Download 261.01 Kb.
|Bill Dunne #10916-086|
Oscar López Rivera
Mutulu Shakur #83205-012
Abdul Majid (Anthony Laborde) #83-A-0483
Zolo Agona Azania
Sekou Odinga #05228-054
David Gilbert #83A6158
Bashir Hameed/York #82-A-6313
Maliki Shakur Latine
Jaan Karl Laaman #W 87237
The following was written by Bill Dunne:
My name is Bill Dunne. I fell in 1979 as a result of an effort to effect the armed liberation of a comrade from jail. My politics fall in the anarcho-communist realm: radical socialism somewhere between rigid and hierarchical vanguard parties and disorganized and scattered non-parties. They aim at an egalitarian and democratic social organization in which all people will have the greatest possible freedom to develop their full human potential.
I was made a prisoner of the state on October 14, 1979 in Seattle, Washington. Late that evening, I was picked up by paramedics while under the influence of police bullets near a shot-up and wrecked car containing some weapons and a dead jail escapee. According to the ensuing state and federal charges, I and a codefendant and unknown other associates of a San Francisco anarchist collective had conspired to effect a comrade’s armed liberation from a Seattle jail and attempted to execute the plot on October 14, 1979. The charges further alleged the operation was financed by bank expropriation and materially facilitated by illegal acquisition of weapons, explosives, vehicles, ID and other equipment.
After long subjection to atrocious jail conditions and three sensationalized trials, I got a 90 year sentence in 1980. I subsequently got a consecutive 15 years as a result of an attempted self-emancipation in 1983…
…I have contested my imprisonment legally, and recently filed another challenge. Contrary to applicable law, my federal conspiracy prosecution constituted double jeopardy, secret government information was used in imposing the sentence, and the written sentence is 50 years longer than the controlling oral sentence. That challenge languishes in federal court in Seattle.
My political motivation is without reservation radical left up to and including the left of people’s revolution by any means necessary. I know of no single ideology whose name adequately defines my politics.
Oscar Lopez Rivera was a leader in the Armed Forces of National Liberation for Puerto Rican Independence, and was sentenced to 55 years for seditious conspiracy, which included the bombing of 28 targets in the Chicago area.
Oscar López-Rivera was born in San Sebastian, Puerto Rico on January 6, 1943. At the age of 12, he moved to Chicago with his family. He was a well-respected community activist and a prominent independence leader for many years prior to his arrest. Oscar was one of the founders of the Rafael Cancel Miranda High School, now known as the Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High School and the Juan Antonio Corretjer Puerto Rican Cultural Center. He was a community organizer for the Northwest Community Organization (NCO), ASSPA, ASPIRA and the 1st Congregational Church of Chicago. He helped to found FREE, (a half-way house for convicted drug addicts) and ALAS (an educational program for Latino prisoners at Stateville Prison in Illinois).
He was active in various community struggles, mainly in the area of health care, employment and police brutality. He also participated in the development of the Committee to Free the Five Puerto Rican Nationalists. In 1975, he was forced underground, along with other comrades. He was captured on May 29, 1981, after 5 years of being pursued by the FBI as one of the most feared fugitives from US justice.
Oscar, who has a daughter named Clarissa, is currently serving a 55-year sentence for seditious conspiracy and other charges. He was convicted of conspiracy to escape along with Jaime Delgado, (a veteran independence leader), Dora Garcia, (a prominent community activist) and Kojo Bomani-Sababu, a New Afrikan political prisoner.
Oscar was one of 12 FALN Puerto Rican prisoners offered clemency by the Clinton Administration in the fall of 1999. He denied clemency. Now he faces at least 20 more years in prison.
Dr. Mutulu Shakur is a New Afrikan prisoner. Mutulu Shakur was born on August 8, 1950, in Baltimore, Maryland as Jeral Wayne Williams. At age seven he moved to Jamaica, Queens, New York City with his mother and younger sister. Shakur's political and social consciousness began to develop early in his life. His mother suffered not only from being Black and female, but was also blind. These elements constituted Shakur's first confrontation with the state, while assisting his mother to negotiate through the maze that made up the social service
system. Through this experience Shakur learned that the system did not operate in the interests of Black people and that Black people must control the institutions that affect their lives.
Since the age 16, Dr. Shakur has been a part of the New Afrikan
Independence Movement. During the late sixties Dr. Shakur was also politically active and worked with the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM), a Black Nationalist group
which struggled for Black self-determination and socialist change in America. Dr Shakur also worked very closely with the Black Panther Party supporting his brother Lumumba Shakur and Zayd.
In 1970 Dr. Shakur was employed by the Lincoln Detox (detoxification)
Community (addiction treatment) Program as a political education
instructor. His role evolved to include counseling and treatment of
withdrawal symptoms with acupuncture. Dr. Shakur became certified and licensed to practice acupuncture in the State of California in 1976. Eventually he became the Program's Assistant Director and remained associated with the program until 1978.
From 1978 to 1982, Dr. Shakur was the Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North America (BAAANA) and the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture. By the late 1970's Dr. Shakur's work in acupuncture and drug detoxification was both nationally and internationally known and he was invited to address members of the medical community around the world. Dr. Shakur lectured on his work at many medical conferences, and was invited
to the People's Republic of China. In addition in his work for the Charles Cobb Commission for Racial Justice for the National Council of Churches he developed their anti-drug program.
Dr. Shakur has furthermore been a dedicated worker and champion in the
struggle against political imprisonment and political convictions of Black
Activists in America. He was the founding member of the National Committee to Free Political Prisoners.
In March 1982, Dr. Shakur and 10 others were indicted by a federal grand jury under a set of U.S. conspiracy laws called "Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization" (RICO) laws. These conspiracy laws were ostensibly developed to aid the government in its prosecution of organized crime figures; however, they have been used with varying degrees of success against revolutionary organizations. Dr. Shakur was charged with conspiracy and participation in a clandestine paramilitary unit that carried out actual and attempted expropriations from several banks. Eight incidents were alleged to have occurred between December 1976 to October
1981. In addition he was charged with participation in the 1979 prison escape of Assata Shakur, who is now in exile in Cuba. After five years underground, Dr. Shakur was arrested on February 12, 1986 and sentenced to 60 years in prison. Dr. Shakur is the father of six children including Tupac who was assassinated in 1996. Dr. Shakur is eligible for parole in 2017.
Mumia Abu-Jamal is a renowned journalist from Philadelphia who has been in prison since 1981 and on death row since 1983 for allegedly shooting Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner. He is known as the “Voice of the Voiceless” for his award- winning reporting on police brutality and other social and racial injustices. Mumia has received international support over the years in his efforts to overturn his unjust conviction.
Mumia Abu-Jamal was serving as the President of the Association of Black Journalists at the time of his arrest. He was a founding member of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Black Panther Party as a teenager. Years later he began reporting professionally on radio stations such as NPR, and was the news director of Philadelphia station WHAT.
Mumia’s case has been a unifying point for many social struggles because it concentrates issues vitally important to our future, such as the rise in prison populations, police brutality, the death penalty, persecution of political dissent, and the continuation of white supremacy and racism in the U.S. From death row, Mumia has continued to speak out for all who are oppressed through his journalism. He has published four books, and his weekly columns are published throughout the world.
On March 27, 2008 the Federal Court has ruled to uphold Mumia's conviction while granting a re-sentencing hearing. Mumia’s current legal status now leaves him with either an execution or life in prison without parole. Though Mumia's attorneys are appealing, Mumia is currently bound to either an execution or permanent life in prison.
Abdul Majid, also known as Anthony LaBorde, was a member of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army. Majid was convicted of the murder of New York City police officer John Scarangella, and the attempted murder of Scarangella's partner, Officer Richard Rainey. Officer Scarangella was murdered on 16 April 1981, after he and his partner pulled over a van carrying Majid and Bashir Hameed. Majid and his co-defendant were both convicted, and Majid was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.
During Majid's imprisonment, he was beaten by prison guards, and was awarded $15,000 in compensation. In 2006, Vivian Scarangella, widow of Officer John Scarangella, initiated a lawsuit against Majid to block him from receiving the $15,000 award, a challenge brought under New York State's Son of Sam Law, which prevents a convicted murder from profiting off of his crime.
New Afrikan Prisoner, Zolo Agona Azania is on death row for the alleged murder of a police officer during a 1981 bank robbery. The Gary, Indiana police officer was fatally wounded in an exchange of gun fire with three men who fled from the bank. Zolo was not arrested at the bank, but miles away walking
For more than 26 years Zolo has been imprisoned on Indiana's death row and has been fighting for his life. Twice he has been sentenced to die and twice the death sentence has been reversed on appeal due to suppression of favorable evidence by the prosecution, ineffective assistance of counsel, and systematic exclusion of Blacks from the jury pool. On May 10, 2007 the Indiana Supreme Court reversed Boone County Superior Court ruling that barred the state of Indiana from pursuing the death penalty in the case of Zolo Azania. Zolo did not receive a fair trial and has always maintained his total innocence of any involvement in the crime.
Zolo uses the written and visual art as instruments of political struggle — not merely to call attention to himself, but to raise the political awareness of his people, and to draw the attention of the world to their fight for self-determination and independence from U.S. control and domination.
Sekou Odinga, in Can't Jail the Spirit, 4th edition, March 1998:
"My name is Sekou Mgobogi Abdullah Odinga. I am a Muslim and a POW. I was born in Queens, N.Y., on June 17, 1944. I was raised in a family of nine — Father, Mother, three brothers, and three sisters. I was kicked out of school in the tenth grade for defending myself against an attack by a teacher.
"At age 16 I was busted for robbery and sentenced to three years as a
'Youthful Offender.' I spent 32 months at Great Meadows Correctional
Institution (Comstock) in upstate New York, where I finished my high
school education. In 1961-63 Comstock was very racist. No Blacks worked in any capacity at the prison. One of the sergeants working at Comstock was the head of the kkk. My first political education came at Comstock. In 1963, I was caught in a serious race riot at Comstock.
"The teachings of Malcolm X, who was then with the Nation of Islam, became a big influence on me at that time. After my release, I became involved in Black political activity in New York, especially revolutionary, nationalist politics. In 1964, I also became involved in the Cultural Nationalist movement. By 1965, I had joined the organization of African American Unity, founded by El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Malcolm X). I began
to move with and among many young African Nationalists. My political
consciousness was growing daily. I was reading and listening to many
Afrikan Nationalists from Africa and the U.S. and became convinced that
only after a successful armed struggle would New Afrikans gain freedom and self-determination. I also became convinced that integration would never solve the problems faced by New Afrikans.
"After Malcolm's death, the OAAU never seemed to me to be going in the direction I desired. By late '65 or early '66 I hooked up with other young Revolutionary Nationalists to organize ourselves for the purpose of implementing what we felt was Malcolm's program. We organized the
Grassroot Advisory Council, in South Jamaica, New York. We were all very
young and inexperienced and got caught up in a local anti-poverty program.
"By 1967 I was thoroughly disillusioned with that, when I heard about the Black Panther Party (BPP) in Oakland, California. Myself, along with some of my closest comrades, decided this was the type of organization we wanted to be a part of. We decided that some of us would go to California,
investigate, and join the BPP if it was what it claimed to be. By the
spring of 1968, we heard that representatives from the BPP were coming to New York and there was a possibility of organizing a chapter. I attended the meeting and decided to join and help build the BPP in New York. I became the section leader of the Bronx section, sharing an office with the Harlem section.
"On January 17, 1969, the day Bunchy Carter and John Huggins were murdered in Los Angeles, I went underground. I was told that Joan Bird, a sister in the party, had been busted and severely brutalized by the police and that the police were looking for me in connection with a police shooting. On April 22, 1969, I awoke at 5:30 AM to the sound of wood splitting around
my door. When I investigated, I found that my house was completely
surrounded with pigs on my roof, fire escape, in the halls, on the street, etc. I was fortunate enough to evade them and go deeper into hiding.
In 1970, I was asked to go to Algeria to help set up the International section of the BPP. After the split in the Party, caused by the COINTELPRO program, I decided to come back to the U.S. to continue the struggle. I continued to work until my capture in October of 1981.
I was charged with six counts of attempted murder of police, for shooting over my shoulder while being chased and shot at by police. I was also charged with nine
predicate acts of a RICO indictment. I was convicted of the attempted
murders and given twenty-five years-to-life for it. I was convicted of two counts of the RICO indictment (the liberation of Assata Shakur and
expropriation of an armored truck) and given twenty years and $25,000 fine for each RICO charge. All sentences run consecutively. "
Prison life has been very difficult for Sekou. Upon Sekou’s arrival at USP Lompoc, he was immediately placed in a cell as dirty as the one he had just left at the county jail. His repeated requests for something to clean up the filth with were completely ignored. Mr. Odinga was placed in a section of the prison where there are no other prisoners. He was kept in his cell 24 hours a day; except Monday, Wednesday & Friday when he can take a shower.
Despite the fact that the shower stall was right next to his cell, he was taken there by 3 guards and a lieutenant and is completely shackled while they move him. Mr. Odinga got no exercise or recreation; no pen or paper; no reading material, except for a copy of the Koran; no visits nor phone calls. The order securing Mr. Odinga stated NO HUMAN CONTACT!! Mr. Odingawas supposedly brought to California by subpoena to testify at a grand jury investigation. The Government had been told by Mr. Odinga's lawyers that he would not testify before any grand juries. It is a political principle which he will not compromise on.
Now in super maximum security prison at Florence according to Sekou, conditions are no better.
David Gilbert is a revolutionary organizer, author and militant currently imprisoned at Clinton Correctional Facility. Gilbert was a founding member of Columbia University Students for a Democratic Society and member of The Weather Underground Organization. After about 5 years of organizing in the above ground movement, David joined the revolutionary underground, spending a total of 10 years living clandestinely, actively resisting imperialism with arms. He was arrested in 1981, along with members of the Black Liberation Army and other radicals, after they killed three people in an armored car robbery. He was unarmed and did not personally hurt anyone. Two police officers and a security guard were murdered in the course of the robbery. Gilbert was tried and convicted for his part in their deaths and given a life sentence.
In the late 1970s or early 1980s Gilbert and other white activists took the name RATF (Revolutionary Armed Task Force), declaring their solidarity with the Black Liberation Army (BLA). In 1981, this group participated along with several members of the BLA in an attempt to rob a Brinks armored car at the Nanuet Mall, near Nyack, New York. While Gilbert and Boudin waited in a U-Haul truck in a nearby parking lot, armed BLA members took another vehicle to the mall, where a Brinks truck was making a delivery. They confronted the guards and a shoot out ensued, almost severing the arm of guard Joe Trombino and killing his co-worker, Peter Paige. The robbers then took $1.6 million in cash and sped off to transfer into the waiting U-Haul. The truck was soon stopped by police. Gilbert and Boudin surrendered but when the officers tried to search the back of the vehicle BLA members emerged shooting. Two police officers, Waverly L. Brown and Edward J. O'Grady, died in the shootout. Gilbert fled the scene with other RATF and BLA members but was later caught by police, tried, and sentenced in 1983 to 75 years for three counts of felony manslaughter.
His extremely long sentence for participating in this action may be due to his decision not to participate in his trial, not recognizing the authority of the state to try him. Gilbert co-founded an inmate peer education program on HIV and AIDS in the Auburn Correctional Facility in 1987, and a similar more successful project in Great Meadows Prison in Comstock following his transfer there. He has published book reviews and essays in a number of small/independent newspapers and journals which were collected into the anthology No Surrender: Writings from an Anti-Imperialist Political Prisoner (Abraham Guillen Press) in 2004.
Bashir Hameed was a member of the Black Panther Party and then the Black Liberation Army. He was convicted of the murder of New York City police officer John Scarangella, and the attempted murder of Scarangella's partner, Officer Richard Rainey. Officer Scarangella was murdered on April 16, 1981, after he and his partner pulled over a van carrying Hameed and Abdul Majid, then known as Anthony LaBorde. Hameed and his co-defendant were both convicted of murder, and Hameed is serving a sentence of 25 years to life.
70's reveal that when Bashir was the Deputy Chairman of the New Jersey Chapter of BPP he became a COINTELPRO target. Bashir speculates that his conviction came as a direct result FBI documents obtained during the of his political activity. Bashir Hameed and his co-defendant, Abdul Majid were tried three times. There first trial ended in a hung jury divided along racial lines, The second trial was declared a mistrial by the judge immediately after the jury rendered a decision that acquitted Bashir on the murder charge. At a third trial, they were eventually convicted for murder. Bashir is currently serving a sentence of 25 years to life. Bashir has suffered from recent health problems combined with medical neglect.
Maliki Shakur Latine early on became involved with the Nation of Islam. It was during this time that he began on the path of confronting
society’s oppressive forces. In 1969, Maliki and his brother, Shaqwan, joined up with the Black
Panther Party for Self-defense (BPP). Maliki took political education classes offered by the Black Panther Party. He studied Chairman Mao, Franz Fannon, Lenin, Fidel Castro, Che, and many others. He was also involved in transforming the theoretical ideals of the BPP into daily practice.
Like many of the Panthers targeted by the US government, Maliki found himself behind prison bars, specifically in Riker’s Island. There he met one of the Panther leaders, Lumumba Shakur. Lumumba and 20 other Panthers (known as the Panther 21) were facing trumped up charges, which included a plot to blow up various locations in New York City. All of the Panther 21 would eventually be freed from
the charges. Maliki Latine was soon released from Rikers and returned to the Panthers, only to find that the government’s tactics against the organization forced many of them to go underground. Following their
lead, Maliki and his brother decided to follow suit. Maliki then spent two years training and studying and engaging in various actions.
At 4:45 on July 3rd, 1979 NYPD officers pulled over a Chevrolet Malibu on 148th Street, near 7th, in Harlem. Police believed the car to be stolen. With guns drawn, the two officers approached the car. A gun battle broke out, leaving one of the officers and one of the occupants
of the car injured. The four occupants escaped, but in the car the police found weapons and prints linking Maliki and others to the scene. Several hours after the shooting, after the police followed a trail of blood, Arkill Shakur was captured outside a building at 285 West 150th Street, with leg and ankle injuries he incurred in the gunfight. He was taken to the hospital and was later charged for his involvement in the altercation.
Just over 2-weeks after the shooting, on July 18, police and FBI raided the home of Dwight (Jamal) Thomas, arrested him, and charged him with the shooting.
A month later, on August 7, 1979, Maliki Latine was arrested in St. Albans, Queens, by a joint force investigating a series of bank expropriations. They charged him with the July 3rd incident. It wouldn’t be until six months later before the police would arrest their final suspect, Jose Saldana. Sixteen days after the capture of Saldana, Latine and three other prisoners, who were also accused of killing cops, attempted to escape from the special security area of Rikers Island. The men managed to get outside of the prison walls, but three of them, including Latine, were immediately captured. The fourth escapee’s body was discovered
days later, dead because of apparent
Maliki Latine and Jose(Hamza)Saldana were indicted on charges of attempted first-degree murder, four counts of criminal possession of a weapon, and criminal possession of stolen property. On October 1, 1981, the two were sentenced to 25 to life.
In August 1993, the district court overturned Latine’s conviction and ordered a new trial within 120 days or his release. The state appealed, and the second circuit reversed the district court’s decision to overturn the conviction. Finally, the U.S. Supreme court refused to hear any further appeal and denied him a writ of certiorari, even through his appeal is founded upon the mandate of the U.S. Supreme Court’s own rulings.
The following was written by Maliki Shakur Latine on December 20, 2007:
I am still maintaining my health and I am optimistic about being released on parole during the summer of ’08. At which time I look forward to being a valuable asset to the endeavors of liberation and progress. I’ve been following the political and socio-economic developments (or under-developments) occurring around the country. And, I’ve been closely monitoring the “Presidential Campaign” (with all its window-dressings and the usual clichés) offered for public consumption. The younger generation have a serious, huge and profound role to play in defining what the future (if there is one) of this country is to be. Each generation is solely responsible for the course and direction to be pursued in their
lives. They can readily choose, by virtue of their own “humanity,” the course, direction and reality already “defined” for them by the
Plutocracy (as led and headed by the “Skull and Bones”) or they can
determine, for themselves, what the reality of the future is to be,
by virtue of what they know and truly believe to be right, just and
humane as dictated by their own heart-felt conscience—as opposed to
that of any u.s. government “Party,” who are more determined to serve
that of “class interest”—than any kind of just rights of the entire
citizenry! Let the people of the “Resistance” know my message to
them as expressed above. They can make a difference, no matter how
difficult the challenges may appear, its all but a passing but dark
cloud—soon the light shall appear with its radiance of achievement
and splendor! Truth shall prevail!
In Solidarity, Strength, and Unity!