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Home News Press Releases Final Group of Human Rights Advocates Sentenced to Federal Prison for Civil Disobedience to Close School of the Americas
Final Group of Human Rights Advocates Sentenced to Federal Prison for Civil Disobedience to Close School of the Americas PDF Print E-mail
Nuns, Priests, Veterans, Professors and Students Testified Against Double Standard in War on Terrorism, Put SOA and U.S. Foreign Policy on Trial

Interviews With Defendants Available (See below for full list)


Columbus, GA ? Thirty-five human rights advocates from across the country were tried this week in federal court for civil disobedience to close what they call a terrorist training camp on U.S. soil: the School of the Americas, renamed Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (SOA/WHISC). Graduates of the controversial combat training school for Latin American soldiers continue to be implicated in human rights atrocities throughout Latin America.

The defendants were among 10,000 who gathered in November to call for the closure of the SOA/WHISC. They were part of a group of 96 who peacefully crossed onto Ft. Benning, site of the school. The 35 are the last of a total of 83 from this group to be adjudicated (Forty-two defendants were tried and convicted January 27-29). So far all of the defendants have either pled or were found guilty of trespass. The trial of the last two defendants is expected to conclude this afternoon. Sentences have ranged from twelve months probation to six months in federal prison with fines.

The defendants included nine Catholic nuns, a priest, a reverend, seven veterans, union organizers, professors and students.

?The SOA is out of alignment with the values of the American people,? said Judy Bierbaum, a defendant from Albuquerque, New Mexico. ?Patriotism is not about slapping a flag in the window if that?s where it ends ? it?s about calling our country to task.?

The defendants testified in court against a double standard in the ?war on terrorism?, offering evidence to put the SOA/WHISC and U.S. foreign policy on trial. Defense Attorney William Quigley proffered an affidavit from U.S. Rep. James McGovern that calls for the closure of the SOA/WHISC, and a copy of a 2002 report from Amnesty International that calls for a suspension of training at the SOA/WHISC, and an independent commission of inquiry to investigate the school. Amnesty refutes that WHISC is a new institution, stating that WHISC "is essentially the same school as SOA, with the same primary mission??

The trial judge, G. Mallon Faircloth, is known for giving the maximum of six months to opponents of the SOA/WHISC. Previous to these past weeks? verdicts, nearly one hundred people have served a total of over fifty years in prison for nonviolent resistance in a broad-based campaign to close the school.

The SOA/WHISC is a combat training school for Latin American soldiers. Its graduates are consistently involved in human rights atrocities and coups, including the El Mozote Massacre of over 900 civilians and last year's failed coup in Venezuela.. In 1996 the Pentagon was forced to release training manuals used at the school that advocated the use of torture, extortion and execution.

Adjudicated SOA Defendants (listed in order of state)
To Arrange Interviews, Call: 706-221-1672


Key: Name / Court Date / Age / City / State / Sentence
(* Second-time line-crosser)

Carey Martin (2/10), 24, Birmingham, AL ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

J.C. Orton (2/11), 54, Berkeley, CA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Seth Cohen (1/27), 22, Fair Oaks, CA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Rachel Montgomery (2/11), Oakland, CA ? 6 months federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Dan Fortson (1/28), 43, Redway, CA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Linda Aguilar (1/27), 19, San Francisco, CA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Sondra Angulo (1/27), 22, San Francisco, CA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Guadalupe Chavez (1/27), 20, San Francisco, CA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Donald Haselfeld* (1/28), 76, San Francisco, CA ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)

Margaret Rossi (1/27), 21, San Francisco, CA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Laura Slattery (2/10), 36, San Francisco, CA ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Derrlyn Tom* (1/27), 44, San Francisco, CA ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)

Michael Wisniewski (2/10), 53, West Covina, CA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Daniel Manriquez (2/10), 18, Denver, CO ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Sarah Martin (2/10), 19, Denver, CO ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Byron Plumley, Jr. (2/11), 55, Denver, CO ? 3 months in federal prison (self report), $1,000 fine

Tiffany Winters (2/10), 18, Denver, CO ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Kelly Simmons, 19, Englewood, CO ? 1 year probation, $1,000 fine

Eric Tews (2/10) 20, Greenwood Village, CO ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

William Combs (1/27), 58, Tallahassee, FL ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Christine Gaunt (1/29), 46, Grinnell, IA ? 3 months in federal prison (reported immediately), $750 fine

Evalee (Lee) Mickey (2/10), 65, Mt Pleasant, IA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Timothy Grivois (1/27), 21, Chicago, IL ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Sr. Kathy Long* (1/28), 55, Chicago, IL ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Sr. Dorothy Pagosa* (1/28), 48, Chicago, IL ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Sr. Joann Quinkert* (1/28), 71, Oak Lawn, IL ? 1 year probation, 500 hours community service

Douglas Kasper (2/11), 58, Wheaton, IL ? 3 months in federal prison (reported immediately), $500 fine

Sr. Adele Beacham (1/28), 76, Bloomington, IN ? 1 year in home confinement, 250 hours community service

Jeremiah John (1/21), 21, Bloomington, IN ? awaits sentencing

Charity Ryerson (1/21), 21 Bloomington, IN ? awaits sentencing

Sr. Rita Gerardot* (1/28), 76, St.-Mary-of-the-Woods, IN ? 1 year probation, 500 hours community service

Sonja Andreas (2/11), 53, Wichita, KS ? 3 months in federal prison (self report), $1,000 fine

Edith Balot (1/27), 69, Jefferson, LA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Jason Lydon (2/11), 20, Hadley, MA ? 6 months in federal prison (reported immediately), $500 fine

Laurel Albina (2/10), 27, Jamaica Plains, MA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Michelle LaValley (2/11), 21, Jamaica Plains, MA ? 3 months in federal prison (self report), $1,000 fine

Christine LaVallee* (1/28), 27, Worcester, MA ? 1 year probation, $500 fines

Scott Schaeffer-Duffy (1/27), 44, Worcester, MA ? 3 months in federal prison (reported immediately)

John (Jack) Nies (2/11), 61, Apple Valley, MN ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Loring Harkness IV (1/27), 21, Northfield, MN ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Daniel Marx (1/27), 19, Northfield, MN ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Anika Walz (2/10), 19, Stacy, MN ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Michael Ugarte (2/10), 53, Columbia, MO ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Corbin Streett (2/10), 23, Dublin, MS ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Vera Brown* (2/10), 20, Greensboro, NC ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Robert Hiltonsmith (2/10) 21, Greensboro, NC ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Peter Jessup (2/6), Omaha, NE ? 1 year probation, 200 hours community service, $500 fine

Vincent Jackson (12/17/02), 18, Marlton, NJ ? 1 year probation, $2,500 fine

Judy Bierbaum* (1/28), 46, Albuquerque, NM ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $2,000 fine

Patrick Stanley (2/10), 20, Bronx, NY ? 3 months federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Doris Reed (2/11), 78, Endwell, NY ? 1 year probation

Eloy Garcia (1/27), 34, Maryknoll, NY ? 3 months in federal prison (reported immediately), $500 fine

Marie Salupo (1/27), 24, Maryknoll, NY ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Rev. Clifford Frasier (1/28), 35, New York, NY ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Marvin Warren (1/27), 21, Poughkeepsie, NY ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Caitlin Harwood (2/10), 19, Cleveland Hts., OH ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Jesse Carr (1/27), 20, Oberlin, OH ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Eric Zibbel (1/27), 19, Oberlin, OH ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Dave Tarbell (12/6/02), 21, Wooster, OH ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Ann Huntwork* (1/28), 71, Portland, OR ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)

Lisa Hughes* (1/29), 37, Valyermo, CA ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,500 fine

Philip D'Onofrio (1/27), 35, Salem, OR ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Tom Blancato (2/10), 40, Pittsburgh, PA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Sr. Mary Hamilton (1/27), 52, Rosemont, PA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Katherine Brown (1/27), 52, Providence, RI ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Judd Schiffman (2/10), 20, Providence, RI ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Marilyn White* (1/28), 55, League City, TX ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fines

Sr. Moira Kenny* (1/28), 56, McAllen, TX ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)

Fr. James Hynes* (1/28), 57 San Antonio, TX ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)

Pamela McBride* (1/28), 45 Sorita, TX ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report), $500 fines

Judith Kelly (2/10), 57, Arlington, VA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report), $1,000 fine

Jane Lehr (2/10), 27, Blacksburg, VA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $1,000 fine

Patrick Lincoln (2/12), 21, Blacksburg, VA ? trial still in progress

Jonson Miller (2/10), 27, Blacksburg, VA ? 2 months federal prison (self-report), $500 fine

Dave Depp (1/27), 66, Doswell, VA ? 1 year probation, 250 hours community service, $500 fine

Thomas Cleary* (1/27), 74, Richmond, VA ? 6 months in home confinement

Julia Shideler (2/10) 24, Olga, WA ? 1 year probation suspended

Vennessa Pustek (2/10), 71, Premerton, WA ? 6 months home confinement, 200 hours community service

Sr. Maureen Newman (2/10), 57, Seattle, WA ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Katherine Bjorkman (1/27), 19, Burlington, WI ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

Sr. Caryl Hartjes, CSA* (1/28), 67, Fond du Lac, WI ? 3 months in federal prison (self-report)

William Slattery (2/12), 18, Maribel, WI ? trial still in progress

Joyce Ellwanger* (1/28), 65, Milwaukee, WI ? 6 months in federal prison (self-report)
 

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