Three leading members of the Black Riders Liberation Party, General T.A.C.O. (Taking All Capitalists Out) and Comrades Stress and Aryana
Shakur, have been indicted and arrested on charges of a conspiracy to possess automatic weapons and attempted possession of a machine gun, in a b.s. set-up and entrapment case. They are being held on bail of half a million (Aryana) to a million dollars apiece (T.A.C.O. and Stress). Despite the heavy bail and serious charges (the D.A. is alleging the Riders were going to enter and shoot up various LAPD
stations, but has brought no such charges, only using the unsubstantiated allegation as the basis for justifying the raids, undercover cops and surveillance directed at the BRLP), neither the D.A. nor the L.A.P.D. has made any public statements about the case.
This reflects the weak and baseless nature of their case, but also their attempt to disrupt the Party by locking up its leaders, attempting to bury them in prison without arousing a public clamor or base of support for the BRLP. It is vital that we present a strong, community based opposition to these nefarious efforts by the LAPD and District Attorney's office to criminalize Black youth and revolutionary politics.
The D.A. sought and obtained a gang enhancement on the charges, even though the undercover officer testified under cross-examination that the BRLP in fact claimed no territory, bore no identifying gang-style tattoos, and in fact resembled the Black Panther Party! The cop acknowledged under oath that the Black Riders were proud Africans, advocates of Black unity, and avowed communists! This testimony makes clear the political nature of the charges and the whole case.
Although the BRLP have been the targets of police harassment and set-ups for their entire ten-year history, the recent series of busts and high-power raids have taken place in the context of the BRLP popularizing the case of the San Francisco Eight (for Black Panther Party members and associates) at a street level in Los Angeles, as well as leading Black resistance and building Black-Brown unity against the racist Minutemen. Combined with the effectiveness of their "Watch-a-Pig" programs and their peace-making efforts and political education with Bloods and Crips street organization members, these successes brought the BRLP under the cross-hairs of the highly-political repressive apparatus of the LAPD. Based on a LAPD affidavit and warrant, LA and San Bernardino sheriffs raided a home in August out in Highland CA -- the raid, which involved a huge number of deputies as well as federal agents, armored personnel carriers, battering rams, now appears to have been based on the same unsubstantiated allegations of a BRLP "plot" to shoot up LA police stations.
We cannot allow the repressive forces of the state to carry out their plan to lock up the leaders of the BRLP and roll up the party! Come to court for the next appearance of the Black Riders Three on Friday, December 28, 8:30 AM at the Los Angeles Criminal Courts Building, 210 W. Temple Street in downtown Los Angeles. The BRLP also needs additional legal assistance, funds to help with court costs and other defense efforts, and other forms of community support. Another planning meeting will be held shortly, and outreach will be taking place at Kwanza events all next week leading up to the court appearance and beyond. Contact the BRLP at PO Box 8297, Los Angeles CA 90008.