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Legal Arguments
Date Document Description
usa 8/16/13 Ruling on Defendants’ Rule 29 Motion “The defendants renewed their Rule 29 motion for acquittal as to Count One, R. 201, and they also moved for a new trial under
Rule 33, R. 202. For the reasons that follow, the Court denies both motions.”
usa 8/16/13 Trial Transcript, Day Two of Testimony “The second day of testimony in the Transform Now Plowshares trial, May 2013″
usa 8/16/13 Transcript First Day of Trial “First Day of Testimony in Transform Now Plowshares Trial, May 2013″
usa 8/16/13 Response to defendants’ Rule 29 motion for judgment of acquittal “The United States of America, by and through William C. Killian, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, hereby respectfully opposes the defendants’ Rule 29 Motion for Judgment of Acquittal.”
usa 8/16/13 Response to defendants’ Rule 33 motion for new trial “The United States respectfully submits that the defendants have not shown that ‘extraordinary circumstances’ exist or that the evidence preponderates heavily against the verdict; therefore, a new trial is not warranted in this case.”
tnp 7/19/13 Memorandum in support of defendants’ Rule 29 motion for judgment of acquittal “Defendants contend that the United States failed to prove that they had the requisite intent to interfere with the national defense of the United States beyond a reasonable doubt.” 
tnp 7/18/13 Memorandum in support of defendants’ Rule 33 motion for a new trial  “Defendants … move this Court … for a new trial based on the following reasons: (1) the weight of the evidence in this case is clearly against the verdict as the Government failed to prove each element of every count beyond a reasonable doubt; (2) the interests of justice require the granting of a new trial based on the nonviolent and globally important nature of Defendants’ action; and (3) the Government committed several acts of prosecutorial misconduct causing an unfair trial in this case.”
tnp 4/17/13 Bishop Thomas Gumbleton declaration “People of faith and people of ethics must resist evil. We cannot remain silent. We must resist and say no in whatever way we can to nuclear war…”
tnp 4/17/13 Col. Ann Wright declaration “…they made no attempt to steal or destroy any nuclear and/or classified materials or any other U.S. government property, but instead they entered the facility to call attention to their opposition to the construction and use of nuclear weapons.”
tnp 4/17/13 Ira Hefland, MD declaration “The reality is that nothing less than our common survival is at stake.”
tnp 4/17/13 Defendants’ list of witnesses
tnp 4/16/13 Renewed motion to dismiss sabotage charge In light of the govt’s response to the bill of particulars, whose vague language does not provide enough support for the charge.
usa 4/08/13 Response to bill of particulars Elaboration upon the points required by the magistrate in memo & order, 3/26/13.
usdc 3/27/13 Order setting status conference
usa 4/12/13 Objection to Magistrate’s memorandum & order Gov’t objects to magistrate’s requirements for discovery.
tnp 4/12/13 Objection to Magistrate’s memorandum & order TNP objects to denial of defenses, denial of bill of particulars, and denial of discovery.
usdc 3/26/13 Magistrate memorandum & order Unfriendly towards defense: grants gov’t request to exclude defenses, denies over 95% of TNP requests for discovery, and denies much of the bill of particulars.Small requirements made of gov’t for discovery, and also for bill of particulars, to elaborate upon charge of harm to national defense & preparedness.
usa 3/20/13 Intent to offer 404(b) evidence The government intends to offer evidence of defendants’ prior arrests.
tnp 3/25/13 Objection to Magistrate’s report & recommendations Requesting that the US District Court reverse the magistrate’s decision and dismiss the sabotage charge.
usdc 3/11/13 Magistrate report & recommendations Magistrate finds all charges sound, and denies all TNP’s vagueness, selective prosecution, contractors and international law challenges.
usdc 2/07/13 Motions hearing Transcript
tnp 2/07/13 Reciprocal discovery A list of books, papers, documents, data, photographs, etc. intended to be used in the TNP defense.
usa 02/03/13 Reaffirmed Motion to Preclude After the defense submitted Supplemental Opposition to Motion to Exclude Defenses, 1/18/2013, the government still contends it can exclude everything.
usa 01/31/13 Response to TNP Motion to Dismiss the sabotage claim In response to TNP 1/18/2013 filing.
Response to TNP Motion for Bill of Particulars In response to TNP 1/18/2013 filing.
Response to TNP appeal of magistrate recommendations In response to TNP 1/16/2013 filing.
tnp 01/18/13 Motion to Dismiss Sabotage Charge
  • Sabotage charges are punishment in this case for defendants exercising theirConstitutional right to a jury trial;
  • represents wrongful and selective prosecutionin violation of the U.S. Constitution;
  • the Sabotage Act is unconstitutionally vague and overbroad as applied here;
  • the sabotage statute does not apply to defendants in this case;
  • the production, processing, and storage of nuclear weaponsviolates both United States and international law.
Supplemental Opposition to Motion to Exclude Defenses In light of the new charges, the defenses the government wants to exclude and the topics it wants to constrain from courtroom conversation have even more reason to be allowed in. All of the following should be open topics:necessity; international law; Nuremburg

principles; First Amendment protections; the alleged immorality of nuclear weapons; good

motive; religious, moral or political beliefs regarding nuclear weapons; and the United States

government’s policy regarding nuclear weapons.

Motion for Discovery Asking for the government’s evidence relating to the newly brought charge of sabotage.
Motion for Bill of Particulars Asking for the details of how exactly the defendants violated the sabotage act.
Memo in Support of Motion for Bill of Particulars A description of why the sabotage charge is overly broad and needs to be dismissed if it cannot be elaborated upon by the prosecution.
tnp 01/16/13 Appeal of Magistrate Recommendations The defense argues that the illegality of nuclear weapons is an appropriate issue to raise in this case. For the court to claim that this issue may not be raised is “improperly relievingitself of its responsibilities enumerated in the U.S. Constitution.”The defense counters the magistrate’s argument that nuclear weapons are never meant to be used, pointing out that “the warheads and the HEU are produced

and [re]processed to deploy for threat or use with specific ‘effective’ heat, blast and radiation.”Finally, the defense objects to the magistrate’s opinion that the production, processing, and storage of nuclear weapons at Y-12 is legal under international law. They provide a reading of the 1996 ICJ Opinion that supports their opinion that such activity is criminal.

usdc 01/02/13 Ruling on Motion to Dismiss Charges
Magistrate recommends dismissal of TNP Motion to Dismiss Charges, saying that individuals do not have the right to litigate the issue of US nuclear policy.  He says that nuclear weapons are not illegal under US or international law.  The court also incredibly states that nuclear weapons are like junkyard dogs – page 13, footnote 8:

When weapons are possessed to deter others, the precise intent is not to use them. The Court considers the situation to be analogous to the junkyard owner who posts a sign saying “mean dog” inside his junkyard. The purpose of the sign is not to threaten or commit violence. Instead, the junkyard owner posts the sign to deter acts on the part of others so that the dog will not have to bite.

usa 12/05/12 Superseding Indictment

New charges, including sabatoge charge (Count I) opening the possibility for longer sentences:

    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.
usdc 11/20/12 Motions Hearing Transcript
tnp 11/16/12 Memo Responding to Gov’t Motion to Preclude Defenses
Opposing the Government attempt to strip them of all defenses.  It explains that the government is seeking to suppress the truth about:
  • what happens at Y-12;
  • what nuclear weapons do;
  • what US policy is on use of nuclear weapons;
  • and why TNP did what they did.
The Transform Now Plowshares want to tell the jury the truth, the WHOLE truth and nothing but the truth.
usa 11/02/12 Government Motion to Preclude Defendants from Raising Defenses
This is the motion by the government prosecutors asking the judge to prohibit the Transform Now Plowshares from being allowed to provide any evidence or tell the jury anything about:
  • international law;
  • the alleged immorality of nuclear weapons;
  • US policy regarding nuclear weapons; necessity;
  • Nuremberg Principles;
  • or First Amendment protections.
attachment 1 of 2: Mellon Decision The 2002 USDC decision in the case USA v Timothy Mellen, Elizabeth Lentsch, Lena Feldmann and Mary Adams.  That decision stripped those defendants of the right to put on all kinds of evidence.  The 2002 decision was made by the same US Magistrate who is making prelimary decisions in the Transform Now Plowshares case.
attachment 2 of 2: Gump Decision The USDC decision in 2011 stripping defenses from Jean Gump, Elizabeth Lentsch, Bradford Lyttle, Bill Bichsel, David Corcoran, Bonnie Urfer, Carol Gilbert, Ardeth Platte, Jackie Hudson, Paula Rosdatter, Michael Walli, Steve Beggarly and Dennis Duvall.
tnp 11/02/12 Memo Supporting Motion to Dismiss
Memorandum arguing that the charges be dismissed because:
  • nuclear weapons are unlawful and illegal under US law;
  • the continuing threat to use nuclear weapons is a war crime;
  • and the actions taken to expose and symbolically disarm weapons of mass destruction were justified.
Declaration of Francis A. Boyle
In support of the motion to dismiss charges against the Transform Now Plowshares.  Professor Boyle discusses US law of international responsibilities and concludes that:
  • nuclear weapons are illegal;
  • the actions at Y-12 to rehab nuclear weapons are illegal;
  • and the Nuremberg Principles which provide all citizens the privilege of acting to prevent war crimes.
Professor Boyle concludes that the charges against the Transform Now Plowshares must be dismissed.
Declaration of Anabel L. Dwyer
In support of the motion to dismiss charges against the Transform Now Plowshares.  Dwyer describes:
  • the horrors of nuclear weapons;
  • the many ways that nuclear weapons have been condemned internationally;
  • and the facts and law which show what is going on at Y-12 is illegal.
Dwyer concludes by calling for the dismissal of all the charges.
tnp 11/02/12 Motion for Discovery These are some of the consolidated requests filed on behalf of the Transform Now Plowshares which ask the government to provide information.
usa 08/07/12 Indictment Federal criminal indictment of Michael Walli, Sister Megan Rice and Greg Boertje-Obed on three counts: two counts of damage to property in Y-12 and trespassing.  (note 12/01/12: Although the government has threatened to bring additional criminal charges of sabotage and other crimes, these are all the charges at the moment.)

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