Criminal Gang, “DEA” Robs Local Smoke Shop in Broad Daylight
Back in May, as part of nationwide raids, the DEA raided popular local Main St. smoke shop, Phat Stuff. Liberty activists were on-scene to document and copblock. The dozen-or-so agents loaded up a large U-haul and carted way nearly every smoking device in the store, easily $100,000 in inventory.
The ostensible reason for the raid was a crackdown on synthetic drugs, which the store had not stocked for months. Some observers of the situation believed that the DEA would actually give back the pipes. Those people are obviously new to observing this thuggery. The Keene Sentinel has an update on the case. Guess what? The DEA is seeing “forfeiture” (legal stealing) of all of the seized inventory.
The article reveals that the DEA jacked (in addition to the inventory), $15,000 from Phat Stuff owner Panos Eliopoulos’ bank account, nearly $700 from the store’s cash register, and stole his 2011 Ford F-250. As expected, no charged have been filed against any human beings. Only the inventory appears to be at risk here. Typical DEA robbery – they take your stuff, like a criminal gang, and there’s nearly nothing you can do. Does the owner want to spend $50,000 on attorneys to try to get $100,000 worth of inventory back, with no guarantee of success?
Free State Project participant Andrew Michael Jones of Norfolk, Virginia was arrested in December of 2013 along with others accused of being the operators of the Silk Road underground marketplace. Andrew is alleged to be the longtime site administrator, “Inigo”. Thus far, almost all of the news headlines about the Silk Road arrests have gone to Ross Ulbricht, who is accused of being the infamous site’s creator and head admin, “Dread Pirate Roberts”. Andrew is accused of similar allegations as Ross, “conspiracy to commit money laundering, narcotics trafficking, and hacking” and is facing spending the rest of his life in federal prison.
While Ross Ulbricht was not offered bail, Andrew was able to get out on $1,000,000 bail thanks to his parents, who did not have anything close to that amount of money, so they put up their house and retirement incomes to secure a bond. His bail conditions include 24/7 house arrest at his parents’ house and being strictly forbidden from using any internet capable device. His girlfriend, Birdie, (who is also a Free State Project participant) is the one who reached out to me and she and Andrew’s family have set up a website to accept contributions to his legal fund, as they can use all the help they can get.
Birdie and Andrew
Andrew’s mother, Judy Jones, 68, told me this about him, “He’s very bright, kind, generous and has always been an idealist. When he first told me about bitcoins, he helped me envision a world where the central banks are no longer in charge of money. If it were instead a peer-based monetary system, so much good can come from that. I have hope for a better world thanks to his generation (the Millennials).”
Unlike Ross’ case, Andrew does not face the “kingpin” charge. Plus, he has not been libeled with allegations of murder for hire, as Ross has. Hopefully, that will help with this fundraising ability. He has retained the services of attorney Samuel M. Braverman and the bill will likely be very expensive.
As have many activists looking at moving to New Hampshire, Andrew and Birdie made the pilgrimage to Keene in December of 2012 and came to visit Social Sunday. I met both of them there and truly hope he can get through this difficult time with the minimum damage possible. If Andrew did not administer the Silk Road, then he’s a man wrongfully accused, but if he did, he’s a hero. The Silk Road was (and is) the most important development to happen to the black market in our lifetimes. (more…)
A probable cause hearing was held yesterday in Keene district court in the case of State v James M. Phillips. Phillips stands accused of causing the hospitalization of Matthew “Yankee” Oldershaw after allegedly shoving or tackling him into the jagged granite which comprises the fountain in Central Square. During the hearing, sole witness Benjamin Nugent presented verbal accounts of his interactions with witnesses and analysis of video from the scene, including the only footage which partially captures the assault, as filmed by the currently incarcerated Free Keene blogger Rich Paul. Information presented which would normally be discounted as hearsay was admissible as Nugent recalled the statements of others collected over the course of his investigation into the incident. A public defender cross examined Nugent after direct examination from KPD prosecutor Jean Kilham.
A copy of the paperwork from the case reveals the bail conditions attached to the single charge of 2nd degree assault from the June 03 incident. An arrest warrant issued on July 11 was followed with instructions to not be present in Central Square, to have no contact with Matthew Oldershaw, and to refrain from the use of alcohol. A PR bail of $1000 was set on the day of the arrest.
Following yesterday’s hearing, judge Edward Burke found the state’s evidence sufficient to constitute probable cause for advancing the felony case to the superior court, where it will likely be heard before judge John Kissinger. Video from the hearing is available at Fr33manTVraw. Additional written coverage from the court by Martha Shanahan was published today in the Keene Sentinel.
In it, he argues that government workers, including parking enforcers, have no right to be left alone:
Plaintiff’s assertion of a public employee right to be left alone has no legal basis, particularly as applied to political speech on public sidewalks, and does not trump the right of protestors to express their message at close range or from afar.
The demands of the “City” are so dangerous, Meyer argues it’s critical the court reject them: (more…)
The NH ACLU’s attorney, Anthony J. Galdieri argues that the city has no case when they claim Robin Hooders have engaged in “tortious interference”:
In the context of non-violent protests aimed at influencing societal or governmental change, tortious speech is only actionable if it amounts to violent or unlawful conduct. See Claiborne
Hardware Co., 458 U.S. at 917-18 (holding in context of protest that the state may impose
damages only for violent or unlawful conduct, not for non-violent protected activity, even if
that non-violent protected activity causes economic harm).
The NH ACLU also affirms that the city’s proposed restrictions on Robin Hooders are unconstitutional, including a “buffer zone” where speaking to the meter maids would be prohibited, as would be recording them. The proposed restrictions are clear violations of NH Constitution article 8 and 22, which protect the right of people to access a responsive government and protect free speech.
Nor should the city be allowed to handle the Robin Hooders through the courts, says the ACLU: (more…)
In New Hampshire, one need not look far to find imperial politicians going about their campaigning in the streets. This does not make it any easier to attain straight answers from the candidates, as we see presented in this week’s episode in varying degrees. Jeanne Shaheen, Scott Brown, and Jim Rubens, all candidates for federal senate committee face the hot lens of another episode of AKPF #1.
0:00 – Cheshire TV opening warning disclaimer
0:10 – Citizens for a Strong New Hampshire promotional video segment
1:40 – Behind the scenes with Strong
3:27 – Scott Brown consumes local fare of Lindy’s Diner
7:59 – Obamacoin for donation to the anti-Obama campaign
9:05 – Jim Rubens asked question11:59 – Vermin Supreme’s strong plan
12:05 – Scott Olsen discusses OPD re-hiring murderous police who shot him in the head and threw a grenade at first responders surrounding his limp body
15:02 – Arrested on Election Eve
17:02 – DMV allows recording as a matter of policy, but nobody knows
22:31 – More from Slavoj Zizek on ideology and atheism
28:50 – Cheshire TV end warning disclaimer