Thursday, January 22, 2009

Don't Stop Now

"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."--George Orwell

* Thank You *

Thank you to all supporters for taking action on Mr. Peltier's behalf. Our work isn't done. As you know, Mr. Peltier was assaulted at USP-Canaan last week. Your continuing involvement is greatly appreciated and urgently needed.

* Updates *

On 1/20, Peltier attorney Micheal Kuzma described Leonard's injuries during an interview yesterday on American Indian Airwaves. According to a letter received from Peltier (thus far, neither the attorneys or Leonard's family members have been able to speak directly with Leonard), the attack occurred on January 13. Leonard believes he may have a concussion and he's suffering from headaches that are a direct result of the beating. His middle finger on his left hand may be broken. He has a large bump near his right wrist. He is experiencing pain in the area of his right rib cage and chest (which is bruised). Listen to the interview (last 20 minutes of the program):

Peltier spoke to a family member on 1/22. He was jumped by young gang members. He's been put in solitary, he says, and won't be released again into the general population. He was told by the FBI that he was the victim in the attack, the proof of this being a videotape. Assured that he'd enjoy all his privileges upon his transfer to USP-Canaan, he's now been told he'll be allowed only one phone call a month. Two attorneys have attempted to get inside the prison to meet with Leonard, but their requests for legal visits have been denied. If Peltier is officially the victim in this occurrence, why the punitive measures? Solitary confinement, even if for protection, is not humane--in particular, over the long run. Peltier is clearly being isolated from friends and family and even his attorneys. Why?

Update: 24 Jan 2009. Sheila Dugan, Esq., an attorney residing in Pennsylvania and working with Peltier attorney Michael Kuzma was able to visit Leonard this morning for four hours. She saw his bruises. Leonard's chest still hurts. Leonard was not taken to a hospital to be examined after he was beaten by two other inmates.

Leonard is in solitary confinement. As crazy as it sounds, he doesn't have a comb so he can't comb his hair.

Also, this was a no-contact visit. A glass barrier separated Leonard and Ms. Dugan. She had to talk to him via phone for the entire four hours.
The letter below to the Bureau of Prisons was written today by Michael Kuzma, Esq., attorney for Leonard Peltier. Please consider writing letters of concern to the BOP as well!

FEDERAL EXPRESS #8628 9879 0796
January 24, 2009
Mr. Harley G. Lappin, Director
Bureau of Prisons
320 First Street, N. W.
Washington, D. C. 20534
Re: Leonard Peltier, #89637-132

Dear Director Lappin:

I represent Mr. Leonard Peltier, #89637-132, who is currently incarcerated at USP Canaan.

Mr. Peltier was recently transferred to USP Canaan from USP Lewisburg. It is my understanding that Mr. Peltier was brutally attacked on or about January 13, 2009. Mr. Peltier suffered a possible concussion, the middle finger on his left hand may be broken or is badly injured, he has a large bump near his right wrist, the right side of his rib cage and chest are in a pain, the right side of his chest is bruised as is his left knee, and he is now having headaches, which Mr. Peltier believes are a direct result of the January 13, 2009 beating.

It is clear that Mr. Peltier is in grave danger at USP Canaan. By letters dated November 29, 2008 and December 15, 2008, I requested that Mr. Peltier be transferred to the Turtle Mountain reservation or, in the alternative, he be sent to Sandstone FCI or Oxford FCI. As I noted in my letter of December 15, 2008, on August 20, 2008 Mr. Peltier sought to be transferred to Sandstone FCI or Oxford FCI. A copy of the “Inmate Request to Staff” form dated August 20, 2008 that Mr. Peltier submitted to Case Manager Rothermel is once again enclosed for your information.

Please advise me of what steps, if any, you have taken to ensure Mr. Peltier’s safety. More specifically, I would like to know what you have done to make sure that he is not attacked again in the future. Also, has Mr. Peltier received appropriate medical treatment for his injuries? If not, it is imperative that he sees health care professionals without any further delay so that his injuries may be properly treated.

I look forward to hearing from you shortly.

Thank you.

Yours truly,

Michael Kuzma, Esq.


cc: Mr. Henry J. Sadowski, Regional Counsel

* Don't Stop Now *

Please continue your contacts to demand that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) ensure the safety of Leonard Peltier. In all your contacts with entities within the BOP, please make certain to reference Leonard's registration number: Leonard Peltier #89637-132. Let the BOP know we will hold them accountable for Leonard's wellbeing.

Warden Ronnie R. Holt, Warden
U.S. Penitentiary
3057 Easton Turnpike
Waymart, PA 18472
Phone: 570-488-8000
Fax: 570-488-8130
E-mail address:

D. Scott Dodrill, Director
Northeast Regional Office
Federal Bureau of Prisons
2nd & Chesnut Streets., 7th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Phone: 215-521-7301

Harley G. Lappin, Director
Bureau of Prisons
U.S. Department of Justice
320 First Street, NW, Room 654
Washington, DC 20534
Phone: 202-307-3250
Fax: 202-514-6878

Under the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Leonard has rights.

Under the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Leonard has rights. The U.S. isn't a signatory of this Declaration. However, most of the rest of the world believe the rights recognized under this Declaration "constitute the MINIMUM standards for the survival,
dignity and well-being of the indigenous peoples of the world".

Under the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, Leonard has rights.

Under the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War--because, as we know, the Indian Wars are not over--Leonard has rights.

Under the U.S. Constitution, Leonard Peltier has rights.

Sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution, Obama has a responsibility to investigate the treatment of Leonard Peltier #89637-132 and to provide relief. Contact President Obama:

The Honorable Barack H. Obama
President, United States of America
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Comments: 202-456-1111
Fax: 202-456-2461

Also write to your senators and your representative in Congress. See to identify and locate your Members of Congress. Also consider sending a video message. See for directions.

Write to the print and electronic media. Find you local media outlets at Letters to editors also can be made easy through free online services such as In a few clicks your letter will be on its way to the editor of your choice:

Write also to the following organizations. Ask for their continuing advocacy on Leonard's behalf:

The Honorable Navanethem Pillay
High Commissioner for Human Rights Palais des Nations United Nations
Geneva 10

Secretariat of the Working Group on Indigenous Populations
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Palais des Nations
United Nations
Geneva 10

The Honorable Prof. S. James Anaya
Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of Indigenous
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Palais des Nations
United Nations
Geneva 10

Working Group on Arbitrary Detention
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Palais des Nations
United Nations
Geneva 10

The Honorable Irene Khan
Secretary General, Amnesty International
International Secretariat
1 Easton Street
London WC1X 0DW

The Honorable Larry Cox
Executive Director, Amnesty International-USA
5 Penn Plaza - 14th Floor
New York, NY 10001

The Honorable Kenneth Roth
Executive Director, Human Rights Watch
350 Fifth Avenue
34th Floor
New York, NY 10118

"Never cease in the fight for peace, justice, and equality for all people. Be persistent in all that you do and don't allow anyone to sway you from your conscience." -- Leonard Peltier


Time to set him free... Because it's the RIGHT thing to do.

Friends of Peltier

No comments: