Dec 18: International Migrants Day Vigil
International Migrants Day Vigil on December 18th at 4 PM at Evergreen Cemetery
Southern Arizona humanitarian, religious and Native American leaders will host a candlelight vigil from 4 - 7 PM on Dec. 18 at Evergreen Cemetery (3015 N Oracle Rd), where the remains of hundreds of migrants discovered in the Sonoran Desert in Southern Arizona have been buried after attempts to identify many of them were exhausted. Please join members of local medical, immigrant justice, and religious communities at this important event.
Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1984141761641602/
ICE Shuts Down Hotline
Dear Freedom for Immigrants Friends and Supporters,
As thousands of migrants from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and other
countries head toward the United States in the hopes of seeking refuge
from persecution, poverty and violence, U.S. Immigration & Customs
Enforcement (ICE) is trying to silence Freedom for Immigrants and stop
us from offering aid. But you can help us fight back!
ICE and its private prison contractor CCA/CoreCivic have shut down our
affiliated visitation program, SOLACE or Souls Offering Loving and
Compassionate Ears, at the Otay Detention Facility in San Diego. Many
of the migrants with previous caravans have been or remain detained at
this detention facility, which is the closest to the U.S.-Mexico border
in Southern California. When Freedom for Immigrants recently advocated
on behalf of SOLACE, ICE shut down our free hotline at Otay and blocked
the personal cell phone of our national hotline coordinator, Cynthia
Galaz. On any given day, we were receiving up to 500 phone calls from
people detained at Otay.
While we work to restore our free hotline, you can help us fight back by
donating funds for migrants to be able to make a free phone call from
Otay. As you know, calls made from inside immigration detention are
prohibitively expensive. A 15-minute phone call costs about $25. There
are over 1,000 people detained at Otay at any given time. To give each
person in immigration detention at Otay one free phone call, which can
be life-changing, we are hoping to raise $25,000 (that is $25 per
Please join us with a tax-deductible donation to give the gift of
One phone call can help a person secure legal representation, let their
families know where they are being held, report abuse, and give them
hope by knowing they are not alone. Learn more about the U.S.
government’s attack on our program and our friends in detention in
today’s Los Angeles Times article:
National Visitation Network Coordinator & Independent Monitor
Freedom for Immigrants
1322 Webster Street, Suite 300
Oakland, CA 94612
Phone/Text: (510) 806-1330 / Fax: (510) 422-5198
UUJAZ Arizonal Sanctuary Coalition
The definition of "Sanctuary" is broadening beyond hosting un-documented folks avoiding deportation in churches.
UUJAZ Anti-Racist Policing Initiative
Feb 26: No More Deaths Update
This is the first in what will be a regular series of updates from the court proceedings of the 9 No More Deaths defendants currently facing federal charges. One of the goals of our legal support team is to demystify this process and keep our community posted as things progress.
Please let us know if there's other information you'd like to see in these updates or you have questions about the charges or cases.
This is gonna be a catchup/refresher on the legal cases so far in addition to an update. Don't worry, they won't all be this long.
If you want to get involved in the campaign against these charges or legal support please come to Campaign Working Group meetings Sundays at 6:30pm at the Global Justice Center at 225 E 26th St, Tucson.
Thanks for having our defendants' backs.
Love Fidget+the legal support crew.
Scott Warren's Felony case
On February 14 Scott was indicted (formally charged by the U.S. Attorney). He was charged with 2 counts of Harboring Illegal Aliens (1 count for each of the individuals he allegedly harbored) and 1 count of Conspiracy to Harbor Illegal Aliens. All 3 charges are Felonies.
The conspiracy charge alleges that Scott planned or conspired to "harbor illegal aliens" with one or more other individuals. To our knowledge nobody else been charged with this crime at this time. Prosecutors have long used conspiracy charges as a tool for repression against activist groups, including the 188 protestors charged last year with protesting Donald Trump's inauguration (129 defendants had their charges dropped last month) and in a 2006 case against NMD volunteers Shanti Sellz and Daniel Strauss.
At Scott's court appearance this Wednesday (2/21) he entered a plea of Not Guilty to all charges. He is being represented by local attorneys Greg Kuykendall and Amy Knight. Anna Wright and Nathaniel Walters (Assistant U.S. Attorneys) appeared in court for the U.S. government.
Scott's jury trial in this case is preliminarily set for April 10, 2018 but this is very likely to change. His case will be argued before Chief District Judge Raner Collins.
In 2006, Judge Collins dismissed charges of Transporting Illegal Aliens and Conspiracy to Transport Illegal Aliens against NMD Volunteers Shanti Sellz and Daniel Strauss.
Scott's Misdemeanor case
**Note: Scott has the same(ish) misdemeanor charges as 8 other NMD volunteers. He gets his own section here because he has a different legal team ( he has the same one for both his cases) and different court dates than the other 8**
Scott is separately charged with Operating a Vehicle in a Wilderness Area and Abandonment of Property from an alleged June 1, 2017 incident on Cabeza Prieta Wildlife Refuge. Both charges are Misdemeanors.
Scott had a status hearing this Wednesday (2/21). His trial in this case will be a bench trial (the verdict will be delivered by a judge, not a jury) argued before Magistrate Judge Bruce MacDonald on May 29 and May 30, 2018. He is being represented in this case as well by Greg Kuykendall and Amy Knight. Anna Wright and Nathaniel Walters (Assistant U.S. Attorneys) appeared in court for the U.S. government.
Other 8 defendants' Misdemeanor cases.
Eight other NMD volunteers are charged with combinations of Operating a Vehicle in a Wilderness Area, Entering a National Wildlife Refuge Without a Permit, and Abandonment of Property from two alleged incidents in July and August. All charges are Misdemeanors. The defendants are split into two groups of 4 that each share the same case.
These 8 defendants had a status hearing Friday (2/23). They are represented by Chris Dupont and Ann Chapman. One group's trial is scheduled for
June 26-28, 2018, and the other for July 16-18, 2018. Both cases will be bench trials argued before Magistrate Judge Bruce MacDonald.
That's all for now!