Breaking: EDDIE CONWAY FREE‏

eddie-conway

Received via email from the National Jericho Network:

“Greetings
I just received the great news at 3:15 pm that Marshall Eddie Conway a Jericho Political Prisoner held for over 40 years has been released. More info to follow.”

According to an article in the Baltimore Sun:

Former Black Panther leader and convicted cop killer Marshall “Eddie” Conway was released after four decades behind bars on Tuesday, after striking an agreement with prosecutors over a challenge to his conviction based on of the way judges explained the law to juries in old cases.

Conway, now 67, spent more than 40 years behind bars after being convicted in the 1970 killing of Baltimore Police Officer Donald Sager, 35, who was killed in an ambush. Conway has maintained his innocence, saying that he was set up, and denied any role in the attack. For years there has been a campaign by supporters to get him pardoned.

His release Tuesday after a hearing in Baltimore Circuit Court was a result of the “Unger” decision, under which the state’s highest court ruled that jurors had been given improper instructions in cases tried before 1980. More than a dozen people were released last summer as a result of the decision, and officials have said as many as 200 others could be released.

Under the agreement, Conway’s conviction stands but he was re-sentenced to time served. He will be on supervised probation for the next five years, the agreement says.

Robert J. Boyle, one of Conway’s attorneys, said that while Conway has always maintained his innocence in the shooting, “he accepts this disposition and he willingly went along with it.”

But Boyle added that had Conway decided to press his claim under the Unger decision, he could have mounted a strong defense in any retrial.

“It was an extremely weak case against him,” said Boyle, who has worked on a number of cases involving wrongfully convicted Black Panthers.

The Baltimore branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People hailed Conway’s release as a triumph.

“Today is a monumental day for the thousands of Marylanders and the millions around the world that have championed the release of Marshall “Eddie” Conway for a very long time,” said President Tessa Hill-Aston. “The release of Conway after four decades of imprisonment is an important page turner in this tragic story. … Our prayers remain with him as he makes the transition to freedom.”

But police union officials said they were troubled by the release. In addition to Sager’s death, another officer, Stanley Sierakowsky, was wounded.

“It’s a very difficult thing to learn, after all these years, that he’s not going to fulfill the sentence he was given, which was life,” said Gene Ryan, vice president of the city’s Fraternal Order of Police lodge.

Fernando González of Cuban 5 released!

From ABC News:

A second member of the “Cuban Five” — the spy ring whose arrests and convictions have caused repeated tensions between Washington and Havana — was released Thursday from a U.S. prison after spending more than 15 years behind bars.

Fifty-year-old Fernando Gonzalez, known to U.S. authorities by the alias Ruben Campa, completed his sentence at 4 a.m. local time a prison in Safford, Ariz., Bureau of Prisons spokesman Chris Burke said.

Now the Five, as they are sometimes called, are down to three.

Gonzalez was turned over immediately to the custody of immigration officials, said Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Barbara Gonzalez. For security reasons, she said she could not disclose exactly where he was being held or when he would be returned to Cuba, but a deportation order has already been issued.

The five men, who are hailed as heroes in Cuba, were convicted in 2001 in Miami on charges including conspiracy and failure to register as foreign agents in the U.S. They were known as part of the “Wasp Network” sent by Cuba’s then-President Fidel Castro to spy in South Florida.

Trial testimony showed they sought to infiltrate military bases, including the headquarters of the U.S. Southern Command and installations in the Florida Keys. They also kept tabs on Cuban exiles opposed to the communist government in Havana and sought to place operatives inside campaigns of U.S. politicians opposed to that government, prosecutors said.

Havana maintains that the agents posed no threat to U.S. sovereignty and were only monitoring militant exiles to prevent terrorist attacks in Cuba, the best known of which was a series of bombings of Havana hotels that killed an Italian tourist in 1997. Cuban leaders regularly call for the men to be released.

Cuba announced a concert Saturday night at the University of Havana in honor of the five men, though it was not immediately clear whether Gonzalez would be in Cuba by then.

The Communist Party newspaper Granma published interviews Thursday with two of Gonzalez’s friends back home. Rafael Hojas said the two knew each other as young students and crossed paths on international missions in Africa.

“I hope he spends as little time as possible in an immigration jail and can enjoy as soon as possible his mother, his wife, his family, and we’ll see when we might be able to meet,” Hojas was quoted as saying.

Gonzalez’s mother, Magali Llort, told The Associated Press that she sometimes thinks her son’s release is a dream “but luckily it’s a great reality. But we can’t feel satisfied with Fernando arriving and Rene having come. We have to keep up the fight so that the rest, their brothers, are here,” she said.

The Cuban Five have sometimes been linked to the case of American Alan Gross, who has spent four years in a Cuban prison after he was arrested while working covertly to set up Internet access for the island’s Jewish community. He was working as a subcontractor for the U.S. Agency for International Development, which Cuba considers bent on undermining its government.

Cuba has suggested it might swap Gross for the Cuban Five, but Washington has rejected any such deal.

Thank You From Recently Released Antifa Prisoner John Tucker (Tinley Park Five)

After twenty months of imprisonment, antifascist political prisoner John Tucker is free. John is the second of the Tinley Park Five to be released and he’s written a thank you letter to his supporters. The letter reads:
“These past 20 months have been an ordeal to say the least. From court drama to safety issues to just the woes of incarceration itself, this has been a trying process. Yet, even within the darkness of a cell, cut off from the world, some light could still be seen. Your letters, donation,s and noisy solidarity were things of beauty to eyes forced to view the despair of a broken system day after day and eyes that could not help but watch as any glimmer of hope faded from so many youths as they were dehumanized by the tortuous conditions in which they were forced to dwell. Your zines brought much needed and often obscured information into a citadel of ignorance and fear, your books lifted the weight of monotonous oppression, and your donations aided in the welfare of so many with nothing but the state to care for them. A parcel of food here or some cosmetics there so often mean the difference between another night spent hungry or unclean and a good night’s rest, and never doubt the weight of one’s spirit in a time of need. Sadness, loneliness, and a lack of basic human needs often crush that vital spark necessary for a meaningful, productive, life and sadly press those “corrected” into a self-defeating cycle of unchecked violence or harsh drug use.

For so much I am thankful for the supporters, but of greatest importance was the solidarity. Your constant stream of letters and cards not only kept myself sane, but also gave tangible, physical proof of solidarity which revealed the tremendous weight of the conviction of people from the real world who likewise are willing to make a stand against the far too often accepted evils of the world, to an incarcerated populace who had often not heard of such people before. The attention brought by the constant stream of mail peaked curiosity and drove many to question what was going on. This in turn lead to discussions, which in turn lead to some longer discussions that I hope have made a difference in at least a few lives over the course of my stint of incarceration.

Now that I am free I am no less thankful for everything I have received from our amazing support network, which is in itself a testament to the will of a people willing to sacrifice to make a change. A support network populated by good hearted, noble people who have often suffered first hand under the weight of unchecked and unopposed malice. Thank you once again for everything you have done and continue to do; you are indeed an amazing people.

In Solidarity,
John Tucker”

While John is now out of prison, he undoubtedly needs the kind of support that those nearest to him can provide. At the same time, three of the Tinley Park Five remain imprisoned. Please take this time to write to them. Their addresses are:

Cody Sutherlin M34021
Robinson Correctional Center
13423 East 1150th Avenue
Robinson, Illinois 62454

Dylan Sutherlin M34022
Centralia Correctional Center
Post Office Box 7711
Centralia, Illinois 62801

Jason Sutherlin M34023
East Moline Correctional Center
100 Hillcrest Road
East Moline, Illinois 61244

BREAKING: JUDGE ORDERS LYNNE STEWART’S RELEASE

LynneStewart-ImprisonedFrom NYC CBS:

A federal judge in Manhattan ordered a “compassionate release” Tuesday from prison for a dying former civil rights lawyer.

The U.S. government requested the release earlier in the day for Lynne Stewart, who was convicted in a terrorism case from prison. Prosecutors say Stewart, 74, suffers from recurrent stage-four breast cancer. She was not scheduled to be released until August 2018.

U.S. District Judge John Koeltl had said he could not release her early without a recommendation for from prison authorities. The director of the Bureau of Prisons made the request through Preet Bharara, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York.

“The defendant’s terminal medical condition and very limited life expectancy constitute extraordinary and compelling reasons that warrant the requested reduction” in her prison sentence, Koeltl’s order said.

Stewart has been imprisoned since 2009 after she was convicted of helping a blind Egyptian sheik, Omar Abdel-Rahman, communicate with his followers from prison.

Abdel-Rahman was convicted in 1996 of plotting to bomb a number of landmarks in New York City. He was sentenced to life in prison.

If she is released, Stewart would live with her son in Brooklyn, CNN reported.

Support Coyote Sheff: Post Release Registry

coyotesheff2Coyote will be released on November 8th! Donations and gifts are very much appreciated as Coyote, after sixteen years in prison, needs support in adjusting to life on the outside. On the registry there is a list of some of the things that Coyote expects to need upon release.

http://www.simpleregistry.com/coyoterelease/

If you’d rather send something in the mail:
Coyote Sheff
P.O. Box 1633
Olympia WA 98507

Coyote is a self-defined anarchist who holds down his own prison chapter of Anarchist Black Cross in the confines of Nevada’s maximum security prison, Ely State Prison.

In addition to starting a prison chapter of the Anarchist Black Cross, Coyote has organized anarchist reading and discussion groups amongst inmates, as well as exercise groups. He has written for radical and anarchist publications.

More Info On Coyote Sheff:
http://coyote-calling.blogspot.com/
www.facebook.com/coy.sheff

BREAKING: HERMAN WALLACE HAS BEEN FREED!

Herman-7-2013

From Democracy Now:

Angola 3 member Herman Wallace has been released from prison in Louisiana after 42 years in solitary confinement. Supporters say he is en route to New Orleans to live out his days in hospice. Watch Democracy Now! for update on Wednesday when we will be joined by fellow freed Angola 3 member Robert King, and by Wallace’s defense attorney, George Kendall.

We received this statement from Wallace’s legal team:

“Tonight, Herman Wallace has left the walls of Louisiana prisons and will be able to receive the medical care that his advanced liver cancer requires. It took the order of a federal judge to address the clear constitutional violations present in Mr. Wallace’s 1974 trial and grant him relief. The state of Louisiana has had many opportunities to address this injustice and has repeatedly and utterly failed to do so.

“Mr. Wallace has been granted a new trial, but his illness is terminal and advanced. However, the unfathomable punishment of more than four decades which Mr. Wallace spent in solitary confinement conditions will be the subject of litigation which will continue even after Mr. Wallace passes away. It is Mr. Wallace’s hope that this litigation will help ensure that others, including his lifelong friend and fellow ‘Angola 3’ member, Albert Woodfox, do not continue to suffer such cruel and unusual confinement even after Mr. Wallace is gone.”

Update from Mexico City: All comrades released

We received word from our comrades at the Mexico City Anarchist Black Cross, that all of the arrested comrades have been released. More info as it comes.