recent grand juries are refusing to cooperate, and this brave gesture serves as a valuable example of how to respond to state oppression presented as “legal” manipulation.

Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore (mattildabernsteinsycamore.com) is most recently the editor of Why Are Faggots So Afraid of Faggots?: Flaming Challenges to Masculinity, Objectification, and the Desire to Conform.

Sarah Small: “Turn Moments of Repression into Moments of Resistance”

State repression is designed to make us believe that the price we pay for our political actions will be too high, that we should be willing to snitch on our friends and communities, and that we are better off not resisting in the first place. But the actions of the grand jury resistors in the Northwest, and the rich history of grand jury resistors and political prisoners that have come before them, demonstrates that we have the opportunity to turn moments of repression into moments of resistance. By showing our solidarity and unwavering support for those that refuse to cooperate with the state we can continue our work of building strong, resilient, and supportive communities that care for each other in moments of crisis. This solidarity helps lay the groundwork for strong movements that can continue the centuries of struggle against capitalism, white supremacy, and patriarchy. Support the grand jury resistors, and fight repression in all its forms!

Sarah Small is a member of the Wild Poppies Collective, a Philadelphia-based anti-imperialist group that works to end state repression and the prison industrial complex. She is also a founding member of Decarcerate PA, a campaign to stop the expansion of Pennsylvania’s prison system.

Help requests for September 15

If you have any of the following items that you’d be willing to let us use for the benefit for Pax and grand jury resisters on September 15th in Portland, please send an email to nopoliticalrepression.wordpress.com.

  • Tables
  • Chairs
  • Pop-up canopy tents
  • Food donations!