Jan 08 2011

Support Jason Slade! – Saving Iceland Activist Facing Heavy Charges in USA

A good friend and comrade through the years, Jason Slade, is facing heavy charges in the US for his participation in a protest against the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, in Washington D.C. on April 26th 2009. For the last years Jason has lived back in forth in Iceland and is a veteran Saving Iceland and Food Not Bombs activist over here, to name only a few examples. We are calling for support of him, especially financial assistance at this moment.

During the above-mentioned protest, Jason was handcuffed after wanting to check out a friend of his who had been attacked by the police and arrested. In the end he was though not arrested until the next day when leaving the city in a car with that same friend. They got pulled over by a policeman who told them they had not given a turn signal. Shortly afterwards a policeman from the day before turned up and arrested Jason.

He was charged with two felony counts of inciting violence and destruction of property and one misdemeanor of concealing identity. Later the part on inciting violence was dropped. Both felonies carry a maximum of ten years in prison, which makes all the charges a possible 21 years prison sentence. The case has already been dropped once but was taken up againin August 2010. Since the first hearing in 2009, the authorities have tried to put Jason in a halfway house prison with an ankle bracelet as well as taking away his passport. For 9 months he had to contact a probation officer 2 times a week, without a single court hearing taking place.

Originally, 17 people were charged for this particular protest but now all the other 16 charges have been dropped. Jason therefor is alone in this case and – just like the Reykjavík Nine – has been picked out to represent a bigger movement and pay for its actions. At the moment he especially needs financial assistance for being able to pay his lawyer. Unlike in Iceland, activists in the US have to pay their lawyers in advance. If not, they can forget about getting a good lawyer who is willing to recognize the political roots of these kind of cases and fight the authorities through legal means.

We are calling for people to support Jason in this disgusting case by donating some money for the legal costs. Benefit concerts and events are generally good for this kind of fundraising. His account number in Iceland is 513-26-120777 and the kennitala (social security number) is 120777 2899.

For more information check out a support website. You can also contact Jason and his supporters through supportjasondc@riseup.net.

Please distribute this far and wide!

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