(en) FBI stalling stopped in Judi Bari case.

Lyn Gerry (redlyn@loop.com)
Mon, 20 Oct 1997 02:20:31 +0000


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------- Forwarded Message Follows ------- Date: Sun, 19 Oct 1997 20:33:40 -0700 (PDT) From: MichaelP <papadop@peak.org> Subject: FBI stalling stopped in Judi Bari case.

See URL: http://www.monitor.net/~bari Date: 19 Oct 1997 16:11:13 GMT Organization: Redwood Summer Justice Project

Bari Court Victory in FBI Lawsuit Decision Available on Web Site

OAKLAND, CA -- Federal Judge Claudia Wilken last week handed down a significant victory on a major motion in the late Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney's federal civil rights suit against individual FBI agents and Oakland Police officers.

The judge was persuaded by the plaintiffs' Motion re Qualified Immunity to rule that at least nine of the officers can't brush the suit aside by claiming qualified immunity. This kind of immunity gives police protection from being sued over mistakes they make in the performance of their duties.

Facing a jury trial some time in the not-so-distant future will be six FBI agents, including terrorist squad bomb specialist Frank Doyle, and three Oakland officers, including Lt. Mike Sims.

Unfortunately, Judge Wilken also ruled that FBI COINTELPRO specialist Richard Held, who was chief of the San Francisco office at the time of the 1990 Oakland car bombing, gets to weasel out of the case due to insufficient evidence.

The federal defendants will no doubt appeal the ruling denying them qualified immunity. The plaintiffs therefore will likely file an appeal of the ruling allowing dirty tricks man Held to escape. Once these appeals are decided the case will move on to jury trial, perhaps as soon as a year from now.

The ruling against qualified immunity for certain officers was based on a showing of significant evidence that they knowingly violated Judi and Darryl's constitutional rights to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, and to enjoy freedom of speech. Further, there is evidence that the officers conspired to disrupt Judi and Darryl's political and environmental activism, and that they were motivated by an animus toward Earth First!.

The civil suit -- with its short title now changed by Judge Wilken to Bari et al. v. Doyle et al. -- seeks damages from individual agents and officers for their wrongful actions in arresting Judi and Darryl and falsely charging them with transporting the bomb that nearly killed them.

The police actions were apparently part of a classic FBI COINTELPRO operation designed to "neutralize" and discredit Earth First! by framing the two Northern California EF! leaders on the eve of their 1990 Redwood Summer campaign of nonviolent direct action against corporate forest liquidation.

The full text of Judge Wilken's October 15 decision is available for reading or printing out from the Judi Bari web site at http://www.monitor.net/~bari

The full text of the Motion re Qualified Immunity is also available.

There will be statements and analysis from the legal team after the weekend.

http://www.radio4all.org http://www.radio4all.org/freepacifica

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