Seven Years War

Few of us are likely to remember what we were doing in January of 2014, but Roddi certainly does. He took part in a massive anti-fascist action in Wien, where thousands of anti-fascists from several different countries massed to try to shut down a high-level fascist networking event in Wien sponsored by Austria’s notoriously extremist FPÖ party. There are two reasons Roddi will always remember that action: one is the 5cm scar the police left on his face after viciously assaulting him and other anti-fascists gathered at the action.

The other reason is that for seven years the Austrian authorities pursued legal action against Roddi! From 2014-2021 authorities in both Austria and Germany threatened to railroad Roddi, finally cobbling together a laughable cobweb of lies and distortions that they used to charge him in 2021 for the events of 2014!

As you might imagine, trying any case after seven years creates a prosecutorial burden, time-and-memory-wise and as luck would have it, Roddi’s prosecutors were not up to the challenge, failing to convict him on any serious charges. In the end, Roddi left court with a probationary/conditional sentence of just seven months, so as long as he keeps his nose clean into 2022, he will not see the inside of a jail cell.

Why, you might be wondering, would the state insist on pursuing charges they must have known they could not prove in court against an anti-fascist for events that took place seven years ago? We believe that they wanted to make an example out of Roddi and knew that, even if they were unsuccessful in court, they would still have seriously disrupted his life for seven years.

Not to mention saddle him with seven years’ worth of lawyer’s bills! As you can imagine, that adds up to an extraordinary sum, so when Rote Hilfe München put out a call to help pay those bills, the Defence Fund happily responded. If you’d like to help Roddi with those bills directly, you can send a bank transfer here:

Rote Hilfe eV OG München
IBAN: DE61 4306 0967 4007 2383 06
GLS Bank
Keyword: WKR 2014

If you’d like to ensure that the Defence Fund is around and able to help people like Roddi in the furture, you can make a contribution to it here.

Bring Tha Noize!

When this van’s a-rockin’ cops better not come a-knockin’!

Adopting the adage “go big or go home” to “go loud or go home,” anti-fascists in Copenhagen, Denmark turned out for May Day festivities this year with a specially-done up NO ONE IS ILLEGAL sound truck, blasting tunes! They + the van + the tunes managed to occupy the Queen Louis bridge for a spell, which the police did not appreciate!

The lazy cops decided that the easiest person to charge was the driver/owner of the van, which is exactly what they did. The case slowly wound its way through the Danish courts and, in the end, the driver/owner was left with 36,000kr in court costs to pay off. Well, now that bill is paid in full, thanks partially to The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund which stepped in to pay off the remainder of those court costs.

Paul & Scottie Updates!

It’s unlikely that Paul and Scottie know each other or have even heard of each other. Paul is an anti-racist skinhead in Brisbane, Australia; Scottie is a hip-hop MC and Black Lives Matter activist in Los Angeles, USA. But what brings them together here in this update is that they both physically stood up to violent fascists in their communities; got arrested by the police for doing so; and are free today thanks in part to the intervention of The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund.

Paul, fronting his oi! band Permanent Revolution

We didn’t report on Paul’s situation previously (for reasons explained below). Paul is a SHARP skinhead in Brisbane, Australia and the front man for Permanent Revolution. A while back, ​a few of the local SHARPs were having a quiet beer at a local venue ​when a concerned staff member told them that a pack of Proud Boys (yes, they’ve spread down there, too!) were outside. ​The venue had banned Proud Boys and other hate groups and staff had been assaulted by members of the far right in the past. Paul ​and his mates went​out to have a, um, honest and frank discussion with the Piss Boys, which ​ended in Paul being done up on assault charges.

Around that point, the Defence Fund stepped in to make sure Paul could afford a decent lawyer to represent him in court (we didn’t post about at the time because we didn’t want our support to interfere negatively in the outcome of his case). Unfortunately, Paul was forced to plead guilty to some of the assault charges but in his sentencing earlier this month, Paul got off with a community service sentence instead of jail time (and tbh, Paul probably would’ve volunteered to do community service anyways!).

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles:

Scottie Tripin

Scottie Tripn is a well-known and well-respected Black Lives Matter supporter and antifascist activist. On January 6 of this year, MAGA chuds in LA decided to attack people downtown while their friends went to DC to try to overthrow the democratically-elected US government. Scottie was there to help protect the people the chuds were trying to target and in the fracas, one chud fucked around by spraying him with bear mace and found out. Scottie came out of that on top only to have LAPD clowns hit him up with bullshit charges after the fray.

Scottie needed thousands to hire decent defense lawyers and the Defence Fund were among the first to step up and do what we could to make sure that happened. This week, that support & solidarity paid off!

Scottie walks! All charges dropped!

Paul and Scottie are anti-fascists #9 & #10 who’ve avoided a prison sentence this year thanks in part to receiving funds from us to hire good legal counsel. We haven’t kept track but off-hand we could probably point to a dozen others over the years that could say the same thing! What’s the lesson here? Our project of international anti-fascist solidarity keeps anti-fascists in their communities – where they belong – instead of rotting in prison! That’s as good a reason as any for you to make a contribution to the Defence Fund today!

Awesome Alex Update!

Our man Alex in action against hammer-and-knife-wielding, gun-toting nazis.

The black school bus with mesh screens over the windows looked right out of Mad Max: Fury Road as it drove up to counter-protestors who had just successfully confronted fascists at a Unite The Right-style rally in Portland, OR. In it were members of “American Guard” – a nazi bonehead splinter group – and they came well-armed. The first one off the bus pulled a knife and tried to stab the first anti-fascist he saw, but luckily tripped, dropping his knife. A second nazi came right behind him, with a pistol on his belt and a claw hammer in his hand, aiming a blow to the skull of the antifa the first nazi had failed to stab.

That’s when Alex stepped in. Thinking quickly, Alex grabbed the hammer and tore it from the nazi’s hands, then managed to throw it before the nazis panicked and slammed the bus door shut to make their getaway. Alex’s actions likely prevented an antifascist from being bludgeoned to death that day.

But Alex’s fiercest opponents weren’t the armed, violent nazis who had driven into Portland that day to try to murder anti-fascists; they were the police & prosecutors who, while declining to charge any of the nazis, slapped Alex with multiple felony charges, claiming they were justified because Alex “assaulted someone with a hammer” (maybe Andy Ngo was running the prosecution office that day?) For saving someone’s life by intervening to disarm an attacker, Alex was now facing a minimum of five years behind bars and needed a skilled lawyer to defend him. A crowdfunder was soon launched and The International Anti-Fascist Defence Fund, along with many others, pitched in to make sure he could hire the best lawyer possible.

Fast forward two years later and Alex is in a courtroom packed with supporters for his trial, watching as his lawyers COMPLETELY DEMOLISH the District Attorney’s case.
Had the DA’s office contacted any of the nazis that were on the bus? No they had not.
Was the DA able to establish that Alex injured anyone? No. In fact, one of their own witnesses stated that he was “uninjured and unafraid” of Alex after a brief interaction.
Can the prosecutor explain why they are demanding a prison sentence and a $10,000 fine? No.
Will the prosecutor describe the facts of their case to the Judge? No, they defer to Alex’s attorney to do that!
In the end, with the prosecution’s case in shambles, the judge wisely ruled Alex to be guilty of only the mildest of his many charges and decided that no jail and a $1k fine or community services -“whichever (Alex) prefers” to be the appropriate sentence. That might not sound like a complete vindication but it could well be enough for the DA to defer from appealing the case.

Have no doubt that things could have gone very differently and turned out much, much worse for Alex had he not had the funds to hire a competent lawyer. The list of antifascist prisoners is full of people who weren’t as lucky as Alex was in terms of having quality legal representation. We are happy things turned out as well as they did for Alex and that we were able to play a role in them turning out as they did. Just like Yvette Felarca, or two antifa moms in SC, our three friends in Austin, TX, our friends in Corvallis, OR., an antifascist in Lünenberg, Germany, and – just last month- seven antifascists in Lyon, France we were able to help pay for legal defence that kept anti-fascists free and in their communities so they can continue the fight against hate!

As Alex wrote to us after we sent him some help, “I am aware of what a huge gift this is from you. Thank you so much for believing in me. I know there are others out there like me who need help, too. Thank you, truly, for what you’ve done.