We are planning to hold letter-writing cafes on the last Sunday of every month. For more information send us an email.
International call for Solidarity!! Free all antifascist prisoners in Sweden
13 antifascists in Stockholm, Sweden, have been served with prison sentences after riots connected to a protest in Kungsan against a Swedish nazi party during the elections in 2014.
On the day over 12 000 people had gathered in Kungsan for the antifascist protests and when the police tried to disperse the crowd using pepperspray and batons, a lot of people stood their ground in attempt to hold the police back.
In the aftermath the Swedish security police, SÄPO, singled out 15 people who they claimed to be active in the antifascist movement. 13 were sentenced to prison and will now have to face over €35 000 in fines, damages and trial costs.
The “Free Kungsan 15” campaign has so far managed to fundraise €24 000 but are still €11 000 short of the total amount with time running out. We therefore call upon international solidarity to help us cover the last bit together.
We can’t share the time, but we can share the fines. We therefore urge anyone who is in a possibility of making a donation to do so, every penny counts.
If you don’t have to means to aid financially please share this call on social media.
BANKGIRO: 627-0086 or SWISH: 123 091 64 45
To donate from a non-swedish bank account:
(NOTE: mark your donation: “kungsan15”)
// FRIA KUNGSAN 15
Some folks are organising street medic training in the Barricade Inn squatted social centre (77 Parnell Street, Dublin 1) on Sunday 2nd August from 2 – 4 pm.
It is, of course, free of charge, but donations towards the space are welcome.
Those attending are asked not to wear contact lenses.
Being locked up is pure mental torture: a French philosopher once said prison is the most unnatural environment a human could be put into. Being taken from your home, your loved ones; having your freedom robbed from you, are all bad enough but imagine being put in prison, being put behind massive walls that look to be reaching the sky when you stand under them; behind razor wire sharp enough to slice through flesh like a hot knife through butter; being put behind a maze of cages, gates and bars; being put behind a 5 inch thick steel door to lock you into the space that your given to live in, a space 12 foot by 6 foot, it resembles more a coffin than anything else and starts to feel more and more like one the longer you are kept in it; your only connection to the outside world is the occasional letter, phone call and visit. Ask yourself could you live this way for a week? A month? A year? Could you imagine having to live this way for the rest of your life? To top it all off can you imagine being forced to live this way for something you didn’t do?
John Paul Wotton started this horrific ordeal when he was just 17 years old – a child!
Brendan McConville was taken from his family, his two sons left without a father.
The contradictions in the prosecution’s evidence are blatant: all evidence used against the two accused is circumstantial there is nothing concrete and there is no evidence linking the 2 that shows either participated in any part of the event that lead to death of constable Stephen Carroll.
Here are some of the main points of evidence the prosecution used:
- Witness M’s partner, who was with him on the night in question, is unable to confirm his version of events. Witness M’s own father gave evidence calling his son “a compulsive liar” and said that he was regarded by his family as a “Walter Mitty” type character with a fertile immigration. He denied that M had visited his home on the night of the murder as had been originally claimed. Shocking evidence also emerged of secret surveillance against this witness and against the defences’ legal team.
There is much more contradictory evidence being used against John Paul Wotton and Brendan McConville. To learn more about their case visit:
The Craigavon 2’s case is blatant injustice against 2 innocent men. Their case resembles that of the Guilford 4 and Birmingham. Before he died, one of the Guilford 4, Gerry Conlon, helped to highlight and fought for the Craigvon 2 and if he was still alive he would no doubt be doing the same. Don’t let what happened to Giuseppe Conlon happen to John Paul and Brendan, don’t let them spend more years behind bars. Don’t let them be victims of British “justice”.
Read about the incident and watch the video HERE
On Monday, 25th May, in the Courts of Criminal ‘Justice’ (a building straight out of a sci-fi author’s techno-fascist nightmare dystopia), Shane was convicted of two criminal charges in relation to an incident nearly two years ago where he was assaulted, arrested and subsequently pepper-sprayed multiple times for no apparent reason by plain-clothes Gardaí policing a pro-choice counter-demonstration to Youth Defence’s ‘Rally for Life’.
From the outset, it was clear that the charges were utter fabrications (‘trumped-up’ would be too generous a description): Sections 6 & 8 of the Public Order Act; Threatening, Abusive & Intimidating Behaviour and Failure to comply with directions of a Garda. In order for a Garda to ‘lawfully’ give a Section 8 direction to leave the immediate area,the Garda must ‘reasonably’ suspect that a person has or is about to commit an offence under Section 4,5,6,7 or 9 of the same act. The POA is the most commonly-used legislative weapon in the Garda arsenal, and one of the few laws they actually understand in any depth.
Shane was repeatedly shoved by the prosecuting guard Sergeant John Brady of Store St. Garda Station and told to ‘fuck off’ when he tried to observe two plain-clothes Gardaí who were carrying out a search on someone else. After numerous attempts to rejoin the counter-demonstration he was forced to the ground by up to 8 Gardaí, and arrested, and subsequently pepper-sprayed in the face while in the Garda van being transported to the station. See the incident HERE yourself.
The prosecution case relied on 3 Garda witnesses, including Sgt. Brady himself, Detective Jonathan Brady (no relation!) and Detective Pat Keegan from Mountjoy Garda Station. The three cops couldn’t even keep their story straight between them, giving wildly differing, mutually contradictory accounts of the incident; ranging from Shane saying 1) ‘Is this going to kick off? Let’s kick it off’ and ‘Attack the Guards, Attack the pro-lifers’ 2) ‘charging’ into a crowd of which he was a part, 3) ‘stomping his feet aggressively’ and ‘manically dancing’ and ‘shouting indecipherable phrases’ around Sgt. Brady, while trying to ‘elicit others to join whatever cause he had in his head’. Several of the Gardaí were unable to give satisfactory answers and contradicted themselves under cross-examination from the defence barrister.
Supporters in court had to stifle fits of laughter at the prosecutions laughably inept and patently fabricated ‘evidence’. Who the fuck talks like that except a bogeyman character in the dull imagination of a cop?
The defence case presented two pieces of video evidence, one of which clearly showed the majority of the incident; these video clips contained no evidence of any manic dancing, incendiary statements, grunting, screaming, stomping or any other actions which could have construed as such, but instead showed Shane being repeatedly shoved and dragged around by Sgt. Brady (which Brady conveniently failed to mention in his own evidence) and then subsequently arrested.
Despite the Gardaí’s bizarre and contradictory evidence, Judge Smyth chose to disregard the actual facts of the case and found Shane guilty of both charges. Perhaps it is a coincidence that the case had run over 20 minutes into his lunch break!
Smyth fined him €300, with 6 months to pay, 5 days (in prison) on default, apparently, somehow, satisfied that the case was proven beyond all reasonable doubt.
This is hardly surprising, if a little shocking; Gardaí routinely lie under oath in court in order to fit people up and judges have no interest in probing this behaviour; how could the conveyor-belt of so-called ‘justice’ that is the District Court continue to hand out fines and prison sentences to those considered undesirable or deviant by the State if they couldn’t lie in court? The word of Garda is absolute reality, whatever the ‘facts’ may appear to untrained observers like usâ€¦
Ultimately Shane’s only ‘crime’ was to defy the arbitrary orders of a cop. Cases like this give a clear insight, through the facade of false ‘justice’, into the workings of the Irish judicial system as an instrument of social war against the people.
- Location: Criminal Courts of ‘Justice’ (CCJ), Parkgate St.\Infirmary Rd
- Date: Monday 25 May 2015
- Time: 10:30am
Shane is appearing in court on Monday 25 May at 10:30am in relation to his arrest at a counter-demonstration against Youth Defence’s ‘Rally for Life’ in July 2013.
Whilst attending the demo, he was set upon by plain-clothes GardaÃ for no apparent reason, dragged to the ground, handcuffed and arrested. In the Garda van, he was pepper-sprayed numerous times.
He is charged with ‘offences’ under Sections 6 & 8 of the Public Order Act (Threatening, Abusive and Insulting Behaviour & Failure to comply with directions of An Garda SÃochÃ¡na).
A video recorded of the incident was shared widely on Youtube:
“There was an extremely heavy police presence around the pro-choice side of the demonstration, with about a dozen of easily identifiable “undercover” cops present… I was notified by somebody near me … that the cops were hassling somebody (searching them and forcing them to give their details) seemingly arbitrarily, so I went over to have a look to see what was going on.
As soon as I came within two feet … the cops instantly pushed me away and told me that I was “interfering”. The cop that pushed me had the cheek to say “don’t assault me!”. I replied to him saying “you’re assaulting me” and he said “I will assault you!”. I still wanted to see what was going on, so I came back, but they pushed me away again and told me that I would be arrested if I tried to come back any more times. I asked the cop that pushed me away what provision in the law he was using to deny me my right to be there. He mentioned Section 8 of the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994… that provision only applies if I was ….acting contrary to …sections 4, 5, 6, 7 or 9 of the same act, which basically amount to either being drunk, threatening and/or insulting somebody, or blocking traffic, none of which I was or had been doing, so I went back one more time.”
Shane was then pulled to the ground by numerous filthy porkers, handcuffed and dragged into a paddywagon.
“They were trying to put handcuffs on me, but …it sounded like they were having difficulty doing so. I heard one of the cops saying to another “no, that’s my hand.””
While in the back of the van he managed to work one of his hands out of the handcuffs. When the cops came back:
“They were not impressed.
As soon as they noticed, the rest of them jumped into the van and closed the door behind them. The van started moving. They jumped on me and pinned me against the floor of the van. They redid my handcuffs. I heard them again say something about pepper spray, so I closed my eyes as tightly as I could. I screamed as loudly as possible in the hope that I could alert somebody outside the van to what was going on. They pepper sprayed me several times in my face and my hair. It felt like my mouth was forced open as well to make sure that they got it in my mouth: I know that if I had been in control I would have tried to keep my mouth closed. I had a chest infection at the time, so between this, the pepper spray, and my face being pushed towards the floor of the van, I found it very difficult to breathe. I started shouting that I couldn’t breathe and that they needed to give me some room to breathe. They told me to shut up. I couldn’t see anything because I couldn’t bare to open my eyes.”
Read Shane’s full account HERE
While Garda violence and brutality is NEVER justified, in this case, like in many others, they aren’t even following their own rules or the law. Shane was unlawfully arrested for no apparent reason, pepper-sprayed inside a moving vehicle, which is against Garda procedure. That he is now charged with so-called ‘offences’ as a result of this is a further insult. Of course, the enforcers of the State routinely lie and break the law in the course of their work, so this is unsurprising.
Dublin ABC will be there to support Shane during the court proceedings – you too can support Shane by coming to court at 10:30 on Monday morning, and sharing this story widely.
Anti-Water Charges campaigners have called a demo in solidarity with 12 activists arrested in recent days in Dun Laoghaire. One of those activists, Stephen Bennett, is currently remanded in custody (ie; imprisoned) in Cloverhill prison for alleged breach of bail conditions.
The demo assembles at 19:00 at the Daniel O’Connell statue on O’Connell St.
Unsurprisingly, despite the peaceful, non-violent nature of the protests, the GardaÃ have once again fulfilled their roles as enforcers of the State and corporate interests, using violence and intimidation whenever they wish. We must support those who resist!