Skip to content or view screen version webmaster sentenced to one year in jail

Anarchobabe | 06.08.2003 23:02 | Indymedia | Repression | Technology | World

"If I go to jail, then I will go to jail not based on my actions, but based on what I think" - Sherman Austin.

The shut down of Raise The Fist website was first reported on LA Indymedia and San Fransisco Indymedia when the heavily armed FBI raided the home of the webmaster in February 2002.

Now, on August 4th 2003, the court ruled one year in prison, exceeding everybodys expectation. Sherman took a plea bargain because he feared his case was eligible for a terrorism enhancement, which could have added 20 years to his sentence. The plea deal had called for him to serve four months. more info.

An Audio report is available on Radio4all.

In his own words, Austin says,
On Jan 24, 2002 , my home was surrounded and raided by approximately 25 heavily armed FBI and Secret Service agents in one of the governments first attempts to exercise the new US Patriot Act. I was interrogated for several hours while they ransacked my room and they seized a network of computers which I used to run my web site They also seized protest signs, and political literature. Their excuse was a protest guide (which I didn't author) that was posted to my site which a small portion contained information on explosives. The FBI had been monitoring the site long before this was ever posted, and long before Sept 11. The "explosives information" on my site (again which I didn't author) doesn't compare to what you can find on any other web sites such as,,,,, or the many neo nazi web sites which cover everything from assassinations, explosives, fraud and firearms. has been under extensive government monitoring since 1999, sometimes with over 100 hits from the U.S Department of Defense in a single day. The FBI, police department, NSA and government's from the UK, Canada, Lavtia, Belgium, Egypt, Finland, and Australia monitered the site continuesly. The FBI had intercepted all packets going through the DSL line hosting the site, and have seized additional accounts being used by the site.

For more background information read the article on "What the FBI doesn't want you to see at". The development of the site can also be viewed in the webarchive. Broad discussion were also held on discussion forums such as Slashdot.



Display the following 10 comments

  1. Solidarity! With! — FuckThePolice
  2. Indeed — dh
  4. website back online (it was down yesterday) — ~
  5. Solidarity messages — Zonk
  6. Yes to indeed — Werner
  7. Like a lot of shit that has happened recently... — Thomas J
  8. police state — paul
  9. Solidarity — Zonk
  10. yeah, we are all fucked — justin