June 11th began as an international day of solidarity with long-term eco-prisoner Jeff “Free” Luers in 2004. At the time, Jeff was serving 22+ years. Infuriated by the environmental devastation he saw occurring on a global scale, Jeff torched three SUVs at a car dealership in Eugene, OR. The sentence imposed on him was meant to send a clear message to others who were angered by capitalism’s continued war on the Earth’s ecosystems – and to those who were willing to take action to put a stop to it. Jeff is, after all, not alone in his concerns about climate change, fossil fuels, pollution and genetically modified organisms.
After years of struggle, Jeff and his legal team won a reduction in his sentence and he was released from prison in December 2009. But in the years intervening Jeff’s arrest and release, the FBI had carried out a series of indictments and arrests in an attempt to devastate the radical environmental and anarchist communities. Two of the people caught up in this maelstrom of repression were Eric McDavid and Marie Mason.
Eric McDavid was arrested in January 2006 after being entrapped by a paid government informant – “Anna” – and was charged with a single count of conspiracy. Eric – who never carried out any actions and was accused of what amounts to “thought crime” – refused to cooperate with the state and took his case to trial. After a trial fraught with errors, the jury convicted Eric. He was subsequently sentenced to almost 20 years in prison. More information on Eric’s case can be found at www.supporteric.org
Marie Mason was arrested in March 2008 after her former partner – Frank Ambrose – turned informant for the FBI. Facing a life sentence if she went to trial, Marie accepted a plea bargain in September 2008, admitting her involvement in the burning of an office connected to GMO research and the destruction of a piece of logging equipment. At her sentencing in February the following year, she received a sentence of almost 22 years. More information on Marie’s case can be found at www.supportmariemason.org
Marie Mason and Eric McDavid share the unfortunate distinction of having the longest standing sentences of any environmental prisoners in the United States. Please join us in an international day of solidarity with Marie Mason, Eric McDavid, and other long-term anarchist prisoners on every June 11th. This is a time to remember our friends who are in prison – who are continuing their struggles on the inside. This is a time to continue and strengthen the very work for which Eric and Marie are now serving so much time – to struggle against capitalism, ecological devastation, and the ever more diffuse forms of control in this prison society.
Free Marie and Eric! Free all prisoners!