Three houses in Minneapolis raided, other houses in Michigan, NC, Chicago targeted.
September 24, 2010
On Friday morning, three houses in the Minneapolis area are believed to have been raided by SWAT Teams. While we have few details right now, the F.B.I. appears to be targeting people associated with the Freedom Road Socialist Organization. Besides the raids in Minneapolis, houses in Michigan, North Carolina and Chicago were also targeted.
Raids occurred at 1823 Riverside, above the Hard Times Cafe, and the 2900 block of Park Ave. One other raid is reported, as well. Outside Hard Times Cafe, three unmarked black SUVs (one with an Illinois license plate) sat in the parking area as of 10am, when a lawyer observed 8 FBI agents sitting in the residence examining materials. Otherwise the scene was calm.
Agents had broken in the door there at 7am Friday morning, breaking an aquarium in the process.
The Federal search warrants appear to be focusing on seizing electronic devices, international travel, and alleging “co-conspirators.” They do not authorize arrests.
The search warrant for 1823 Riverside, the residence of activist Mick Kelly, sought information “regarding ability to pay for his own travel” to Palestine and Columbia from 2000 to today. The warrant hyped potential documents indicating any contacts/facilitation with FARC, PFLP, and Hezbollah – what it called “FTOs” or “foreign terrorist organizations”. It mentioned seeking information on the alleged “facilitation of other individuals in the US to travel to Colombia, Palestine and any other foreign location ins upport of foreign terrorist organizations including but not limited to FARC, PFLP and Hezbollah”.
The wording of the warrant appears to indicate the government seeks to create divisions among social justice and international solidarity activists by hyping alleged connections to what they call “foreign terrorist organizations.”
The warrant also sought information on “Kelly’s travel to and from and presence in MN, and other foreign countries [sic] to which Kelly has traveled as part of his work in FRSO [Freedom Road Socialist Organization”, as well as materials related to his finances and the finances of FRSO, and all computer and electronic devices.
The federal warrant was signed by Judge Susan Nelson at 3:30pm yesterday, September 23.