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Raided anti-war activists to be in federal court with motion to unseal secret documents

By staff |
October 31, 2013
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St. Paul, MN - Two Minneapolis anti-war and international solidarity activists will be in federal court, Nov. 1, to demand an end to the government secrecy surrounding their case. Jess Sundin and Mick Kelly are two of the 23 Midwest activists targeted by an investigation that included two years of spying by undercover agents, Sept. 2010 raids of homes and offices in Minneapolis and Chicago by the FBI, and a secret Chicago grand jury.

Their attorney will present arguments for a motion to unseal the affidavits used to obtain the search warrants for their homes more than three years ago.

Jess Sundin, a plaintiff in the case, said, “The government launched its vicious attack on anti-war and international solidarity activists with two years of surveillance by undercover agents, then carried out FBI raids on a dozen homes and offices and attempted to force our testimony to a grand jury in Chicago. Every step of the way, the government acted under a cloak of secrecy and has insisted on guarding those secrets to this day. On Friday, Nov. 1, we will have our day in court, as our attorney argues for our motion to unseal the affidavits that were used to obtain the search warrants for those FBI raids.”

Bruce Nestor, attorney for the plaintiffs, writes in a document filed with the court, “Over three years ago, based upon the submission of secret evidence, the United States government convinced Magistrate Judge Susan R. Nelson to seal the search supporting affidavits at issue in this matter. Over three years after the applications and affidavits were ordered sealed, there are no public signs that the government is continuing its investigations related to these warrants or of the individuals named in the warrants. Indeed, while turning the constitutional presumption of innocence on its head by stating that the Petitioners in this matter remain subject to prosecution and therefore under ‘suspicion.’”

Nestor continues, “The government’s position in this matter also raises the question, ‘What is the prosecution trying to hide?’ [This also] … prevents undersigned counsel from effectively challenging the government’s claims.”

The hearing will take place in courtroom 3C at the United States Courthouse in Saint Paul (316 N Robert Street) at 9:00 a.m.