A new charge of sabotage, carrying up to 20 years in prison, has been leveled against the Transform Now Plowshares defendants. In the new indictment, Greg Boertje-Obed, Sister Megan Rice, and Michael Walli face two charges from the original indictment, but the trespass charge has been replaced by the sabotage charge listed as Count I below:
- Count I – Damage to national security defense materials, with a fine and or imprisonment up to 20 years under 18 USC 2155. The prosecution has also added 18 USC 2152 which is harm to, among other things, torpedoes from submarines. That claim carries an additional imprisonment of up to 5 years.
- Count II – Damage to a structure within Y-12, carrying up to 5 or 10 years in prison.
- Count III – Damage in excess of $1000 – up to 10 years in prison.
Greg, Michael, and Sister Megan’s action peaceably pointed out the unlawful production and preparation of nuclear weapons at Y-12. The new charges have not deterred them in their continued call for transformation and common nuclear disarmament. Here is their response to the charges.
Our consciences compelled us to act at Y-12 Oak Ridge nuclear facility because we knew that the nuclear weapons of mass destruction illegally produced there threaten the well-being of our entire planet. The government and Babcock and Wilcox [a contractor that manages the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant] know these weapons can only be used to inflict massive death and injury on people and on our planet.
The Government threatened to charge us with the more serious crime of sabotage if we did not plead guilty. We chose to exercise our constitutional right to a jury trial and refused to bow down to their threats. So the government has added serious new charges which expose us to an additional twenty years in prison for our peacemaking actions.
We remain convinced that making and refurbishing nuclear weapons at Y-12 is both illegal under US and international law and it is also immoral. Ultimately we are required to follow the law of love and our consciences.
Our present activities include daily community prayer, study of the Nuremberg trials, and public education about the existence of illegal nuclear weapons of mass destruction.
We look forward to presenting evidence to the jury of the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth about what goes on at Y-12.