The time is now to support Jeremy Hammond
“You don’t have to know Jeremy to help, you just have to care”
~ Jeremy’s friend Grace said that at the #FreeHammond/#FreeBB fundraiser in NY in August. It is doubtless true. Jeremy Hammond is a prisoner pending sentencing for computer hacking crimes. His crimes were acts of civil disobedience, acts of protest against an encroaching surveillance state. He is part of a new breed of electronic dissident, a list populated by such pop heroes as Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, Barrett Brown, Julian Assange and the PayPal14. Jeremy faces a maximum of 10 years under the plea agreement he signed. The government will want the full 10 years. Will you please help us ask the judge for less time?
Jeremy’s sentencing is not going to be delayed any further. It will go forward mid-November. Letters to the court in support of Jeremy need to be in by no later than the 15th of October so they can be submitted to the court – that means you should do it now – TODAY! This is important. If you care about Jeremy Hammond, the freedom of the internet or the encroaching surveillance state, you need to take action on this now – this is the opportunity to have your voice heard on this matter. Any and all help that you all can give, including both passing this along and writing your own letter to the court about why they should not give Jeremy 10 years is not only appreciated, but is desperately needed. Please spread this message around and let’s get as many letters as we can and let’s make sure they are all thoughtful and powerful. This is important for Jeremy and important for freedom. Please speak now on this crucial issue.
WHO IS JEREMY HAMMOND?
Jeremy Hammond is a gifted young computer programmer facing a decade in prison. His crime? Leaking information from the private intelligence firm Strategic Forecasting, information which revealed that Stratfor had been spying on human rights activists at the behest of corporations and the U.S. government.
In March 2012 Jeremy was arrested in his Chicago home and charged with violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the same legislation used to prosecute Aaron Swartz. This outdated law, written before the Internet was even created, gives absurdly broad powers to corporations and prosecutors to criminalize an array of online activity and pursue extreme and disproportionate sentences. By contrast, of Jeremy’s co-defendants in Ireland and in the U.K. none will spend more than 16 months in prison, and many have been released already.
Jeremy has been denied bail, cut off from his family, and held in solitary confinement– treatment normally reserved for the most egregious offenses. He did nothing for personal gain and everything in hopes of making the world a better place. He is facing a maximum sentence of ten years, but the minimum is zero. He has been jailed since March 2012 awaiting trial and now sentencing. It’s time for him to come home.
Jeremy Hammond Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeremy_Hammond
Rolling Stone Article: http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/the-rise-and-fall-of-jeremy-hammond-enemy-of-the-state-20121207
Chicago Magazine: http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/July-2007/The-Hacktivist/
Huffington Post Article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/vivien-lesnik-weisman/post_4885_b_3352308.html
THE DEADLINE FOR SUBMITTING THESE LETTERS IS OCTOBER 15, 2013.
Completed letters can be (1) faxed to 347-402-2014, (2) scanned and emailed to sarah at kunstlerlaw dot net, or (3) mailed to:
The Law Office of Susan G. Kellman
25 Eighth Avenue
Brooklyn, New York 11217
Please do not send your letter directly to the Court – it will not be read.
It is much better if letters are signed, have the appearance of coming from real people, and have return addresses. We understand if people wish to remain anonymous, and would prefer they submit letters anonymously than not at all, but the Judge will place much greater weight on the letters that include this information.
It is preferential that letters go straight to Sarah Kuntsler or to Susan Kellman’s office. For those that wish to participate but still wish to retain their privacy/anonymity: I will collect letters to go to Ms. Kellman’s office. If you want your letter printed out and do not want to send it straight to Jeremy’s attorneys of record, Ms. Kellman and Sarah Kuntsler, you can send them to me and I will overnight the letters. I must have them by early morning, PST on the 14th so I can get letters to New York by the 15th. Whatever way they come to me I will do my best to ensure that they remain as anonymous as possible, including following whatever instructions that you give me to the best of my ability. I will handle all letters with “attorney/client” confidence and submit only that portion of the communication that is necessary for the judge to review it. That means, for example, printing out an email as opposed to forwarding it (and its metadata), or downloading a document from jabber and printing it. More instructions for Anonymous authors can be found below.
My contact information is:
CERTIFIED CRIMINAL LAW SPECIALIST
CALIFORNIA BAR BOARD OF LEGAL SPECIALIZATION
LAW OFFICES OF JAY LEIDERMAN
5740 RALSTON STREET SUITE #300
VENTURA, CALIFORNIA 93003
TEL: (805) 654 0200 ext. 24
FAX: (805) 654 0280
My jabber is: firstname.lastname@example.org
TEMPLATE FOR LETTERS OF SUPPORT FOR JEREMY HAMMOND
Jeremy Hammond’s sentencing hearing is set for Friday, November 15 at 10am at the Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York. We are collecting letters of support on his behalf. Please submit your letter by October 15, 2013 so that it can be included in our submission to the Court. Please do not send your letter directly to the Court – it will not be read. Below is a suggested template for support letters.
Honorable Loretta A. Preska
Southern District of New York
GREETING: Dear Judge Preska:
BODY OF LETTER: Briefly discuss yourself – who you are, your position in work or your role in the community. If you are not personally acquainted with Jeremy, tell the Judge why you are interested in his case. State that you are aware that Jeremy has pled guilty to a violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Tell the Judge why you believe he should be treated with compassion.
If you know Jeremy personally, and can offer some personal observations, you will want to mention this in your letter. It would be helpful to include:
· Jeremy’s character, compassion, integrity, accomplishments, interests, relationships, interaction with and treatment of other people, and your personal and/or professional relationship with him.
· If there are specific anecdotes that will help the reader develop a better picture of Jeremy, we encourage you to share those. It is a good idea to include a brief description of you: your occupation, activities in which you might be involved and any other points which will establish your identity and your ability to advise the court about Jeremy.
If you would like to address the disparate treatment of Jeremy’s co-defendants, or put his case in the context of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (“CFAA”), you may want to mention some of the following points:
· Jeremy’s co-defendants in Ireland and in the United Kingdom were given treatment that is disparate, those who are already convicted will not spend more than 16 months in prison, some have already been released
· The disproportionate sentences associated with the CFAA, or that the protection the CFAA affords to corporations is greater than those it affords to individuals, who may be subjected to surveillance by private corporations such as Stratfor. (For more information on the CFAA, please visit the website of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, https://www.eff.org/issues/cfaa)
Whether you know Jeremy or not, you may want to mention that he had no financial gain from his actions, which he undertook as politically-motivated acts of civil disobedience. Do not try to argue that Jeremy is not guilty or was unfairly convicted. You are asking the Judge for leniency.
Since this is not an effort to mislead or create a false impression, you are encouraged to write an honest, straightforward word portrait of Jeremy. Do not hesitate to write from the heart, and/or emphasize anything you feel is important. One of the goals of your letter is to enable the reader to see Jeremy through your eyes.
It is best to write in plain, everyday, conversational language, as if you were speaking to the reader. If possible, your letter should be typewritten, and, if appropriate, on business stationary, and addressed to me. I will deliver it to the parties that will be reading it.
If you are anonymous and wish to remain anonymous, please give enough identifying information about you to allow the reader to understand who it is that you are, without giving too much information. For example, if you use a Twitter handle, you may use that as your identification. You can identify simply as a member of a particular group. Please do not fail to write a letter because you do not to give your full name and/or other identifying information to the government. We can work with whatever limitations there are.
Sign the letter and include your return address if you are willing and able to do so. Completed letters can be (1) faxed to 347-402-2014, (2) scanned and emailed to sarah at kunstlerlaw dot net, or (3) mailed to: The Law Office of Susan G. Kellman; 25 Eighth Avenue; Brooklyn, New York 11217
If you have any questions, please call 718-783-8200 or email sarah at kunstlerlaw dot net. You can also contact me, my contact information is above, my email is email@example.com. Please remember that Sarah Kuntsler and Susan Kellman are Jeremy’s attorneys of record. I am simply a member of his “legal team” and am not acting in an official capacity. Ms. Kuntsler and Ms. Kellman have final authority in this case.
Original instructions from freejeremy.net: http://freejeremy.net/giant-banner/join-us-in-asking-for-leniency-in-jeremys-sentencing/
Let’s work together and #FreeHammond #FreeJeremy
Thank you so much for your assistance in this very important matter. Your letter will make your voice heard on the is matter and may very well make the difference in this sentencing hearing.
THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. We know how to put a proper price upon goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated.
Thomas Paine, The American Crisis, Winter 1776. It is as appropriate now as it was at Valley Forge.
It has been long enough
Let’s bring Jeremy home