Reports from Hancock and Beyond

Hancock 17 Drone War Crimes Resisters Trial to Continue Jan. 23-24

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Contacts:
Judy Bello, Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, Rochester, NY, (585) 733-4058
Mary Anne Grady Flores, Catholic Worker, Ithaca, NY, (607) 280-8797
Ed Kinane, Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, Syracuse, NY (315) 478-4571
Elliott Adams, Past President of Veterans for Peace, Sharon springs, NY (518) 441-2697
Carol Baum, Syracuse Peace Council, Syracuse, NY, (315) 472-5478 (SPC), (315) 383-5738 (cell)

Hancock 17 Drone War Crimes Resisters Trial to Continue Jan. 23-24

The second day of the trial of the Hancock 17 Drone War Crime Resisters was Monday, January 6 and ended at 9 pm. The trial continues Thursday, January 23 and most likely Friday, January 24, starting at 5 pm each day at the Town of Dewitt Court, 5400 Butternut Drive, East Syracuse, NY. The delay is due to trying to meet the needs of the pro se defendants to have back to back days as some are from over 100 miles away.

The prosecution has a few more witnesses to testify. The prosecution case is expected to be completed on Thursday January 23, and the defense case to begin that same evening. The defendants will show that they were not breaking the law, but rather upholding international law.

On Monday, the prosecutor continued his case, calling witnesses from the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department and the Town of Dewitt Police Department. In their cross examination, the pro se defendants questioned prosecution witnesses as to the respectful nature or their interactions. The police personnel agreed that the activists were respectful and non-threatening in their behavior. The defense lawyer brought out the fact that no signage indicated where one might or might not be trespassing and that the gates were closed as soon as the activists stepped forward, so that the Base had in effect blockaded themselves.

The activists are all from the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, a decentralized, grassroots organization that represents diverse peace and justice organizations from different cities. We seek to educate the public and Hancock Air Base personnel about the war crimes perpetrated in Afghanistan with the MQ9 Reaper Drone piloted from Hancock Air National Guard Base just outside Syracuse.

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