Tag Archive: Politics

Jeremy Hammond Sentenced To 10 Years In Prison

jeremyhammondFrom Huffington Post

NEW YORK — Convicted hacker Jeremy Hammond was sentenced Friday to 10 years in prison for stealing internal emails from the global intelligence firm Stratfor.

During the hearing, he claimed in a defiant sentencing statement that his acts were meant to expose the truth and that he hacked foreign government websites at the behest of an FBI informant.

“The acts of civil disobedience and direct action that I am being sentenced for today are in line with the principles of community and equality that have guided my life,” Hammond said in a prepared statement provided to HuffPost Live. “I took responsibility for my actions, by pleading guilty, but when will the government be made to answer for its crimes?” (more…)

Kevin is Finally Receiving Books! Thanks to Everyone Who Applied Pressure

prison-bible1-95764_200x200From SupportKevinandTyler.com

After a tug-a-war between jail superintendent Michael Waterworth and the (much more reasonable) people above him, fairness prevailed and Kevin is now receiving books.

Thanks to everyone who spoke up on Kevin’s and Tyler’s behalf (and everyone imprisoned in Woodford County).

Kevin’s book wish list is here, so if you have the means, please send him a book (or just a letter).

Thanks again for everyone’s support.

Alex Stuck, of the Tinley Park 5, Paroled

Well, Some of you may already know by now but Alex Stuck of the Tinley Park Five was paroled on Friday, November 1st.  We’re including a statement from Alex below.
Sorry it’s taken me so long to put this out. I’ve been working on my transition back in to the world and so far everyone has been great with helping me out with everything. I kinda feel like a new born, HA. Anyway, I just wanted to write something and post it up for everyone to see that I’m out now and am doing ok. Most of all I want to say thank you to everyone for helping me with everything during my incarceration.
It’s still so very surreal. Prison was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but people like all of you who exist with your endless love: I couldn’t have done any of this without you. I would also like to thank you for all the help you’ve been giving my four friends during their stint in Dante’s Inferno. It’s really hard to put into words how much all of you mean to me. Because of you I’ve been able to survive and stay strong. Your solidarity continues to leave me
speechless. (more…)

Lawyers in Stratfor leak case present letters of support ahead of sentencing

Anonymous-activists-prose-006From The Guardian

Hundreds of letters defending Jeremy Hammond, who is facing 10 years in prison for email leaks, call for lenient sentence

Lawyers acting for Jeremy Hammond, the Chicago-based hacktivist facing up to 10 years in prison for releasing internal emails from the private intelligence agency Stratfor, have lodged 265 letters of support with the federal judge who will determine his sentence on 15 November.

The letters call on judge Loretta Preska of the US district court for the southern district of New York to show leniency towards Hammond, a former member of the hacking network Anonymous who has become a cause célèbre for hacktivists, civil libertarians and those concerned about the rights of whistleblowers. They include 36 submissions from leading data experts and freedom of information campaigners. (more…)

This Wednesday! November Political Prisoner Letter Writing Night

send-solidarity-inside-prisons-graficanera-NO-COPYRIGHTPolitical Prisoner Letter Writing Night!

On Wednesday, November 13th the Internationalist Prison Books Collective brings you this month’s Political Prisoner Letter Writing Night!

Write letters and birthday cards to political prisoners whose birthdays fall during the month of November.

It’s an easy way to let these people know they aren’t forgotten. If you can’t make it to the letter writing night then please send a birthday card from home.

ANNOUNCING THE ANARCHIST PRIMER COMPETITION AT THE CARRBORO ANARCHIST BOOK FAIR!

carrboro-anarchist-bookfair-posterFrom Carrboro Anarchist Bookfair

Raise your hand if this has happened to you:

You’re tabling at a local event, chatting with someone on a bus, having a beer with a co-worker, or in one of the countless situations when  you’re explaining your anarchism to a non-anarchist who’s curious. They seem interested, open to your ideas, or eager to try to share them with others in their life. As you wrap up your conversation, they ask you for a good, basic, accessible introduction to anarchist ideas – one they can read to their kids or share with their skeptical friends or distribute in their small town. What do you give them?

If you’re anything like us, your distro table has ample supplies of historical narratives, advanced theoretical critiques, and topical analyses, but when it comes to a simple primer to get the anarcho-curious started, your stocks are surprisingly scarce. This has proved frustrating again and again, from the Occupy encampments to  anti-election leafleting to everyday outreach. There are plenty of primers out there, but a lot of them are poorly written or out of date. For years we distributed Fighting For Our Lives, but now it’s at long last out of print. You can recommend books, but what can you copy by the hundreds and give to any old person?

And that’s why we’re announcing the ANARCHIST PRIMER COMPETITION, taking
place at the 4th Carrboro Anarchist Book Fair in Chapel Hill, NC! (more…)

Another Huge Book Donation From World Book Night!

wbn2013We are thrilled to announce that for the second year in a row World Book Night has donated hundreds of copies of some of our favorite books.  The books come from their 2013 selection, which include The Handmaid’s TaleFahrenheit 451, The Alchemist, Good Omens, and many more. We are so excited to send these out far and wide, and wanted to share the excitement with all of y’all. So, join your nerdy comrades at the Prison Books Collective on Sundays to help us stay on top of our backlog.

We at the Prison Books Collective are delighted to put these books into the hands of prisoners. We will continue to put great works of fiction into the hands of prisoners, as well as provide quality resources to help enable prisoners to self-educate, self-organize, and challenge the roots of their conditions. If you’re able, please consider helping us by becoming a monthly sustainer of our work or making a one-time donation. Your generosity not only feeds our work, it is a part of it. Pooling resources is resistance in action.

Prison Segregation and Racial Disparities

solitary_confinement_cell_auschwitz_1-300x300by Margo Schlanger/ from Solitary Watch

There is remarkably little systematic information available about who is held in segregated confinement in our nation’s prisons and jails.  I recently pulled together what little quantitative data exist.  What I found is preliminary, but it suggests that in many states the harsh conditions of solitary confinement are probably disproportionately affecting prisoners of color.  Full details on sources, methodology, etc. are available in Margo Schlanger, Prison Segregation: Symposium Introduction and Preliminary Data on Racial Disparities, 118 Mich. J. Race & Law 241 (2013).

The best sources of demographic information about prisoners are the various surveys and censuses conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). While no BJS publication directly addresses the issue, and no BJS dataset allows its full analysis, it is possible to glean something from the most recent BJS prison census, the 2005 Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities. I present in the Table that follows data derived from that census for seven state facilities. I also include, for comprehensiveness, information from a 2012 NYCLU report on New York supermax confinement. (Even so, the table covers only a very small portion of the nation’s tens of thousands of supermax prisoners.) (more…)

Lawyers for Russell Maroon Shoatz submit request to UN Special Rapporteur on Torture

maroonFrom Free Russell Maroon Shoatz

October 17, 2013: Pittsburgh PA —  Lawyers for Russell Maroon Shoatz submitted a communication to the United Nations Special Rapportuer on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Juan Mendez, requesting that he inquire into Shoatz’s nearly 30 years of solitary confinement within the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (PA DOC). Shoatz is a 70-year-old, former Black Panther Party member who has been locked in solitary confinement at various state prisons for the past 22 consecutive years, and 28 of the past 30 years.

The request comes at a time when the campaign to release Shoatz from solitary confinement has been gathering increasing international attention. In August, Nobel Peace Prize laureates Jose Ramos-Horta of East Timor, Mairead Corrigan Maguire of Northern Ireland, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa marked the occasion of Maroon’s 70th birthday by sending a letter to PA DOC Secretary John Wetzel that read: “We also affirm, in the strongest possible humanitarian terms, that now is the time for the immediate and unconditional release from solitary confinement and restricted housing of Russell Maroon Shoatz. After decades of solitary confinement – including the past 22 consecutive years – there is no reason for further delay. Continued confinement in 23-hour-a-day isolation is nothing short of torture.”

For the last 23 years, Shoatz has had an impeccable disciplinary record, and has not received on serious rule violation during this time. Despite his model behavior, advancing years, and health problems, the PA DOC has refused to release this father, grandfather, great-grandfather, human rights advocate, and published author into the general prison population. (more…)

Freeing Marissa Alexander

Marissa_Sign_on_Restaurantby Victoria Law/, from Truthout

Three years ago, a single warning shot sent Marissa Alexander to prison. Last month, an appeals court overturned her conviction, ruling that the jury received flawed instructions on self-defense. Supporters are calling for the prosecutor to drop all charges rather than subject Alexander to a new trial.

As reported earlier on Truthout, Marissa Alexander, a mother of three and a survivor of abuse, had given birth to a baby girl in July 2010. The previous year, she had obtained a restraining order against her ex-husband Rico Gray. When she learned that she was pregnant, she amended it to remove the ban on contact while maintaining the rest of the restraining order.

On August 1, 2010, she and Gray were at home when Gray attacked her. “He assaulted me, shoving, strangling and holding me against my will, preventing me from fleeing all while I begged for him to leave,” Alexander recounted in an open letter to supporters.  This was not the first time that he had assaulted her. (more…)