The following from the kind folks at the Anarchist Black Cross Federation:
WEDNESDAY is Phone for Parole Day for Herman Bell and Jalil Muntaqim!
Call NY Governor David A. Paterson between 9AM and 1pm Eastern Standard Time on Wednesday November 5th.518-474-8390
Urge him to sign the amended Executive agreements which will allow NY inmates Herman Bell (#2318931) and Jalil Muntaqim (s/n Anthony Bottom/ #2311826) to return to New York State to attend their rightful parole hearings. We're calling him every Wednesday morning of '08 until he signs off on the transfer.
On November 4th, people across the US will be in the poll booths choosing between state leaders. On Wednesday the 5th, take the opportunity to call on some officials to give a couple of freedom fighters, men who struggle for visions bigger than Obama's or McCain's, a chance to attend a parole hearing.
The transfer of SF8 defendants Herman Bell and Jalil Muntaqim from the San Francisco County Jail back to New York State for their rightful parole hearings has been blocked by both state governors for weeks and NYS now wants to deny this right for good. This comes despite previous agreements in the courtroom between the California State prosecutors, the presiding judge and, of course, the brothers and their attorneys.
Judge Philip Moscone signed an order in May allowing Herman Bell and Jalil Muntaqim to return to New York State for their parole hearings. All parties agreed at that time that the move would be temporary; Herman and Jalil waived their rights to fight extradition back to California. This vindictive and mean-spirited procedural obstacle was immediately challenged by defense attorneys. Strong arguments were made to guarantee Herman and Jalil's right to "pursue their liberty interests" and have parole hearings. Both have served over 35 years in prison as model prisoners. Both were targeted originally by COINTELPRO as members of the Black Panther Party.
New York Attorney Bob Boyle argued in a declaration to the San Francisco Court that if the men remain in California, "they would be denied their parole hearing for years." In a subsequent interview, he also said: The state waited 35 years to bring these spurious criminal charges. Now these charges are being used to deny these men parole hearings to which they are entitled. Whatever concerns the government has can be overcome by a simple modification of the extradition order. All Herman and Jalil are asking for is an opportunity to attend their hearings.
THE ANARCHIST BLACK CROSS FEDERATION
Background. . . .
Free the San Francisco Eight!
Eight former Black community activists - Black Panthers and others - were arrested January 23rd in California, New York and Florida on charges related to the 1971 killing of a San Francisco police officer. Similar charges were thrown out after it was revealed that police used torture to extract confessions when some of these same men were arrested in New Orleans in 1973.
Richard Brown, Richard O'Neal, Ray Boudreaux, and Hank Jones were arrested in California. Francisco Torres was arrested in Queens, New York. Harold Taylor was arrested in Florida. Two men charged - Herman Bell and Jalil Muntaqim - have been held as political prisoners for over 30 years in New York State prisons. A ninth man -- Ronald Stanley Bridgeforth - is still being sought. The men were charged with the murder of Sgt. John Young and conspiracy that encompasses numerous acts between 1968 and 1973.
Harold Taylor and John Bowman (recently deceased) as well as Ruben Scott (thought to be a government witness) were first charged in 1975. But a judge tossed out the charges, finding that Taylor and his two co-defendants made statements after police in New Orleans tortured them for several days employing electric shock, cattle prods, beatings, sensory deprivation, plastic bags and hot, wet blankets for asphyxiation. Such "evidence" is neither credible nor legal.
Herman Bell, 59, of Mississippi, a political prisoner since 1973. Cointelpro's "pattern of manipulation and lies, continuing into the present, indicates something more than the ordinary corruption and racism of everyday law enforcement. It can be understood only in terms of the power of the political movement that [we] were part of, and the intensity of the government's efforts to destroy that movement and to disillusion and intimidate future generations of young activists." Write to him - 2318931, 850 Bryant Street, San Francisco CA 94103.
Jalil Muntaqim (Anthony Bottom), 55, of San Francisco, a political prisoner in New York since 1978. "The United States does not recognize the existence of political prisoners. To do so would give credence to the fact of the level of repression and oppression, and have to recognize the fact that people resist racist oppression in the United States, and therefore, legitimize the existence of not only the individuals who are incarcerated or have been captured, but also legitimize those movements of which they are a part." Write to him - 2311826, 850 Bryant Street, San Francisco CA 94103.
More on the New York 3 (Herman Bell and Jalil Muntaqim) at http://www.abcf.net/prisoners/ny3.htm
You can also read more about the New York 3 case on the Kersplebedeb website here.