[Ppnews] Parole Time for MOVE 9! - by Mumia Abu-Jamal

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Mon Mar 17 12:23:41 EDT 2008

Parole Time for MOVE  9!
[col. writ. 3/8/08] (c) '08  Mumia Abu-Jamal

     Incredibly, it's  been almost 30 years - 30 years! - since 9 MOVE men
and women were unjustly consigned to prisons across Pennsylvania.

     Although known as  the MOVE 9, there really are eight survivors of the
August 8th, 1978 police  assault on MOVE's West Philadelphia home and

     They are: Phil  Africa, Janine Africa, Mike Africa, Debbie Africa, Janet
Africa, Eddie Africa,  Chuck Africa and Delbert Africa.  The late Merle Africa
died at the women's  prison in Muncy, PA (near Williamsport, PA)  under quite
mysterious  circumstances.

     All 9 MOVE men and  women were convicted in one of the longest (and most
contentious) trials in city  history, on dubious charges of 3rd degree murder
of a city cop engaged in the  raid on their home, and related charges.  Even
if all the charges were true  (and they most certainly are not), the sentence
30 to 100 years can only be  termed grossly excessive.  At the time of trial,
3rd degree carried a  sentence of 71/2 to 15 years --so essentially the MOVE
people got more than  double, and indeed, quadruple the maximum of what the
statute provided. Indeed,  the woman got the same sentences as the men, even
though none of  them faced weapons charges!

     There's little real  doubt that they're in prison today because they're
MOVE members.

     Today, 30 years  later, they should be entitled to their freedom--and
they would be, but for the  concerted campaign of cops and local media to keep
them imprisoned for a  century.

     MOVE members  continue to fight for their imprisoned brothers and
sisters, and they ask that  you join that struggle by supporting their parole
demands.  On the  web, contact:
(<http://www.onamovellja@aol.com>http://www.onamovellja@aol.com)  for more
information (or simply Google, "onamove.com")

     Or write the  MOVE Organization, P.O. Box 19709, Phila, PA, 19143.

     As many of you know,  I covered the press conference of August 8th, 1978.
  Every  reporter present knows that within hours of that press conference,
the  police department issued a written press release giving a completely
revised  statement of how the cop met his death.  That makes sense 
when you consider
  that the cop was most likely the victim of friendly fire, for the MOVE house
had  become a shooting gallery, with police expending literally hundreds of
rounds  during the raid.  Moreover, when's the last time you've seen a crime
scene  destroyed before nightfall, within hours of the shooting?

     It happened  here.

     I also covered the  trial, a parade of legalized injustice if ever there
was one.  Indeed, days  after the trial, Judge Edwin S. Malmed took to the
airwaves to defend his unjust  rulings. On a radio talk show on 
WWDB-FM, I phoned
him and asked him if he knew  who killed the cop.  He replied, live on air,
"I haven't the faintest  idea."

     Yet, this guy sent 9  people to prison for 30-to-100 years!

--(c) '08  maj

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