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Portland FBI raids: one home vacant, one formerly housed activists

One home raided by FBI agents early Wednesday had been vacant for years but showed signs of recent activity, and one had once been occupied by young political activists whose lease was not renewed, neighbors said
One home raided by FBI agents early Wednesday had been vacant for years but showed signs of recent activity, and one had once been occupied by young political activists whose lease was not renewed, neighbors said.

A third home was long vacant before three people in their 20s moved in last fall.

Beth Anne Steele, a spokeswoman for the FBI, said agents served the search warrants at three North and Northeast Portland homes as part of an "ongoing violent crime" investigation.

The warrants were served at 4820 N.E. 31st Ave., 7129 N.E. Eighth Ave., and 6846 N. Greenwich Ave.

No arrests were made.

"The warrants are sealed, and I anticipate they will remain sealed," Steele said.

Some residents in the area of Northeast Alberta Street awakened to the sound of a helicopter circling overhead.

The home at Northeast 31st Avenue, a block from Alberta, is a two-story purple home with purple trim. It was raided around 6 a.m., FBI agents were still at the location as of 10:15 a.m.

Rosa Aguilar, who owns the home and rents it out, said she believed that agents were not looking for the current tenants but a group that moved out more than a year ago. Aguilar said she did not renew the group's lease because she had received so many complaints about them.


FBI raids three homes in PortlandFBI agents raided three homes--two in NE Portland, one in North Portland--early Wednesday morning, part of an ongoing investigation into a violent crime. The federal search warrants have been sealed and will remain sealed.Watch video
Puanani Leal, who has lived in the neighborhood three years, described the former tenants as anarchists who ran an information booth at Alberta Street's Last Thursday event. She said large numbers of people were in and out of the house while the group was living there.

She was home when the FBI arrived this morning.

"I just heard lots of pounding at 6 o'clock, and I got up and I saw the whole thing," Leal said. "I saw them screaming to get in. They were using the battering ram, and then finally the door just opened."

She said the current occupants came out and agents very quickly let them go.

Near the 7129 N.E. 8th Avenue home, neighbors said no one has been living in the house for several years. In recent months, neighbors noticed activity -- a light on inside, groups of people in their early 20s coming and going. They didn't cause any trouble but seemed to be living in the house.

Then, a month ago, an officer in a patrol car was seen checking out the home.

Neighbors said they heard multiple loud bangs around 6 a.m. this morning, followed by yelling.

By 10:30 a.m., the FBI had left. The rundown home appeared to be empty but for a chair and a desk and a roll of paper towels visible from a window. The grass was overgrown, but the grass in a side yard looked trampled down.


View FBI raids in a larger map

At the location on North Greenwich, the FBI was finishing up processing evidence around 11 a.m. At the one-story blue gray home, agents carted out paper evidence bags sealed in red tape.

Agents examined yard debris. They took pictures inside the house and photographed a white van parked in the driveway.

Next-door neighbor Juan Martinez Jr., 25, said two men and a woman, all who appeared in their 20s, moved into the house around September and came over to introduce themselves. They were good neighbors and hired him to mow their front lawn, he said.

"They mainly kept to themselves. They never really bothered anybody ... I didn't have a problem with them," Martinez said.

The house hadn't been occupied for years before the three moved in, he said.

Martinez said he woke up about 8 a.m. to his bulldog barking and a swarm of FBI cops outside, piercing the calm of the normally quiet neighborhood. "I couldn't believe it," he said. "I was really in shock. "


A neighbor who lives across the street from the home, Bob Weeks, said there had been a lot of activity and "junk cars" parked there.

"They never made a lot of noise," Weeks said. "They were pretty quiet."


 link to www.oregonlive.com

defending empty homes 25.Jul.2012 14:19

0-0

did I read that right: "ongoing violent crime" investigation?

so is it the FBI and police who are the ones "doing violence"?

i didnt see any report that the house sitters / occupiers were violent

i also think the violence is in: "this class war" that surrounds us all

i also know and share the reminder [corporate media lies]

grand jury subpoenas 25.Jul.2012 14:36

....

Three homes were raided in Portland, by approximately 60-80 police including FBI and Joint Terrorism Task Force. Individuals at the homes say police used flash grenades during the raid. Grand jury subpoenas have been served to individuals in all three cities: 2 in Olympia, 1 in Seattle, and 2 in Portland. The grand jury is scheduled to convene on August 2nd at the federal courthouse in Seattle.....

 link to www.greenisthenewred.com

No more witch-hunts! An injury to one is an injury to all. 26.Jul.2012 12:21

0000

The following is a statement expressing solidarity with the current targets of FBI repression:

On Wednesday July 26th, the FBI conducted a series of coordinated raids against activists in Portland, Olympia, and Seattle. They subpoenaed several people to a special federal grand jury, and seized computers, black clothing and anarchist literature. This comes after similar raids in Seattle in July and earlier raids of squats in Portland.





Though the FBI has said that the raids are part of a violent crime investigation, the truth is that the federal authorities are conducting a political witch-hunt against anarchists and others working toward a more just, free, and equal society. The warrants served specifically listed anarchist literature as evidence to be seized pointing to the fact that the FBI and police are targeting this group of people because of their political ideas. Pure and simple, these raids and the grand jury hearings are being used to intimidate people whose politics oppose the state's agenda. During a time of growing economic and ecological crises that are broadly affecting people across the world, it is an attempt to push back any movement towards creating a world that is humane, one that meets every person's needs rather than serving only the interests of the rich.





This attack does not occur in a vacuum. Around the country and around the world, people have been rising up and resisting an economic system that puts the endless pursuit of profit ahead of the basic needs of humanity and the Earth. From the Arab Spring to the Occupy movement to now Anaheim, people are taking to the streets. In each of these cases, the state has responded with brutal political repression. This is not a coincidence. It is a long-term strategy by state agencies to stop legitimate political challenges to a status quo that exploits most of the world's people.





We, the undersigned, condemn this and all other political repression. While we may have differences in ideology or chose to use different tactics, we understand that we are in a shared struggle to create a just, free, and liberated world, and that we can only do this if we stand together. We will not let scare tactics or smear campaigns divide us, intimidate us, or stop us from organizing and working for a better world.





No more witch-hunts! An injury to one is an injury to all.





To add your group's name to the solidarity statement, please email:  aw83499@gmail.com