- KGovernor, U.S. Virgin Islands
Free the Virgin Islands 3 - Help end 44-years of U.S. Political Imprisonment in the Isles
The "Virgin Islands 3" have actually been held in imprison for over 44-years, 29-years by the U.S. government, and the past 15-years by its puppet colonial regimes over the Virgin Islands. In 2000-01, the U.S. government dropped the pretense of detaining them based on the purported "sentences" it imposed on them back in 1972, when it retired their federal prisoner numbers and terminated its custody of them. In so doing their sentences were terminated and by law, were free men since they had no other sentences anywhere else, but the U.S. did not free them. Instead, it "transferred" them to the custody of the colonial government for indefinite and illegal detention.
This past December, the three petitioned the U.S. District Court of the Virgin Islands, the same court that sent them to prison, to end their illegal detention by the colonial government. Instead of the judges of that court obeying the law in processing their petitions, they conspired with the colonial jailers to round the men up and put them into maximum-security isolation. This action occurred on December 31, the same day by law that they should have been released. They remain in the "hole," while the court has still not processed their petitions in violation of domestic and international law.
The issue is a simple and irrefutable one, these men have been detained for the past 15-years without even the pretense of sentences. Their detention is illegal, and revealing that indeed their imprisonment has always been purely political. And actually, no court order should even be required to set these men free, all the colonial governor has to do is to comply with domestic and international law on Human Rights. For this reason we ask people to sign the petition to Governor Kenneth Mapp to do his duty to his people, stop violating the law, and set these men free now.
- Governor, U.S. Virgin Islands
My name is Kwasi Seitu, the chief advocate for the Institute for Tsunamic Justice, based here in Washington, D.C. and the legal adviser and advocate for Mr. Meril Smith, Mr. Beaumont Gereau, and Mr. Warren Ballantine. I am writing with regard to the fact that for the last 15-years your government has been financed and subjected these men to false imprisonment and illegal detention. To make matters worse, it appears as a result of their petitioning the court recently on this issue, they were rounded up and all placed in punitive maximum-security isolation on December 31, 2015, where they remain. At the same time, the District Court, under Ms. Wilma A. Lewis, has withheld the processing of those petitions, all of which are serious violations of both U.S. domestic law and the International Declaration of Human Rights. Interestingly, by legal calculations of process, December 31st was the day they should have been released by that court or yourself. You do not need a court order to stop an illegal act or practice, that is your sworn duty.
Let me bring to your attention, in event for some unexplainable and inexcusable reason it has escaped your awareness, that these men have not had a sentence since 2000-01. When the United States Bureau of Prisons stripped these men of the federal prisoner numbers and terminated its custody of them, that terminated or retired their sentences. They were tried, convicted, sentenced, and imprisoned by the United States entirely. They were never made subject to trial and conviction by any court of your land, the “U.S. District Court” is not a court of your land, but that of the U.S. Congress. There was no legal basis for the “transfer” of their detention to your government, the courts have made this clear, once the U.S. gives up jurisdiction to a prisoner, that prisoner's federal sentence ends. This means that in 2001-01 as they were released by the FBOP, they should have been given “gate money,” and plane ticket home, and released. However, instead by some means less than legitimate, this government began to finance the illegal detention of Mr. Smith and Mr. Gereau in Virginia for nine-years, while illegally holding Mr. Ballantine at the Golden Grove prison.
I do not mean to sound threatening, but in no way is this situation acceptable or excusable, and your failure to promptly to rectify it only intensify the criminal and civil repercussions and consequences already implicated here. I am expecting the release of these men within 48-hours after receipt of this letter, and that they be kept absolutely safe until then, and not through punitive detention. You will also have to provide them with substantive preliminary funds for the their care upon their release, including housing if needed. By law you must comply, failure to do so carries serious consequences. I am including a copy of this letter to the persons listed below and published it as part of our public petitioning campaign to raise its awareness of the utter lawlessness that exists here in “America's Paradise” for its natural inhabitants at the hands of a colonial government. I appreciate your time, consideration, and look forward to your intelligent response.
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