The Real Bell Issue / Re: Bell, etc

Alan alan at
Tue Aug 19 16:42:55 PDT 1997

On Tue, 19 Aug 1997, Tim May wrote:

> There is the testimony of one of his former friends that Bell claimed he
> had stinkbombed a lawyer he didn't like a few years back, apparently using
> the same mercaptin used (it appears) in the recent case. And didn't Alan
> Olsen say on this list that Jim had talked about such stinkbombs? It seems
> reasonable that a jury would believe Bell had ordered mercaptin, had told
> others he had used it in the past, and that an attack on a Portland IRS
> office followed his altercation over taxes with them by a few weeks. Were I
> on the jury, I think I'd think he did it.

Actually it was mentioned to me by a freind who has known Jim for many
years.  (Someone who I know well enough to trust his word on the matter.)
The only incident he mentioned was the one with the lawyer's office, not
the IRS "incident".  

> But, hey, maybe "jury nullification" could get him off.

Only if an AP bot were used. ]:>

> >The charges were fuzzy and minor.  Those sorts of things make them easy for a
> >strong advocate to ridicule in court.  Clearly a waste of the taxpayer's
> >money.  Their nature smells of political prosecution.  Another line of
> >defense.
> No doubt a Gerry Spence could do this, but his court-appointed lawyer was
> most likely oblivious to such tactics, and was anxious to plead him out. As
> we all saw in the McVeigh case, court appointed lawyers really are not
> working for their putative clients.

Of course not.  Look who is paying the bills.

> My bigger fear, and no doubt Jim will someday read this and perhaps take
> umbrage at my comments here, is that this several-month "debriefing" period
> is where the Feds are collecting as much incriminating information against
> some of us as they can, perhaps with an eye toward hitting various of us
> with RICO charges, sedition, etc.

I am certain they can.  But it has become obvious that if they want to get
me on some phoney charge they will be able to do so no matter how I live
or act.  Better to be true to my beliefs that to act like a good little

> (Now _this_ would be a high-risk tactic for the Feds to take, as we who are
> charged might fight back hard, and actually win. Depends on the climate. If
> they link us to supplying strong crypto to various freedom fighters, and to
> money launderers (remember Anguilla), etc., then maybe a jury would
> convict. Not on sedition, perhaps, as this is hard to prove, but on RICO
> charges.)

The reason that I believe you will probably not get the "knock in the
night" is that you have the money and resources to fight them off.  They
are more likely to go after the "soft targets" of the semi-employed ranter
who just happens to step on the wrong toes.

> >He could have been aggressive and fought instead of wimping out.  Lots of
> >people have faced much more serious crimes and won.  It's not like Jim had
> >anything better to do.
> >
> >In such cases, an aggressive show of strength of character is best.  Weakness
> >invites oppression.  A rule that you - Tim - seem to follow in general too.
> Well, Bell was about as extreme and aggressive as one can get...and yet....

On the list maybe, but his real life actions were not as aggresive as
maybe the government would like to claim.  He could have made a much
bigger stink than he did before getting nailed by the IRS.

> If I were to be arrested and held without bail--perhaps because of the
> "arms cache" and "chemicals" the news media would breathlessly report--I
> rather suspect my aggressiveness would fall on deaf ears.

And if they had you in a cell with the implied threat of moving you to a
tougher environment if you did not cooperate, you might cop a plea just to
get the hell out of there.

I am starting to believe that the reason that Jim got as pounded on as he
did was because he did not have the financial resources to fight back.

alan at | Note to AOL users: for a quick shortcut to reply
Alan Olsen            | to my mail, just hit the ctrl, alt and del keys.

More information about the cypherpunks-legacy mailing list