The following news items, when viewed individually, may appear at first glance to be irrational actions, or simply isolated events. When viewed as a whole, they point to large areas of discontent and general patterns of activity. Some indicate the variety of easily-reproduced ways of attacking the current social order, whether that be vandalizing development sites, destroying government buildings and so on. Others demonstrate the widespread appeal of massive direct action and social conflict outside of the representation of parties and unions and against institutional reform. We don't think that these activities simply need to grow in quantity; but rather what is ultimately necessary is a qualitative challenge to the current system, not only through direct physical attacks on institutions, but also through the transformation of current social relations.
May 1 Los Angeles, California- May Day remained peaceful until the evening during a rally in MacArthur Park in which run-ins between police and demonstrators turned violent. Some of the few thousand participants still in the park started throwing plastic bottles and rocks at police. Then, several dozen riot police, clad in helmets and carrying batons, started clearing the park, firing a few dozen volleys of rubber bullets into the crowd. Some were struck by police batons. A police car was attacked with bottles. Several demonstrators and police officers were injured, and an unknown number of arrests were made. More police cars streamed north on Rampart and west on Sixth. In Lafayette Park, several police jumped out with batons and tackled some in the crowd, arresting one person.
April 26 St, Louis, Missouri- A report by FOX news media claims that armed attacks against police in many major cities is on the increase. The increase began, roughly, at the end of 2004 and the beginning of 2005. In 2006, four St. Louis police officers were shot in the line of duty. The boldness of the attacks reflects an growing awareness of the police as a class enemy.
"They're going to roll up in here and hassle everybody on the street for nothin, even the young children," said one young man in St. Louis who would only give his name as Mario. "They might club you or Taser you or shoot you. If they're going to fire at you, you might as well fire at them before they fire at you."
April 18 Tulsa, Oklahoma- A standoff between police and a murder suspect, 19-year-old Rico Starks, turned violent when a crowd started gathering and quickly became larger and angrier. Eventually the group swelled to more than 100 people, which began jumping on cars, vandalizing police vehicles, throwing rocks and shots were even fired. An estimated 75 officers, including members of the Special Operations Unit, were called in to control the crowd.
REPRESSION: April 10 Detroit, Michigan- The Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the house of a well-known environmental activist. He described the raid as such: “the 10 agents who searched my house were looking for incendiary devices (or components or receipts), and were looking for computer files (they copied my hard drives). Anyway, the pretext was the failed arson attempt 3+ years ago at the Ice Mountain (nestle bottled water plant here in Michigan). At that time, a grand jury subpoenaed my then wife and myself to give DNA and hand prints shortly after the incident. At the time they said they found hair or something and a hand print on the device. Obviously there was no match or the Grand Jury would have indicted one or both of us. They took a bunch of campaign literature, some t-shirts, a couple of firecrackers and some other miscellaneous stuff.” No charges have yet been made. About 7 years ago the same person was raided by police, then arrested and charged with involvement in an ELF tree spiking action which occurred in Indiana. On that occasion the charges where eventually dropped due to a lack of evidence.
November 20 Greensboro, North Carolina- Affinity groups set up coordinated street blockades, shutting down rush hour traffic in downtown in solidarity with the Oaxaca rebellion.
November 20 Tucson, Arizona-In the early hours, anonymous individuals made a solidarity action with the struggle in Oaxaca. They smashed out the windows of the National Law Center for Inter-American Free Trade, glued their locks and painted messages reading, "Viva Oaxaca" and "Free Trade = Death".
November 20 San Francisco, California-Approximately 150 people blocked the entrances to the Oakland Bay Bridge during rush hour. Paint was splattered on the doors of the Mexican consulate, as well as the doors locked shut by demonstrators. These actions were taken in solidarity with the Oaxacan struggle.
November 17 Charlotte, North Carolina- Operations slowed at a Smithfield Foods Inc. slaughtering plant after 1,000 workers, mostly nonunion and Latino, walked off their jobs to protest the recent firing of immigrants for allegedly providing false documents.
November 13 Carbondale, Illinois- Someone did $10,000 damage to heavy construction equipment used to build a site for a storage business. Several pieces of heavy equipment - including an excavator, dump truck and backhoe - were damaged. They used a drill to puncture the tires on the dump truck and the backhoe. They also drilled a hole in the engine oil panel on the backhoe and severed hydraulic lines on the excavator.
November 12 Stuart, Florida- A forklift was used to ram a construction trailer through a nearby building under construction. Damage is estimated at $20,000.
November 10 Topeka, Kansas- Someone set a fire that tore through St. David's Episcopal Church, causing 2.5 to 3 million dollars in fire and smoke damages. One church-goer said, "it's devastating, but I know the resilient spirit of the people, and it shall rise again." For now, smoke is the only thing that has risen from it, you contented sheep.
November 9 Pike County, Pennsylvania- A reward is now being offered by building contractors and the Gold Key Property Owners Association Officials after more than nine fires have been started at a housing development near Milford since last summer. Someone has torched at least nine homes under construction in less than five months. The first one was set ablaze on June 16. The last one happened just a few weeks ago. All the new and nearly complete homes were destroyed. Residents are reportedly scared of being hit. It's possible the person doing this is scared of their homes blighting the horizon.
October 26 Lakeland, Florida- The state fire marshal has concluded that a fire that destroyed an expensive house being built here was arson, and investigators are checking for links to another suspicious fire that occurred a few hours later. The under construction 5,244-square-foot house was destroyed, an estimated loss of about $600,000. The fire was similar to one that was reported on Oct. 15, in a planned subdivision nearby. In that fire, a 4,700-square-foot house was destroyed.
October 9 Boston, Massachusetts- A statue of Christopher Columbus was paint bombed on the night marking his celebration. Excerpts of the statement that went with the claim for this action said: "The continued colonization of this continent and others must cease now. The people must move towards reparations and accountable community relations. On this Columbus Day may we, instead, remember our call to action to take down the systems of white power and to truly advocate social justice for all!"
Reparations is merely asking for crumbs because of past capitalist exploitation without seeking the destruction of that same system in the present. "Accountable community relations" is confusing terminology for what probably is a request that the government communicate with people about how they will be oppressed. And finally, taking down "white power" assumes that power held by white people is the only power worth fighting against. Power used against our ability to decide how we will live is repulsive no matter who is excersizing it.
October 6 Pittsburg, Pennsylvania- Jeb Bush, brother of President Bush and governor of Florida, was harassed near a demonstration at a military recruitment station and forced to flee. Police tazered two people. After the march left, the front door of the station was smashed.
October 5 New York City, New York- As a demonstration went on outside Roone Arledge Auditorium at Columbia University, Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist was heckled and confronted onstage by students, prompting a fistfight between students and the Minutemen.
October 5 San Francisco, California- A demonstration was held today in solidarity with Ariana Huemer, an animal liberation activist subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury. Huemer, along with at least ten other animal liberation activists, was subpoenaed last year to appear before a similar grand jury. Huemer appeared before that grand jury in January, but refused to testify, and was later excused. Huemer and three other activists refused to cooperate with the grand jury at that time.
Huemer and fellow activist Nadia Winstead were subpoenaed again in June to appear before a new grand jury. As with the 2005 grand jury, the government is allegedly investigating the "possible concealment" of a suspect in a series of actions from 2003 aimed at local pharmaceutical companies with ties to Huntingdon Life Sciences, an animal-testing lab that is the target of an international animal rights campaign. Winstead has already appeared before the new grand jury on August 17, and, once again, refused to testify. Winstead has stated publicly that she will refuse to participate. For more info on grand juries visit: http://www.FBIWitchHunt.com
October 5 Wellston, Missouri- The homes of two Wellston city council members were targeted by Molotov cocktails following their recent discussions to consider having St. Louis County police patrol their city. Some items outside their homes suffered damaged from the fires.
October 3 Repression / Prisoner Update- Today, Andrew Stepanian became the first SHAC 7 defendant to start his prison sentence. Andy turned himself in at MDC Brooklyn, where he will remain for up to 120 days awaiting a long term prison assignment from the Bureau of Prisons. Over the coming weeks, Andy's co-defendants, Kevin Kjonaas, Lauren Gazzola, Jake Conroy, Josh Harper, and Darius Fulmer will also be starting their prison sentences. They were convicted of violating the Animal Enterprise Act by conducting a financially-crippling campaign against Huntington Life Sciences, a large pharmaceutical company that tests on animals.
Their prison sentences, decided by the courts on the 13th and 19th of September, are as follows:
Andrew Stepanian received the maximum sentence of 36 months.
In addition, the court ordered the defendants to each pay part of $1,000,001 in restitution. Each defendant was also given 3 years of supervised release upon release from prison, with conditions that they not violate any laws and will be subjected to computer monitoring by the government.
These sentences, while outrageous, are part and parcel of the U.S. government's continuing campaign of repression against social movements that threaten capitalist interests. Please write letters of support. Andy's address, as well as the addresses of the others when they begin their sentences, are available at www.SHAC7.com
October 2 Memphis, Tennessee- A fire destroyed the three bedroom home and a pickup truck parked in the driveway of a person very active in the Neighborhood Watch Program, a citizen-encouraged policing program.
Early October, Silver Spring, Maryland- A military recruitment center was showered with rocks, breaking two windows and had locks glued for the second time in a week. It was claimed by an anonymous group called "BORFROBF" (Borf: Revolution or bust faction). In their communique they stated, in part: "As we ran away...we felt very much alive; while still boasting no masters."
September 30 Hot Springs, North Carolina- Someone spray-painted the word "killers," "get out" and "liars" on the Madison County Republican Headquarters travel trailer.
September 30 Boston, Massachusetts- A solidarity march with the insurgents in Oaxaca, Mexico winded through the city eventually ending at the Mexican Consulate. Along the route, pamphlets with information about the Popular Assemblies of the People of Oaxaca (APPO) were handed out. The pamphlets also focused on outgoing Mexican president Fox’s threats of military intervention in the city. More solidarity actions are planned for Boston.
September 24 California- California juveniles convicted of "vandalism" will face the possibility of losing the ability to get a driver's license for up to three years, under a new state law enacted recently and written by Assemblyman Ron Calderon, D- Montebello. Assembly Bill 2923, which takes effect January 1, also grants prosecutors the right to press for two years' maximum suspension of the driver’s license of anyone convicted of engaging in graffiti, regardless of age. Under existing law that limit was one year. For juveniles age 13 or older who are convicted in vandalism cases, AB 2923 allows for up to a three-year suspension of driver privileges from the date that the juvenile becomes legally eligible to drive. Under existing law, the limit is one year.
September 22 San Francisco, California- Independent journalist Josh Wolf was ordered back to prison for civil contempt after losing his appeal. Wolf had earlier refused to turn over unpublished video footage of a July 2005 anti-G8 protest to a federal grand jury in San Francisco. Wolf could be jailed until July 2007.
September 20 Massachusetts- 23 rabbits were liberated from Capralogics, a vivisection lab. The action was claimed in solidarity with the SHAC 7.
September 20 Bensalem, Pennsylvania- Police detectives posing as graffiti artists on the MySpace social networking web site tagged 27 people believed to be responsible for more than 1,500 acts of graffiti. Undercover police posed as taggers on the web site during the four-month investigation, befriending people who bragged about their work. Some of the alleged suspects even shared photos of their work with the officers on the site.
September 17 Scottsdale, Arizona- A fire destroyed a luxury home under construction. The 11,000-square-foot mansion was located in a gated community and was an estimated eight months from completion. No estimate on the costs of the damage was available, although the home was completely destroyed. This is one of three unsolved fires at upscale homes being built in the Northeast Valley in the past year. Also, police are still searching for arsonists suspected in the Sept. 21, 2005 blazes that destroyed two houses under construction in Paradise Valley.
September 14 Ketchum, Idaho- Internet and cable TV service to central Idaho's most popular tourist destination surrounding Sun Valley were wiped out when someone cut through a line. It left about 12,000 people without service for more than half a day. A representative for Cox Communications says the company has no idea who might be responsible. She added that the person who cut the line must have had knowledge about how it worked.
September 8 Independence, Kansas- Someone entered a Bass Pro Shops (fishing and hunting company) construction site near interstates 70 and 470 and damaged about a dozen pieces of construction equipment, including large excavators. At least two pieces of equipment were destroyed; several others suffered heavy damage. Damages are estimated at $1,000,000.
July 20 Tracy, California- Extensive damage was caused at the Redbridge development, when someone torched the second floor of a house under construction. The two-story house, valued at $750,000, was nearly completed. Damage was estimated to be about $200,000. Construction crews from Standard Pacific Homes were nearly done, but the President of Standard’s East Bay Division, said the fire would likely delay its completion by four months. “We see this at virtually all of our projects,” he said. “It’s not unusual, short of the arson part, to see this kind of thing.”
This was reportedly the fourth house under construction in the Bay Area to be the victim of arson in the last month. In early May, Standard construction workers said three houses in the same project area were flooded. Someone broke into the houses, turned on the water in the upstairs bathroom tubs and let them overflow. That damage was estimated to be about $100,000. Also in the last few months, unknown people have broken 20 French doors on constructed homes, which range in value from $300 to $400 each.
July 20 TRIAL/REPRESSION UPDATE- Kevin Tubbs, Kendall Tankersley, and Darren Todd Thurston entered guilty pleas in U.S. District Court in Eugene, Oregon to criminal conspiracy and related arson charges tied to the Earth Liberation Front and Animal Liberation Front between 1996 and 2001 in Oregon and four other Western states.
Federal prosecutors said the three men have agreed to cooperate and provide assistance to the government in the investigation and prosecution of other co-conspirators involved in arson, conspiracy and related crimes.
Each count of arson and attempted arson carries a mandatory minimum prison term of five years up to a maximum of 20 years. The conspiracy charge carries a maximum sentence of five years. More guilty pleas by other co-defendants are expected Friday in Eugene, prosecutors said.
July 19 Elyria, Ohio- Officials are investigating the second suspected arson at Stoney Brook Condominiums in two weeks after a fire destroyed most of one unit yesterday. On Friday, a fire destroyed the majority of the westernmost unit in the building. Yesterday's fire did the same to the easternmost unit. "(Yesterday's) fire was in the one part of the building we saved (last week)," said an Elyria fire Captain. Two destroyed halves makes one destroyed whole.
July 17 Summerfield, North Carolina- Three homes under construction in Guilford County were sabotaged last week. Unknown persons caused $3,100 worth of damage to one house by throwing bricks through the windows. Combined damage at the other two houses was estimated at more than $1,000.
July 15 Elyria, Ohio- Someone broke into a model home in the Stoney Brook condominium development and set a fire that caused an estimated $230,000 damage. Three units in the same block were damaged and someone threw a big-screen television into a ravine. This is the latest in a rash of fires and sabotage directed at the Dale Yost Construction Co. condominium development. “Somebody may have a grudge,” said one policeman. No shit, asshole.
June 23 Mokena, Illinois- Someone or some people have repeatedly damaged construction equipment at a development site, twice leaving behind slogans written in pink spray paint. The sabotage started soon after hundreds of trees, some of them 200 years old, were cut down to make way for the 146-home Whisper Creek subdivision last fall. On June 3, windows were broken on three bulldozers, three scrapers and a pickup truck, and grease was poured inside several of the vehicles. "No more new houses" and "Fuck Mokena" were written in the dirt with pink spray paint. Longtime area residents are displeased with the development. "It's very sad," said one resident. "It used to look like pure forest, and now when you go down the street it looks like you're on the moon." Capitalism will desolate everything if it is profitable to do so. Apparently not everyone reacts to this progress by sitting on their hands.
June 15 Elyria, Ohio- A condominium was damaged on two sides from a suspected arson fire. Garage doors, vinyl siding and pavement at several other condos were spray painted with graffiti about Dale Yost, developer of the housing project. Graffiti was also painted on a truck and backhoe.
June 13 TRIAL UPDATE- The SHAC 7, a group of people accused of threatening the business functions of a large lab animal supplier, appeared in court in New Jersey, for their motions for a new trial to be heard and to discuss a sentencing date. Their motions were denied, and a new sentencing date has been set. Sentencing will be September 12, at the federal courthouse in Trenton, New Jersey. Some are facing up to 11 years in prison. Visit www.shac7.com for more info and ways to help.
June 13 Grand Rapids, Michigan- A mobile police station was attacked with a molotov cocktail, burning out the floor of the office. The police chief and mayor said they believed the "vandals" were sending a message: Police are not welcome in the neighborhood. City leaders vowed to send a return message: Police are not backing down. Of course they wouldn't. But neither are they operating freely in a climate of social peace anymore.
June 13 Los Angeles, California- A combined force of sheriffs, LAPD, fire department and bulldozers raided and destroyed the South Central Farm, a community garden and farm located in southern Los Angeles. Anarchists barricaded the streets with overturned dumpsters and a mattress early in the morning. Inside the farm was a tree sit and a lockdown by farmers and others. Around 45 people were arrested and the garden was bulldozed by late in the afternoon.
June 13 Petaluma, California- About $50,000 worth of damage has been done to the St. Vincent de Paul Church in three attacks over the past week. First, three stained-glass windows were broken out by projectiles. Then later, an unlit molotov cocktail was thrown through another stained-glass window into the church library. Finally, a fifth stained-glass window had been broken on another night. Obviously, someone does not like this church. Is it possible that is because churches are oppressive moral and psychological prisons?
June 12 Boston, Massachusetts- Local media revealed that a week ago someone beheaded a park's Christopher Columbus statue made of Italian marble. While some Americans love the mythologized hero of Columbus, many others wish the man and his crew had been beheaded when first reaching the shores of Guanahani (San Salvador, in what is now the Bahamas). Instead, his despicable monuments receive yearly attacks.
June 11 Grass Valley, California- A construction site for the new Hills Flat Lumber Co. store was sabotaged. Anonymous individuals broke windows, wrecked a water tank, cut hoses, tore out the electrical harnesses of three drill rigs and spray-painted slogans on heavy construction equipment. The worst damage was done to drilling equipment. At Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital nearby, rocks were thrown through two windows at an outpatient center under construction. Red and fluorescent orange spray paint was used to leave a few messages: "Trees = Life," "Thanks for Killing the Earth," and "You Waste Life." The letter A in a circle was left on several pieces of equipment.
June 10 Phoenix, Arizona- Twenty-five people demonstrated at the FBI office against the current repression against earth and animal social movements. Demonstrators chanted "Fuck the FBI!" and "Fuck John E. Lewis." Lewis is the new director of the Phoenix FBI, and has stated on numerous occasions that he believes "eco-terror" to be the most dangerous threat to the American way of life.
June 9 Rovolon, Italy- A mink farm building was set on fire, causing thousands of euros of damage. The flames devoured the building where the farmer stored food. All refrigerator cells, mixing tools, silos and various machinery were turned to ashes. The flames ignited in several points of the building at 4am and the fire squads had to work until 12 to extinguish them all. The building has serious damage and will likely be unusable in the future.
June 8 Glendale, Arizona- Damage is estimated at at least $5 million following fires set inside two Wal-Mart stores. Most of the damage was not from fire but from smoke and damage from the sprinkler system water. The first fire occurred about 10 p.m. in the back of the store, forcing about 120 employees to evacuate the building. The second began about 45 minutes later, again in the back of the store, this time chasing about 75 employees.
June 8 Pittsburg, Pennsylvania- Angered over the recent massacres in Haditha and elsewhere in Iraq, 60 people demonstrated in the streets of the upscale Shadyside neighborhood. Traffic was blocked with street signs and a dumpster pulled into the road. A window was smashed and rocks were thrown at several corporate stores.
June 8 Augusta, Maine- State police have asked about a dozen environmental activists in Maine to provide samples of their DNA as part of an ongoing criminal investigation. The investigation may be related to a confrontation last April with Earth First! members and police on Sears Island. It could also be related to sabotage last year at the offices of the Plum Creek development company, who has proposed a large-scale development for the Moosehead Lake region. The police said they are likely to retain the two voluntary DNA samples already obtained. It is any wonder why any one would cooperate with the government and its criminalization of social struggle.
June 8 Sussex County, Delaware- Two fires were set at construction site office trailers. The first fire happened at the Heritage Shores Development in Bridgeville. The damage is estimated at around $40,000. The second fire at the Mearfield Development in Seaford happened less than an hour later and its damages were around $20,000.
June 6 Elyria, Ohio- Someone burned a portion of a condominium building frame and broke a window. A semi truck had its tires deflated and a portion of an “oversized load” sign on the truck was burned.
June 5 Delaware- Thirty-five hens were liberated from a large battery cage egg facility by anonymous animal liberationists.
June 1 Gilbert, Arizona- Seven houses under construction were set fire to. The fire, in a K. Hovnanian Homes development southwest of Power and Ray roads, caused an estimated $500,000 in damages, destroying four houses and damaging three others. According to authorities, the fire started in one house, spreading quickly to the others. The fire spread quickly because the houses were in the framing stage, a vulnerable point because untreated lumber burns quickly, said Scott Smith, regional president for New Jersey-based K. Hovnanian Homes. K. Hovnanian Homes, which is building seven developments around the Valley, has had about four fires in the last 12 years that started under "suspicious" circumstances, Smith said.
June 1 Carrboro, North Carolina- A Rock Haven Road construction site was sabotaged when someone discharged a fire extinguisher into the exhaust pipe of a bulldozer and smashed the windows of a Bobcat loader.
May 30 Camp Dick, Kentucky– Someone set fire to a house nearly-completed in a new subdivision off of U.S. 27. The house was gutted. It is not uncommon for people in surrounding communities to take direct action against developments that they have no power in stopping otherwise.
May 29 High Point, North Carolina- The Springfield Baptist Church, which had been broken into three times in the past few months, was damaged when someone set fire to it. The blaze damaged several rooms behind the sanctuary, including the church pastor's office. Smoke also caused extensive damage in other areas, including the sanctuary and the Sunday school department.
May 23 Nashua, New Hampshire- Someone damaged the Milford Christian Academy, forcing the temporary closure of the school. Christian academies such as this enforce strict codes of dress and behavior as well as indoctrinating religious morality into all those who are forced to attend. It is possible actions like these are a direct reaction to this.
May 10 Prescott, Arizona- Heavy equipment was sabotaged at a construction site. An excavator and bulldozer sustained $10,000 in damages
April 29 Howard Lake, Minnesota- Latzig Mink Ranch was raided for the second time in ten years. Hundreds of mink were freed and breeding information was destroyed. The action was claimed in solidarity with Peter Young, who is currently being held prisoner in the U.S. for fur farm liberations.
April 20 Princeton, New Jersey- Someone destroyed an anti-abortion display at Princeton University, one week after a professor was caught on film with students, trashing a pro-life display at Northern Kentucky University. Members of Princeton Pro-Life set up a pro-life flag display to "remember the 347 students...not attending Princeton this year because of abortion." The sign in front of the display had been trampled and computer printouts taped over it with the message "support smaller class sizes: support abortion" and "347 rusty coat hangers were saved from mangling and mutilation."
April 18 Santa Cruz, California- More than 15 SUVs were vandalized in Santa Cruz last weekend. Some vehicles had their tires slashed and others had graffiti such as "guzzle" and "oil equals blood" spray-painted on them. FBI Special Agent LaRae Quy said that the FBI is trying to determine if the attacks had any connection to eco-terrorists. "The FBI is looking into the incident to determine whether there are eco-terrorism connections. At this point, the FBI has not opened an investigation into the matter,'' Quy said in a statement. Increased funding for government repression, as well as the ongoing repeal of former minimum civil liberties laws, has given the FBI more power to be the political police force they have always been.
April 14 Maui, Hawaii- Fire was set to the Pukalani Country Club, canceling over 600 people's reservations for the Easter holiday. The fire started in a golf cart garage, destroying at least 35 golf carts and then spreading to the club's restaurant and pro shop. The restaurant sustained heavy smoke damage, and its air conditioners and ceilings were burnt. Police estimate damages at $1.5 million. A manager for the club had this to say: "And I feel for all these people (at the club) who don't have jobs. That's what bothers me." Likewise, some workers are bothered even more by having to work at an exclusive country club reserved for the social festivities of the rich.
April 10 Hilo, Hawaii- Someone set fire to the Waiakea High School's administration building and caused an estimated $1.5 million in damages. The fire was the third one deliberately set on the Waiakea campus in the past eight weeks. The other two fires on Feb. 15 and April 5 did only minor damage to two portable classroom buildings. As common as school sabotage is, at high schools it is arguably a reaction to the meaninglessness and discipline of schooling. This newest fire was targetting the administrators who enforce the rules of and detention in the school.
April 7 Repression Update- U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott and FBI Special Agent Drew Parenti announced a new three-count indictment in Sacramento, California charging four people with conspiracy to commit arson, arson of a government building and use of a destructive device during and in relation to a crime of violence.
Those charged are Canadian Darren Thurston, 36, who remains in custody in Portland, Oregon. Two others previously indicted, Rebecca Rubin, 32, and Joseph Dibee, 38, who are currently fugitives, and the fourth person named for the first time in this indictment, Justin Solondz, 26, who is also considered a fugitive
Dibee is among three suspects earlier charged with torching the Cavel West horse slaughterhouse in Redmond, Ore., in July 1997. Rubin, also a fugitive, is among three suspects charged in an arson fire at U.S. Forest Industries in Medford, Ore., in December 1998.
Four firebombs had been rigged to ignite at the BLM's Litchfield corral along U.S. Highway 395 about 20 miles northeast of Susanville, Calif., but only one went off, destroying the hay-filled barn on Oct. 16, 2001. A military bomb squad disarmed the others. No one was injured.
If convicted, the penalties under federal law for conspiracy to commit arson and arson are 20 years maximum, a mandatory minimum of five years in prison, and a three-year term of supervised release. The penalty for use of a destructive device during a crime of violence is 30 years to be served consecutively to the underlying crime, and a five-year term of supervised release.
"Those who would commit acts of terror, such as arson, in the name of the Earth Liberation Front, and the Animal Liberation Front should be on notice: Federal law enforcement will do everything in its capacity to track you down and hold you accountable for your dangerous behavior," said U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott in a statement. Essentially, he wishes to state the obvious and make it sound scarier than all the other times some FBI spokesperson has said it. It should be noted that this case came about not out of an abundance of forensic evidence or other clues but rather the direct cooperation of informants.
The indictment brings to 11 the total number of such defendants charged in three separate cases brought by Scott's office over the past year.
April 3 Talladega, Alabama- Arson caused a fire that destroyed Blackberry Lane Community Church, making it the 11th confirmed church arson in rural Alabama since February and the second one not attributed to the two men who are being held for the 9 churches set on fire in February. Pastor Alan Holley, commented that his congregation "...collectively decided that the best thing to do was pray for whoever is responsible." While many in America are apprehensive about the recent church burnings in the south, due to their potential for racist motives, there is also a high possibility that these institutions are despised for providing false hope and social peace in impoverished rural communities.
March 25 Litchfield, Connecticut- Anonymous individuals entered an egg laying chicken farm and took 120 chickens for rehoming. Their communique was signed: "Until every cage and human prison is empty, for the Earth and the Animals."
March 21 Durham, NC- Durham police said they found red paint on the sidewalk and doors at an Armed Forces Recruiting Center and an Army National Guard Recruiting Center. The words, "No War" were also painted on the doors.
March 21 Raleigh, NC- A Military Recruiting Center had its window broken and black and red spray paint was left on the sidewalk.
March 15 Toledo, Ohio-In conjunction with the three-year anniversary of the war in Iraq, an Army Recruiting Center had its window smashed in with a brick. Part of the communique read: "out of Iraq, out of Toledo."
March 7 Accokeek, Maryland- A fire devastated a home under construction in what appears to be the latest in a series of about a dozen arsons here over the past two years. This most recent blaze caused $500,000 in damage. Similar fires set in Accokeek since January 2004 have been ruled arsons. The fires, which caused $2.5 million in damage, occurred in unoccupied structures in the early morning.
March 5 Lompoc, California- Classroom locks were filled with glue at Cabrillo High School. Someone also squirted glue into the keyholes of most of the locks to classrooms and administration buildings at Orcutt's Righetti High School; some 150 doors were glued shut here. When the doors are glued shut, no one is forced to go in.
March 4 San Bernadino, California- A punk rock concert erupted into chaos after nazi skinheads began shouting racist slogans. They were attacked by punks and skinheads; one nazi was stabbed and another had a chair smahsed over his head. More than 190 officers ended up at the scene where two police cars were destroyed and four were damaged. Wood, rocks, concrete and a large trash container were used to break store windows and businesses were looted. Four police officers and a fan were treated for minor injuries and released from an area hospital. A total 15 fans were arrested once the scene was brought under control by police with tear gas and bean-bag guns.
March 3 Provo, Utah- Someone broke into First Baptist Church and ransacked their chapel.
March 1 Monroe, Georgia- Police arrested a 17-year-old and were looking for a 12-year-old accomplice in a fire that destroyed a 60,000-square-foot, two-story warehouse containing the household belongings of deployed American soldiers.
February 24 Tuscaloosa, Alabama- Less than 17 hours after an on-campus church blaze in the city and several days after an unsuccessful attempt to set fire to a rural Etowah County church, a fire destroyed a downtown warehouse which housed Christian apparel. It is unclear the cause of the fire but damages exceeded $1 million.
Febraury 22 Tucson, Arizona- Rodney Coronado, 39, was arrested and charged with "distribution of information relating to explosives, destructive devices and weapons of mass destruction." The indictment is in relation to an August 2003 speech in San Diego, made 15 hours after a fire destroyed a $50 million luxury apartment complex in the same city, allegedly instructing on how to build firebombs. While Rod is not being charged with the arson in San Diego, the charge he is accused of carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. This specific charge has only been used four times since it was written in 1997.
Rod spent 57 months in prison during the 1990s for being accused of assisting in the publicization of a fur farm research facility fire-bombing at Michigan State University that caused $1.2 million in 1992.
In December, a federal jury in Tucson, Arizona, convicted Rod of illegally entering the Sabino Canyon Recreation Area to interfere with efforts to trap mountain lions following public sightings. He faces up to 7 1/2 years in prison when he's sentenced in March.
February 22 Yorba Linda, California- The FBI is investigating the defacement of Emanuel Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church, which was spray-painted with violent pictures and obscenities. A 70-foot wall of the cultural center at the church was smeared with blue, red and black paint. The graffiti included obscenities, a drawing of a gun and the words "Buddha Rules." Sadly, the FBI is unlikely to ever validate someone defacing god with humor and paint.
February 21 McComb, Mississippi- A fire was set at the Spring Beulah Church of Christ, causing minor damage after burning itself out. It is the second fire to hit the church in two years. The church is under construction following a 2004 fire that destroyed the first building.
February 20 Tucson, Arizona- Five homes under construction were destroyed by fire. Authorities suspect the fires were intentionally set. The homes are part of a fast-growing area in Tucson, about 20 miles south of the city's downtown. The homes were in Rancho Sahuarita, a massive development that has been a primary area of recent construction projects. Damage is estimated at 100-thousand dollars for each home.
February 19 Healdsburg, California-A downtown law office was set on fire, causing $200,000 damage. Most people on the losing side of the law know well the heavy costs, but little guarantees, of the legal profession.
February 18 St. Paul- Someone threw rocks through three windows of a construction trailer.
February 15 Brunswick, Georgia- A full-size bronze replica of the Marine Corps corporal John Stalver's M-16, boots and helmet was stolen from the cemetary where he is buried. Stalvey was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq last October. The sculpture was later found in a nearby park. The family planned to return it to the cemetery when they find a more permanent way to attach it to the ground.
February 13 Freemont, Nebraska- Police arrested someone they are accusing for at least two of the four vandalism incidents at the Fremont Probation Office. Leigh Ann Bayliff is accused of throwing a large chunk of concrete through the front window of the probation office on Jan. 25 and throwing a brick at the front door Jan. 23, chipping the glass and breaking the door's molding. She was not charged in connection of two egging and paintball incidents.
February 10 Columbus, OH- A fire was set that destroyed the future home of the Full Gospel Sons of God Church. Authorities determined that fuel for the blaze was splashed throughout the building that was 70% near completion.
February 8 Cary, North Carolina- Spray painted green and brown triangles and phrases were left on construction equipment and signs in the High House Road widening construction area. The phrases "stop killing" and "man will not realize till he cuts down the last tree" were left in paint.
February 7 Santa Cruz, California- Five Santa Cruz churches, a Christian bookstore and the historic Santa Cruz Mission Adobe were paint-stenciled in what the media has depicted as a "hate crime." One depicted a cross with an equal sign followed by a swastika. Another stated "Abort Christ," a message one minister called "stunning and distressing." The Rev. Mark Stetz of Holy Cross said, likely without intentional humor, that the messages seemed so general that it is not clear what the person or people were upset about.
February 6 Modesto, California- A fire was set at a strip mall, gutting the entire building. Among the businesses burned down were an Absolute Loans and the American Postal Workers Union. Estimated damage was $1.6 million. Loan service companies are well known for extorting high prices for their loans and cash advances. Unions are often despised by workers who see their wages and benefits cut without any repreive from their union representatives.
February 3 Muncie, Indiana- Police released photos of homemade sharpened spikes buried in farm fields near the site of a proposed agricultural park. Farm equipment ran over them during harvest time, causing flat tires. The spikes were found in October and November in fields near the proposed site for the Ag Biovision Park in Shideler, just north of Muncie. The fields belong to one of the park owners, who hopes to attract an ethanol plant and other agricultural businesses. Police were also investigating attacks on a nearby grain elevator and at a large dairy farm in neighboring Randolph County.
February 1 Alvin, Texas- An excavator backhoe used in local infrastructure maintenance was set on fire, completely destroying the $280,000 piece of equipment. Two days earlier district workers cleaned graffiti on the backhoe shortly before the equipment was spray-painted again, and then set on fire. The district�s bulldozer, along with two other privately owned bulldozers and a tractor, also were damaged with broken windows, graffiti and cut wires.
January 28 Prisoner/Trial Update- The eleven people indicted this month for alleged ELF/ALF actions will now be tried together. All of the cases have been combined into one "conspiracy" prosecution. The trial dates have been set for October 31st through November, 2006.
Jonathan Paul and Suzanne Savoie were released on bail awaiting trial.
Support has been withdrawn for three following co-defendants, after it came out at other defendant's bail hearings that these people have decided to cooperate with the FBI by giving information on other activists, in exchange for the possibility of reduced sentences: Kevin Tubbs, Stan Meyerhoff, and Sarah Harvey. Also, Jen Kolar of Seattle has not been charged with any offenses but is attributed with providing information leading to the arrest of Jonathan Paul. It is the word of law enforcement speaking under oath that has been the source of this new information.
Chelsea Gerlach is still in custody because she is currently unable to raise the assets to satisfy the court's requirements for her release. Darren Thurston is also still in custody. Darren has an INS hold on him as a result of his Canadian citizenship. It is expected that he will remain confined until the trial.
January 26 Trial Update- Through several sources across the country, the friends of Eric McDavid, Zachary Jensen and Lauren Weiner - the three environmental activists arrested outside Sacramento on January 13th - have confirmed that the name of the FBI informant used to arrest them is named "Anna." According to the FBI's own affidavit, "Anna" was involved in gathering information on 12 separate cases in the anarchist movement. Through discussion with activists across the country, "Anna's" presence or attempted involvement in various events has come to light. She ran as a street medic during the Bio-Democracy protests in Philadelphia last June and attended both the Crimethinc convergence in Indiana and the Feral Visions gathering outside Asheville.
January 20 Marshallville, Georgia- A man died in police custody after the cops shot him with pepper spray. A few hours later several people broke into the chief of police's house and burned it down.
January 17 Tucson, Arizona- A Motor Vehicle Department office was evacuated after an attempted arson was discovered. Ignitable liquid and material used as a wick was found on top of the building's roof.
January 15 Payson, Arizona- Three heavy-duty vehicles -- a loader, a trackhoe and a skid steer -- were severely damaged at a cost of $25,000. Numerous hydraulic, electrical and brake lines were slashed, gauges smashed and starters jammed. The machinery was being used as part of a pipe-laying project for three new subdivisions and other projects in town.
January 13 Auburn, California- FBI agents in Sacramento, Calif., arrested three people they suspect of being Earth Liberation Front members in an alleged plot to blow up U.S. Forest Service facilities, cellular phone towers and power-generating facilities at various locations in Northern California. The arrests followed an investigation that began nearly a year ago by the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force and included the U.S. Forest Service and California Department of Fire and Forestry.
The information for these arrests was provided by an FBI paid informant or "Confidential Source". Local media reported the informant was paid $75,000 (plus expenses) over the two years she was "embedded" with the group, for a house in California where the small group allegedly met to "plot" the action in the weeks before the arrest and to buy "bomb-making materials" for the group. Some sources indicate that the informant, a woman also known as "Anna", was apparently a very active member in the group, authoring part of a book on the group's alleged plans.
Taken into custody were Eric Taylor McDavid, 28, of Foresthill, just outside Auburn; Zachary Jensen, 20, of Monroe, Wash., and Lauren Weiner, of Philadelphia, also 20. The three were arrested as they exited a store in a shopping center in Auburn. There, an FBI Special Weapons and Tactics team and at least another dozen other state and local police were waiting for them.
January 13 Alameda, California- Fire destroyed a tractor and damaged a dump truck in a lot just north of the Bayport housing development near the College of Alameda. Rags soaked in gasoline were discovered near the vehicles, which firefighters found fully engulfed in flames early in the morning.
November 24 Clarkfield, Minnesota- A crane used for an industrial expansion project was damaged when someone removed the filler cap for the crank case oil and used a drain hose running on site to fill the engine with water. Damages are estimted at $100,000 and will keep the crane inoperable for up to 20 weeks.
Disclaimer: The news items above are for informational purposes only and are in no way intended to encourage, instruct, incite or promote illegal activity.