Please check http://www.SHAC7.com for regular weekly updates and information on how you can help. Here's a report from the first week of trial:
>>Monday, February 13, 2006
The SHAC 7 trial kicked off February 6th, with a strong protest of about 80-100 people, despite attempts by Homeland Security to prevent the demonstration from happening.
The first week of trial is now over and the case is moving along quite fast. Jury selection started Monday and the full jury was picked by Tuesday afternoon.
The prosecutor, Charles McKenna, opened with a dramatic, yet dull statement, that dragged on for 30 minutes. Each of the defense attorneys had time to make opening statements, calling attention to the gross misrepresentations in the governments opening, as well as the fact that these defendants are on trial for nothing more than reporting on the actions of others.
The week saw approximately 15 witnesses for the government, including the Huntingdon Life Sciences' Managing Director Brian Cass and other HLS employees. Despite allegations by the government that the SHAC USA site was "causing" people to take direct action against these employee's homes, most testified that either nothing illegal had happened at their homes or that their home addresses had not been posted on the SHAC USA website prior to any direct action. Of course, none could say that any of the defendants had done anything illegal to them.
The highlight of the week is when the government called a 20 year old activist from Ohio who was "caught" participating in an electronic civil disobedience (ECD) (the act of visiting a website with special software designed to overflow a server's bandwidth and effectively crash the site) and who sent black faxes. Undoubtedly, the government expected him to testify that SHAC USA and/or its website caused him to do these things. Instead, he repeatedly said he learned about it from other places, participated in the actions on his own freewill, and none of the defendants had anything to do with his actions. When asked why he had sent the black faxes, he said that he was angry after watching the undercover footage at HLS where workers are hurting beagles.
Trial is moving quickly and is expected to conclude by Mid-March. If you are in the Trenton area, stop by to watch and support the defendants.
The trial is at the Federal Courthouse in Trenton, NJ on the 4th floor (Judge Anne Thompson) from 9 am-5 pm everyday. You cannot bring ANY electronic devices into the courtroom and must show a photo ID to enter the courthouse. All supporters are asked to please dress appropriately for court.
For more information on Stop Huntington Life Sciences, visit http://www.shacamerica.net/.