Tag Archive: Army of the Twelve Monkeys

Army of the 12 Monkeys Follow-up Public Statement from Monkey #9

12_monkeysFrom Anarchist News

In response to YOU ARE THE RESISTANCE: A Call for Free-World Organizing of the Army of the 12 Monkeys posted on 2-12-14

First, I’d like to say thanks for the comments on my article posted on 2/12/14.

But i’d like to clarify a few points.

The articles and stories about the A12M activities from September 2012 to near August 2013 are well documented at anarchistnews.org, as well as in Earth First Magazine – Spring 2013 p10; and Fireworks News – May 2013 issue 1 p5; seanswain.org; and PAN – Fall 2013.

One person said that our tactics are common occurences in prison. Though some of our smaller acts may be done by others, past and present, the scale on which we – overall – attacked the prisons in Ohio has never been seen before. Since, Mr/Ms. “just unconfirmed rumors” has obviously read our manuals, I would suggest not trying to undermine the small things which lead to the bigger picture. If our tactics are nothing more than copycat acts of vandalism, then why was I quesitoned by the Ohio Sate Highway Patrol in regards to threats made on Ohio Representatives? Why was my mother and sister threatened with FBI investigation? And why, after those accused undoubtably proved all the DDRC evidence bogus did four people – 1 of which with no connection to A12M, still end up in maximum security? Because, the couldn’t allow “rioters” or “riot encouragers” to walk, and railroading us on encouraging a riot was better than admitting to the media that they lost ontrol of the inmate population in 2 prisons (ManCI and Lake Erie). Was the violence at LECI prisoner on prisoner – yes. But that was the outcom of poor organizing. The A12M attempted a coup on the staff which resulted in two prison gangs fighting for the “right to rule”. The A12M materials found after the riot clearly confirms A12M involvement. Not to mention that I personally put out a call for an uprising at multiple prisons which resulted in LECI’s riot – confirmed in a return letter to me, and resulted in the multi-prison shackdowns across the state. (more…)

Sean Swain, Blackjack & The Army of the 12 Monkeys

This week’s show is about the case of two prisoners in Ohio. In 2011, the staff at Mansfield Correctional Institution (MANCI) became aware of a nascent guerilla sabotage movement starting among prisoners called the Army of the 12 Monkeys (A12M). A12M sabotage and organizing manual and propaganda began circulating among prisoners. Cells were searched in detail and James “BlackJack” Dzelijilja was found to have angry hiphop against prison he’d written and also a book on Ericco Malatesta, the long-dead Italian anarchist. Sean Swain, an outspoken anarchist prisoner and jailhouse lawyer at the same institution, was found to have an article he was writing criticizing the privatization of the prison system. Neither were found with A12M materials. As time passed, 2 other prisoners were accused and assented to membership in A12M and that Swain and Blackjack were unaffiliated. Ohio’s prison court, however, disagreed. Now this movement has spread throughout multiple facilities in Ohio, such as Noble, Lake Eerie and Toledo.

This episode is a conversation with Blackjack and Sean Swain, both serving in high security at Youngstown (OSP), and also with Ben Turk of Redbird Prison Abolition and supporter of Sean Swain. We talk about Sean’s activism and writing, how the A12M case has effected Sean & Blackjack, the targeting of anarchists within prisons and more. (more…)

Sean has been transferred!

sean-swainFrom SeanSwain.org

After many months of waiting in awful conditions in the segregation unit at Mansfield, Sean has been transferred to the Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown, Ohio.

Please take a minute to write to Sean, or to send him a book or zine. Getting transferred is really hard on people in prison, even if we hope that his conditions will be slightly better at O.S.P. than in the segregation unit at MANCI. He would love to hear from friends and supporters to boost his spirits while he adjusts to new conditions of confinement.

Also, Sean has not been allowed access to books for the last year, and receiving books right now would be a real relief.

Seriously, fuck the State and every person who makes a penny off keeping the people we love in cages.

Sean’s new address is:

Sean Swain 243-205
Ohio State Penitentiary
878 Coitsville-Hubbard Rd.
Youngstown, OH 44505

Three Updates About Repression of Anarchist Prisoner Sean Swain

12_monkeysFrom Anarchist News

Update #1: Sean has been approved for transfer to level 5 supermax and according to officials at ManCI he’s “#1 on the list to go” but according to the ODRC website, he is still at ManCI. We expected Sean to be transfered to level 4B in Lucasville. Sean has faced two conduct reports for the same incidents. It appears they approved the transfer on the basis of the first conduct report, which recommended level 5, and was thrown out / redone by ODRC legal counsel Trevor Clark because it “relied too heavily on Sean’s ideology” I’m paraphrasing that quote, rather than citing the actual letter because i’m hundreds of miles away from Sean’s legal work and because…

Update #2: SeanSwain.org mysteriously went down following the posting of “Days of Teargas, Blood and Vomit” (see full text of that below). We’re investigating to make sure this wasn’t an accident or coincidence, and hope to have the site back up, in some form, soon.

Update #3: The ManCI mail room is acting up worse than ever. Mail from publishers / distributors appears to be thrown in the trash with no notice of withholding (a violation of prison rules) and personal letters from some people are returned with messages written on them by Sean. So they show / hand him the envelope but won’t let him open it. We’re not really sure exactly what is going on with that, but it seems like sending sean lots and lots of mail to swamp the fascists in the mail room is a direct way to intervene in the situation. Calling and complaining is another option. (more…)

Sean Swain Frame-up Thrown Out, New Frame-up in the Works.

sean-swainFrom Seanswain.org

Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections (ODRC) Legal Counsel Trevor Clark has taken over Sean’s case from Angela Hunsinger. Clark says he plans to throw out the Rules Infraction Board (RIB) decision and re-do the investigation himself.

Hunsinger’s RIB report relied on an “ideological match” between Sean’s anarchist beliefs and the propaganda distributed by the Army of the 12 Monkeys. Sean appealed the decision, all the way to ODRC director Gary Mohr. All of his appeals were denied, nobody in the ODRC thought there was a problem. Sean was on his way to supermax, when his lawyer, Robert Fitrakis, threatened a civil rights lawsuit, claiming that Sean’s ideology is rooted in neolithic indiginism, his state-approved religious belief. The ODRC sent Head Legal Counsel Trevor Clark in to look at the situation and prepare a defense against the lawsuit. After reviewing Hunsinger’s conduct report, and listening to the RIB hearing, Clark admitted to Sean that listening to it, he “wanted to shoot [him]self in the fucking face” because the hearing and report was so poorly conducted. (more…)

Monkey Number Nine Exonerates Sean Swain

12_monkeysFrom Seanswain.org

In a recent sworn affidavit Leslie Dillon admits to heading the Mansfield faction of the Army of the 12 Monkeys. He states that as Monkey number 9 he knows that his co-accused Sean Swain and James “Blackjack” Dzelajilija are not members of A12M. He states that he is the only member of the Army of the 12 Monkeys at ManCI, and that he did not recruit or attempt to recruit any members. He also explains the circumstantial evidence the Rules Infraction Board used against Swain and Blackjack and describes an attempt to coerce testimony from him against Swain.

Dillon states that Swain’s 12 Monkeys tattoo pre-dated the emergence of the Army of the 12 Monkeys and is simply a reference to the 90s movie starring Bruce Willis and Brad Pitt. The “propaganda” found in Dzelajilija’s cell was actually rap lyrics he wrote based on 2Pac Shakur’s song “Everyone Rise”. Dillon aquired a copy of these lyrics and remembered the 2Pac song, so he typed the lyrics and signed it Monkey #12.

Dillon states that he has attempted to explain these circumstances to ManCI staff repeatedly with no response. He goes on to describe an interaction with unrecognized staff member at ManCI on December 3rd, 2012. This staff member offered Dillon a deal where ManCI investigator Angela Hunsinger would overturn his RIB conviction if he would testify that Swain was the leader of the Army of the 12 Monkeys. Dillon refused and that evening his cell was searched and his property destroyed. The next day ODRC Director Gary Mohr affirmed Dillon’s RIB sanction. (more…)

Anarchist Prisoner’s Ideologically Motivated Transfer to Super Max Immanent. Meanwhile, Guerilla Warfare Continues in Ohio’s Prison System.

12_monkeysFrom Sean Swain

Wednesday, Feb 13th, Mansfield OH- Tomorrow is the deadline for Sean Swain to file his final appeal to Warden Terry Tibbals. Supporters are asking people to call the Warden on Friday to oppose the transfer. The Rules Infraction Board found Sean guilty of leading The Army of the 12 Monkeys, a group calling for sabotage and low intensity guerrilla warfare against the prison system. They had no evidence against Sean other than an alleged “ideological match” with the propaganda put out by this group.

Sean has been under strict supervision in a control unit since September, but the activities of the Army of the 12 Monkeys have continued in Mansfield and may have spread to a second correctional institution in Ohio. On January 15th, at least four prisoners were transferred from general population in Mansfield to segregation for allegedly engaging in 12 Monkeys activity including breaking windows. (more…)

Word from Sean

jpaylargeFrom SeanSwain.org

We received this JPay from Sean today, it was written on the 24th.  It appears as though the Army of the 12 Monkeys is still active at Mansfield Correctional. A “handful of guys” just got transferred to the hole,  accused of being members of the Army of the 12 Monkeys.

We also heard rumors that at least one of these prisoners is being tortured in a “suicide cell” just like Sean was initially. The guy’s name is Shawn Marshall. His number is 461-448.  Word is Marshall went to this torture cell on Tuesday Jan 15th. He doesn’t have friends or family on the outside, so there’s no one to stop them from keeping him in torture cell for a long time.

Sean has not had his final security reveiw or been transferred yet. ManCI staff are depriving Sean and others accused of 12 Monkeys activity of food and sleep.  Read the JPay for details.

Please call ManCI at 419-526-2000 demand that they stop torturing Shawn Marshall (461-448) and that they adequately feed prisoners in seg and allow them to sleep.

Please call Director Gary Mohr at Central Office, 614-752-1150, demand that ManCI staff be sanctioned until this treatment changes.

Alleged Anarchist Prison Saboteur Sean Swain is MIA

12_monkeysFrom SeanSwain.org January 24, 2013

On Friday January 11th Sean Swain wrote a JPay email notifying outside supporters that his security status review was scheduled for the following Monday. We didn’t receive this email until Tuesday and haven’t heard anything since. On December 26th, Sean sent a fat envelope with instructions for his lawyer on how to pressure officials, threatening a civil suit if they go ahead with the transfer. This envelope didn’t arrive until Thursday January 10th. Intentional delays of communication by ManCI staff prevented us from helping Sean fight this transfer. (more…)

Anarchist Prisoner Sean Swain Blamed for Sabotage Campaign

From Sean Swain

In September 2012, copies of a “resistance manual” and flyers promoting “a joyous class war” and sabotage within the prison appeared within Mansfield Correctional Institution (ManCI). According to a conduct report filed against alleged leaders, these materials “instruct inmates to bring the prison system to the brink” by engaging in a wide range of activities. The flyers were distributed by a group calling themselves the Army of the Twelve Monkeys, a reference to a 1990′s science fiction film.

The flyers promote three types of activities. First, wasting resources: “run electrical appliance and flush sink water all day” and “demand all food, clothes and medical/dental you are entitled to”. Second, damaging prison property: “break machines in the kitchen and OPI… pour salt water in staff computers… cut phone and computer lines… put gum, paperclips, and staples in door locks”. Third, broader organizing calls: “gang members to unite against our common enemy” and “steal, sabotage, organize, strike, resist”. (more…)