UPDATE 6/24/2020: Charges Dropped Against the Freeway 9!
The LA City Attorney has declared its determination to go ahead with an unjust and highly political prosecution of two arrested for protesting the fascist Trump/Pence regime and calling for massive nonviolent sustained mobilization to drive out this regime. These are two co-defendants in the #Freeway9 case – people who participated in a protest on the 101 Freeway in the Fall of 2017 in support of , aiming to sound the alarm about the extreme dangers concentrated in this regime.
LA Times & The Guardian Expose Illegal Police Spying on Refuse Fascism
On July 19 exposures in the LA Times and The Guardian that a police informant spied on Refuse Fascism meetings shined a light on the illegal, unconstitutional basis for the “criminal” charges against Refuse Fascism protesters. And they put Refuse Fascism, its mission, and the heroic example of the #Freeway9 and #UCLA5 in the spotlight.
Read/share: LAPD informant infiltrated left-wing activists during Trump protests, records show
Read/share: Los Angeles police infiltrated activist group planning anti-Trump protests
When Refuse Fascism activists confronted the LA Police Commission over the spying, the LAPD Chief lied and slandered to justify it.
An Evening of Conscience
On July 21, an Evening of Conscience took place at Immanuel Presbyterian Church:
Free the #Freeway9 and #UCLA5
It’s right to sound the alarm against fascism!
Choose a side or history will choose for you.
In the video below from the event, Stephen Rohde, Chair of Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace, exposes the nature of LAPD spying on Refuse Fascism. Watch the entire event.
The first trial of the two Freeway9 defendants ended June 28 in a hung jury because some of the jurors recognized that what the defendants did is not a crime. Immediately the prosecution doubled down, moving ahead with these outrageous charges, charges which could amount to up to three years in jail and $2,000 in fines. Their next court appearance is set for August 9. Other co-defendants in the #Freeway9 case are set to go to trial in mid-September.
Michelle Xai, one of the #Freeway9 who was originally charged with conspiracy (charges which the City was forced to drop) said, “That the prosecution is going ahead with this case is even further exposure of the fact that this is not about a simple traffic violation. This case is about whether it is right and necessary to step outside of normal channels, including potentially stopping traffic, to wake up society to the reality of the fascist regime in power rapidly pushing ahead. This regime is rounding up immigrants, torturing immigrant babies in cages, gutting the right to abortion and tearing up the rule of law. ALL OF US need to learn from what these defendants did and put ourselves on the line to call out millions into the streets to drive this regime from power.”
This whole case has been full of targeted repression and cover-ups. For background – including the fact these charges were put together by the LAPD’s Anti-Terrorist Division, that they sent a spy into Refuse Fascism meetings who illegally recorded meetings and conversations and a recent series of motions on the part of the prosecution aiming to criminalize any political discussion of what this case is really about outside the courthouse and on the parts of the defendants themselves.
Learn More… Spread the Word:
Read and share the LA Freeway Defendants Fact Sheet
Statements of Support for the Freeway 9 and UCLA 5
7/19/19 The Guardian: Los Angeles police infiltrated activist group planning anti-Trump protests
7/19 LA Times reports: The Los Angeles Police Department ordered confidential informant to record meetings of Refuse Fascism at Echo Park United Methodist Church
6/25/19 La Opinión: Por protestar en Los Ángeles contra la separación familiar, los acusan de conspiración (Accused of conspiracy for protesting separating families)
Pasadena Weekly: Alex Hernandez and Chantelle Hershberger go on trial in what they view as a fight against fascism
Interview with Coco Das, Chantelle Hershberger and attorney Lawyer Damon Alimouri on the Michael Slate Show on KPFK (audio)
From revcom.us: Some Observations on the Declared Mistrial of the Freeway 9 Defendants: This Fight Is Not Over! The Stakes Are Great for All Those Who Hate This Regime, and Who Wish for a Better World
In the Face of A Major Victory for the Defendants, the City of LA calls for a retrial from RefuseFascism.org
From revcom.us: A Highly Political “Non-Political” Prosecution: Government Puts Two On Trial For Protesting Trump-Pence Fascist Regime