All Charges Against Alex Sanchez Dropped

On behalf of my family, community and close friends I extend the gratitude to all the people who have stood next to me and believed from the beginning that this case was a distraction from the work that has been the focus of Homies Unidos. I want to thank the We Are Alex campaign who created chapters in San Francisco New York, Los Angeles and the DC area, with out you speaking out and outraged by my arrest I would not have been able to have fought my case while on bail. Special thanks to all that trusted in me enough to put their homes and sureties that totaled the $2,000,000 bail. And to all that send letters of support and wrote to me while I was in prison for those seven months. I will treasure those moments eternally.

We have not stopped the work, which is greatly needed in our community, but our funding has suffered since my indictment. We expect that we will get more support for the programs which have been reduced significantly since the dismissal of the indictment.

I will look back at this day and will be forever grateful of all who stood firmly next to me in this extremely difficult time and provided support to my family when they most needed it. I have taken my work seriously and with integrity and will continue to do so in the years ahead.

Judge Dale Fischer dismissed all charges without prejudice which gives the government until late March to refill charges. We expect the Government to do the right thing and not refill as they did on December 18 by recommending the dismissal of all charges after reviewing what the initial prosecutors had done to get the indictment.

We will rebuild Homies Unidos!!!!!!!

Alex Sanchez

Denver police lose in court again! Amelia Nicol’s final charges dismissed!

DA admits fear of losing at trial

It’s been a long 5 months for Amelia Nicol, a 21 year old woman from Colorado who became infamous across the region after gracing the front pages of news websites and blogs. Amelia was accused of throwing a molotov cocktail at local police (some media sites even claimed it was a pipe bomb) during the aftermath of a demonstration against Denver police on May 6th. Amelia was arrested and charged with 2 counts of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer in the first degree, one count of use of explosives, one count of possession of explosives, one count of second-degree arson, one count of criminal mischief, one count of inciting a riot, two counts of attemped third-degree assault, and one count of resisting arrest.

These seven felony and three misdemeanor charges threatened to send Amelia to prison for over 100 years. A woman who turned 21 inside a jail cell over Memorial Day Weekend faced the rest of her life in prison.

Amelia’s arrest must be placed into a greater context of a social struggle against the police that has been growing and developing in Denver over the past year and a half. In July 2010, Marvin Booker, a homeless street preacher, was murdered by Denver County Sheriff’s Deputies while he was held prisoner inside the Van Cise-Simonett Detention Center in downtown Denver. Marvin, refusing to be separated from his shoes, valued among the few possessions he owned, was tazed, beaten, placed into chokeholds, kicked, and punched by five deputies. He died after they placed him face down into a jail cell. Other prisoners had to notify the deputies that he had stopped breathing.
Continue reading

Amelia Nicol’s final charges dismissed! Victory in the courtroom!

Today, Thursday September 15th, Amelia was scheduled for a discovery hearing for her ongoing legal case. To the surprise of everyone in attendance, the hearing did not take place as scheduled. Instead the prosecution filed a motion for dismissal of the remaining charges, citing the fear that not enough evidence existed to win a trial. Amelia’s charges were dismissed by the judge, her bond released, and the possibility of prison time lifted from her head.

Amelia won in court. Our movement won in court. A more detailed account will be forthcoming.

We still have two comrades facing charges from a different anti-police demonstration. They face trial on October 12th for a host of misdemeanor charges. Please mark your calendar and plan on packing the courthouse to show support! An injury to one is an injury to all!

Soli!
DABC Crew

Arizona: Border Patrol Headquarters Occupation Protesters Found Not Guilty

NEWS RELEASE
DATE: Thursday June 29, 2011
Contact: Alex Soto
Phone: 602-881-6027
Email: stopbordermilitarization@gmail.com

Border Patrol Headquarters Occupation Protesters Found Not Guilty
Reaffirms Call to End Border Militarization

Chuckson (Tucson), AZ – The six protesters who locked-down and occupied the United States Border Patrol (BP) – Tucson Headquarters on May 21, 2010 were found not guilty on the remaining count of a disorderly conduct “with serious disruptive behavior” charge. The legal defense, William G. Walker and Jeffrey J. Rogers, argued that the remaining charge of disorderly conduct did not apply because it did not meet any of the statutes of the charge. After three hours of deliberation, the judge found the six not guilty.

The city prosecutor had attempted to re-introduce the previously misfiled criminal trespassing as a misdemeanor charge, but this charge was dismissed after the first trial date for the occupiers in February. After an objection by the defense, the state’s motion was denied.

“Today’s not guilty verdict shows that we, as O’odham, are not the ones who are disorderly. It is the Border Patrol, the Department of Homeland Security, and the various levels of government that perpetrate the violence in our communities,” stated Alex Soto, Tohono O’odham, one of the protesters and member of O’odham Solidarity Across Borders Collective. “When will the institutions, whose conduct continues for more than 500 years of trespassing, that terrorize indigenous and migrants communities, be held accountable?”

“No state entity can deny peoples’ inherent right to freedom of movement,” said Marisa Duarte, one of the protesters standing trial. “Borders are a colonial weapon used to continue the genocide of indigenous people and their culture. Through trade they exploit natural resources and use the profits to further the progress of neo-liberal infrastructure projects such as CANAMEX and NAFTA. This results in the criminalization of those who defy borders through living their lives traditionally. You see the forced relocation of families from borders all around the world. Today we say no more to this criminalization of people.”

O’odham Elders and community members attended the court proceedings to demonstrate their support.

“Today we celebrate our victory in court, but understand this is just one step in ending border militarization. We took action last May in order to directly confront the issues in our communities by physically intervening and occupying the Border Patrol station.

Since that time, many have answered the call to end border militarization, and victories like today have inspired more action,” said Franco Habre.

As the six waited for the state’s decision, 16 angry community members targeted the prison firm G4S (formally Wackenhut) and were cited criminal trespassing charges. The 16 declared in no uncertain terms their opposition to the company’s profiteering at the expense of immigrant communities in Tucson, across the nation and throughout the world. Their action, which was organized autonomously by Tucson community members, was carried out under the banner of Direct Action for Freedom of Movement.

The six still stand firmly with their commitment and demands to end border militarization and their initial demands are listed below:

– Immediately withdraw National Guard Troops from the US/Mexico border

– Immediately halt development of the border wall

– Immediately remove drones and checkpoints

– Decommission all detention camps and release all presently held undocumented migrants

– Immediately honor Indigenous Peoples rights of self-determination

– Fully comply with the recently signed UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

– Respect Indigenous People’s inherent right of migration

– End NAFTA, FTAA and other trade agreements

– Immediately end all CANAMEX/NAFTA Highway projects (such as the South Mountain Freeway)

– Immediately repeal SB1070 and 287g

– End all racial profiling

– No BP encroachment/sweeps on sovereign Native land

– No raids and deportations

– Immediate and unconditional regularization (“legalization”) of all people

– Uphold human freedom and rights

– Uphold the rights of ALL Indigenous People – repeal HB 2281, support the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People

– Support dignity and respect

– Support and ensure freedom of movement for all people

Soto concluded, “This action was a prayer. We’d like to thank those who stood with us during this process and to all who firmly stand with us to end border militarization. The occupation of the Border Patrol station was never about any group/organization, or us, it was about directly confronting the terror that the state unleashes upon indigenous and migrant communities, so we can critically challenge border militarization. As an O’odham, I always think back to my grandparents’ teachings: We as O’odham people have always traveled freely, regardless of the border. It’s our land, who we are, and we will defend it.”

To view the occupation video and for additional resources please visit:

http://www.oodhamsolidarity.blogspot.com

http://www.survivalsolidarity.wordpress.com

Update #4 on Amelia Nicol, anti-police terror prisoner: Most charges thrown out!!

Update #4 on Amelia Nicol, Anti-Police Terror Prisoner
Denver, CO
by Denver Anarchist Black Cross

There have been some major developments within Amelia’s case. Amelia had a pretrial hearing today, on June 9. A pretrial hearing allows for a judge to hear the evidence, and decide whether there is sufficient evidence for a defendant to stand trial for the charges that have been filed. In this case, as detailed below, the judge made some pretty strong rulings in favor of Amelia.

As of the writing of this reportback, the judge in the case, Judge Andrew S. Armatas, has thrown out nearly all of the felonies that Amelia was facing, including both charges of attempted first degree murder, the charge of arson, the charge of inciting a riot, an amended charge of participating in a riot, and a charge of felony criminal mischief. Amelia is left facing a single felony charge of possession of an explosive, and three misdemeanor charges: one count of resisting arrest and two counts of attempted assault on a police officer.

These developments are amazingly good news for Amelia, but the fight is far from over. Amelia has made a decision to accept being bonded out at this point, as her bond has been reduced to $5,000. We hope to be able to raise the whole amount and avoid a bondsmen, and hope to have her out by next week. We really need donations to make this possible, as we may be taking out some loans or calling in some favors to make this happen. Furthermore, since Amelia was homeless when she was arrested, she will be needing a place to stay and money for food, clothing and other needs. The local movement here will surely help her out to any degree we can, but any additional funds would be extremely helpful. Please send any monetary donations to:

Denver ABC
2727 W. 27th Ave Unit D
Denver, CO 80211
Checks should be made payable to P&L Printing with “Amelia” written in the memo line.

Thus far, nearly all donations that have been raised have gone to pay for phone calls (averaging $15 per call), stamps, envelopes and paper. A big thanks to everyone who has donated to us so far!

Amelia is going to be in court again for an arraignment on the four charges that remain on June 27th at 8:30 am in courtroom 2T. She still faces one felony, and we will work tirelessly until she can beat this case.
Continue reading

Chile: Mapuche Defendants Acquitted of Terrorism Charges

February 22, 2011

The Tribunal of Cañete decided in favor of the 17 Mapuche accused of various felonies classified as terrorism and related to the theft of wood. Nonetheless, 4 of them were found guilty for the attack against State’s Attorney Mario Elgueta in October, 2008.

Excitement was in the air minutes after the decision of the Cañete Tribunal became known, with the acquittal of 14 Mapuche accused of illegal association and terrorist arson, and another three accused of being part of an organization for the theft of wood in the area of Tirúa.

The president of the Tribunal, Jorge Díaz, indicated that even if it were certain that the acts alleged by the Public Ministry did in fact occur and could be characterized as terrorism, they did not succeed through their evidence and testimonies to establish that the accused participated in the crimes, and therefore they were all absolved. As such, the secret witness used by prosecutor Andrés Cruz was discredited.

Of the 17 accused, only Héctor Llaitul, Ramón Llanquileo, Jonathan Huillical and José Huenuche were found guilty of the felonies “Robbery with Intimidation,” “Assault on Authority,” and “Attempted Homicide” against state’s attorney Mario Elgueta and three functionaries of the PDI (Investigative Police), however the tribunal classified these felonies as common rather than terrorist crimes.

What constituted the gravest setback for the prosecutor was the absolution of all 17 comuneros [Mapuche who live in the communities] for the felonies of theft of wood and arson targeting cabins [of tourists or the forestry company], principally in the area of lake Lleu Lleu, in the years 2005-2008.

Immediately, all the absolved comuneros, except those who have cases pending in other tribunals, walked out the door, after spending around 2 years in pretrial detention, and were reunited with their excited family members.

http://paismapuche.org/?p=3101

[during the prior two weeks, there have been multiple actions in the Mapuche territories, with an oil well being blockaded, a police eviction of reclaimed lands being repelled, an evicted territory reoccupied, and numerous new land reclamations, in both the Chilean and Argentinean parts of the occupied Mapuche territories—Wallmapu and Puelmapu]

Source

 

Former Anarchist POW Ojore Lutalo settles lawsuit for unlawful Amtrak arrest

From the Denver Post:

The city of La Junta’s insurance carrier will pay an undisclosed amount to Ojore Lutalo, a New Jersey passenger on an Amtrak train who was wrongly jailed after another passenger mistook his phone conversation for terrorist threats.

Lutalo filed suit in U.S. District Court in Denver against the city of La Junta, Police Chief Todd Quick and Sgt. Shawn Mobley, claiming Mobley lied in an arrest affidavit to justify the charge against him.

The terms of the settlement say the city does not admit liability and that the amount of money paid to Lutalo is to remain confidential.

Bill Jackson, La Junta’s assistant city manager, said Monday the city does not have to publicly disclose the amount because it was paid by the city’s insurance company and not the taxpayers.

Lutalo was offered $20,000 early on in the suit, but declined to settle for that amount, said his attorney, Francisco Martinez.

The city has also agreed to submit a letter to authorities in New Jersey and Colorado that says Lutalo’s arrest was based on misinformation.

On Jan. 26, 2010, Lutalo was arrested on suspicion of endangering public transportation while headed home to New Jersey after attending the Anarchist Book Fair in Los Angeles.

Amtrak called the La Junta police after a conductor said a Missouri couple on board thought they overheard Lutalo making statements about bombing the train and al-Qaeda.

But other passengers sitting near Lutalo told police they didn’t hear him say anything threatening, Lutalo said in his lawsuit. La Junta police did not include those statements in their reports and arrest papers.

The lawsuit also says Mobley filed a report that says Lutalo was born in Nigeria even though he is an American born in New Jersey.

The district attorney declined to file a case against Lutalo, citing a lack of evidence, but Lutalo was in custody for three days.

The incident occurred shortly after the Nigerian bomber attempted a terrorist attack on an airplane Christmas Day 2009, and Martinez believes the hysteria surrounding that case led to Lutalo’s arrest.

“He ran into this perfect storm,” Martinez said.

Lutalo already had notoriety because he spent 28 years in prison for getting into a police shootout in 1975 and another shooting with a citizen in 1981.

While in prison, he pushed for reforms that led to his release in August 2009.

Read more: La Junta to settle lawsuit with man who was wrongfully jailed – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_17388873#ixzz1E2d1vdW3
Read The Denver Post’s Terms of Use of its content: http://www.denverpost.com/termsofuse