STOP PRESS
The Gandalf 3 have now been released
Full report

The "Gandalf" Trial

On Thursday 13 November the 'Gandalf' trial resulted in 3 journalists each being sentenced to 3 years imprisonment. The State had brought charges against the editors of Green Anarchist (GA) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) Supporters Group Newsletter (hence 'GA aND ALF') for "conspiracy to incite persons unknown to commit criminal damage" One ALFSGN editor was found "not guilty" and 2 other defendants (Paul Rogers and Robin Webb) will be before Judge Selwood at Portsmouth Crown Court on 2 February for an important pre-trial hearing. Selwood will decide when they're tried, if together, what witnesses they're allowed, and other vital aspects of the case to be tried at a later date.

The 3 convicted defendants had merely been performing a public service in publishing news of some of the wide range of current direct actions by environmentalists and animal rights activists - this is much the same as many groups' newsletters including the Networking Newsletter. The court had found such reporting to be "incitement". An Appeal is being prepared.

"Public Interest Immunity" Certificates (ie gagging orders) were used to suppress evidence of Secret Service actions in the gathering of evidence. The police have been the prime movers behind this case - "Operation Washington", as the lead-up was known, involved 55 police raids and, at its height, employed sixty officers. So far the State has spent 4 million.

Many publications include coverage of direct action protests. Catch-all incitement and conspiracy charges threaten not only radical publications, but anyone making statements which could be interpreted as "inflamatory". This case opens the way for similar attacks on any publication deemed to support such actions.

This crude and futile attempt at intimidation will cause outrage and widespread defiance, including ever greater circulation of the kind of information which the State is trying to suppress.

A Pledge in Solidarity with the 'Gandalf' trial defendants has been drawn up and the Gandalf support group are looking for as many people as possible to sign it. There are two categories of signing: (1)Publications and organisations and (2) individuals who are in support of the statement. We need your responses as soon as possible. If signing in a personal capacity, please provide the name of the organisation with which you're most involved.

For more details, to affiliate and offer support, contact the "Gandalf Defendants' Campaign", P.O. Box 66, Stevenage SG1 2TR or the London GDC at the address below.

Write to those Jailed

Please write to the 3 prisoners:

Solidarity Pledge

" We call on all publications to fairly report the Gandalf case and the issues involved.

We pledge our solidarity with the Gandalf defendants, and call for the 3 jailed editors of Green Anarchist to be freed and for the outstanding legal a ctions against the 2 remaining defendants to be abandoned.

We pledge to throw our weight behind the campaign to support the independent and radical press, and to defend the freedom to report news of direct act ions and protests.

We pledge to report news of direct actions and protests whenever and however we see fit, and we will resist any attempts to censor journals or organis ations which exercise such freedoms. "

I/We back the Gandalf Solidarity Pledge
Name Of Group/Journal:
Tel:
Fax:
Email:
Address [Group]:
Contact Person:

OR

Individual Name	Involved in [Group]:	
Tel:
Fax:
Address:
Email:

Return to: LGSC c/o London Greenpeace, Panther House, 38 Mount Pleasant, London WC1X 0AP. Email: lgp@envirolink.org


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