[Ppnews] Non-cooperating defendants enter pleas in Green Scare Case

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Nov 9 11:10:18 EST 2006


Civil Rights Outreach Committee

For Immediate Release:  November 8, 2006
Lauren Regan, Civil Liberties Defense Center, Eugene, OR, 541-687-9180

Alejandro Queral, NW Constitutional Rights 
Center, Portland, OR 503-295-6400; 202-491-6204

“Green Scare” Federal Case Nearing Resolution

Non-cooperating Defendants Remain Resolute in Not Implicating Other Defendants

Eugene, OR – The four remaining non-cooperating 
defendants in the Oregon “Green Scare” case have 
agreed to drop their request for production of 
NSA surveillance materials and data and enter 
pleas on November 9. Recent negotiations between 
federal prosecutors and the defendants resulted 
in a global resolution non-cooperation plea 
agreement whereby the four defendants will agree 
to accept responsibility for their own roles in 
environmentally motivated crimes. but do not 
agree to provide information or testify against 
anyone now or in the future. The details will be 
fully and publicly disclosed today in court.

Joyanna  Zacher, Nathan Block, Daniel McGowan and 
Jonathan Paul will appear in federal court at 
9:30 am before U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken to 
enter pleas related to alleged acts of property destruction and arson.

The global resolution agreement allows 
prosecutors to put a close on the Oregon 
cases.  It is expected that Jeff Hogg, who has 
been held in contempt of court since May 16 for 
refusing to answer questions before a grand jury 
impaneled to investigate this case, will be 
released from jail soon after today’s hearing.

Despite the agreement however, federal 
prosecutors have said they will ask the court to 
apply a “terrorism enhancement” at 
sentencing.  Should Federal District Court 
JudgeAnn Aiken grant the government’s request, 
the non-cooperating defendants could face up to 
20 years in prison in addition to the terms of the plea agreement.

“We are relieved by the non-cooperation plea 
agreement but remain very concerned with 
government’s efforts to brand these defendants as 
terrorists,” said Lauren Regan, executive 
director of the Civil Liberties Defense Center in 
Eugene.  “By branding them with the ‘terrorist’ 
label, the government is trying to justify the 
millions of taxpayer dollars spent on 
investigating and prosecuting them or other 
animal rights and environmental activists 
regardless of whether their activities were constitutionally protected.”

The FBI and federal prosecutors have conducted 
several roundups of suspects, issued subpoenas to 
environmentalists, levied unprecedented penalties 
for property crimes, and used threats of severe 
sanctions to coerce individuals to become federal 
informants.  Civil rights and legal 
organizations, including the National Lawyers 
Guild, have questioned the expansion of the 
definition of terrorism to include 
politically-motivated acts property destruction 
and vandalism that have resulted in no loss of life or injury.

“There is no question the government has a 
broader agenda to undermine the rights of 
environmental and animal rights activists,” said 
Alejandro Queral, executive director of the 
Northwest Constitutional Rights Center. “There is 
movement at the federal and state levels to pass 
legislation that would silence lawful advocacy 
and target groups because of their political ideology.”

Copies of a press packet with a synopsis of the 
prosecution, related articles background 
information, historical examples of sabotage in 
the U.S., and a history of FBI repression of 
political activism are available upon request.

The Freedom Archives
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 863-9977
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