Come out tomorrow night to this benefit half of whose proceeds will go to help Tortuga House.
Tortuga House is now tweeting!
Get updates on our legal situation, whether or not we were raided on any given day, and how Sahara the Dog is doing!
Go here: http://twitter.com/tortugahouse
(from Wired Magazine)
An anarchist social worker raided by the feds wants his computers, manuscripts and pick axes back. He argues that authorities violated the U.S. Constitution and the rights of his mentally ill clients while searching for evidence that he broke an anti-rioting law on Twitter.
In a guns-drawn raid on October 1, FBI agents and police seized boxes of dubious “evidence” from the Queens, New York, home of Elliott Madison. A U.S. District Judge in Brooklyn has set a Monday deadline to rule on the legality of the search, and in the meantime has ordered the government to refrain from examining the material taken in the 6 a.m. search.
(A nice article from the Queens Tribune)
By Vladic Ravich
Elliott Madison opened the door with a lit cigarette between his fingers and invited me into his living room, which is warmly lit, topped with an antique tin ceiling and has a portrait of anarchist founding father Mikhail Bakunin hanging on the wall.
Oh, how the days have flown. Oh, what the days have shown? It is now over two weeks since the raid on Tortuga House, and we are mostly left holding conjecture as to what is going on—the proceedings against us are secretive.
After the injunction (to legally prevent the State from fishing through our belongings) was granted on October 2nd, the court required the government to show probable cause for the search. We anticipated this document and hoped to learn why FBI and NYPD thugs had descended on our house. Instead, we received a document that listed items confiscated from our home during the raid to support the validity of the search warrant that authorized the raid—which included photos taken by the FBI of anarchist stickers, posters, and emergency preparedness items (modeled by a housemate in this YouTube video) we had in the house. The reasoning for such illogic? That the raid is not connected to the arrest of our two housemates in Pittsburgh during the G-20 protests, but rather was spurred by an ongoing federal grand jury investigation—and questions as to the validity of the search can be addressed after any indictments are handed out! Furthermore, the document maintains that the supporting affidavits actually used to authorize the search should remain sealed because “the affidavits here concern an ongoing investigation, and unsealing them would compromise that investigation…[which is] complex and multi-state.”
Ahh, remember the Summer of Tweet-Love? Those heady days in June 09, when pundits and cable news anchors sang the praises of their beloved social media platform Twitter? Remember how we changed our Facebook profile pics to Green in solidarity with Iranian protestors?
Perhaps Eliot Madison was feeling that techno-optimism in late September, when he was arrested in Pittsburgh during the G20 protests. Police stormed his motel room, where Madison and others had set up a communications node (as part of the Tin Can Comms Collective) to gather and distribute information about the demonstrations. This hub contained hardware like police scanners, phones, computers and involved, yes, tweeting. Madison was charged with criminal use of a communication facility, hindering apprehension or prosecution, and possession of instruments of crime. The following week, police raided his home in Jackson Heights, Queens and he and his roommates were detained while the premises were searched for sixteen hours.
So where is all the journalistic gushing over social movement media now? It’s as though the corporate media collectively woke up after a sordid affair and agreed that, “What happens in Tehran, Stays in Tehran.”
Thanks MC Sub-Zero Permafrost!