Court orders FBI to turn over evidence in Judi Bari car bombing case
In an order dated March 31, 2012 and released today, Claudia Wilken, United States District Judge of the Northern District of California, affirmed a March 21, 2011 Order by Magistrate Judge James Larson directing the United States, through the FBI, to turn over evidence in the 1990 car bomb assassination attempt of Judi Bari in Oakland, California to a third party forensic laboratory for independent testing.
“This is a historic and momentous development,” said Ben Rosenfeld, attorney for plaintiff Darryl Cherney, Judi Bari’s co-organizer in the campaign to preserve California’s ancient redwoods, who was also injured when the bomb went off. Cherney went to court in 2010 to prevent the FBI from destroying the evidence, which includes a mostly intact explosive device built by the same hands as the car bomb, a cardboard sign, and latent fingerprints.
The FBI never subjected this evidence to basic forensic examination. Its lawyers contacted Cherney’s lawyers in 2010 announcing plans to destroy the evidence. In 2002 an Oakland federal jury found three FBI agents and three Oakland police officers liable for violating Bari and Cherney’s First and Fourth Amendment rights in trying to frame them by falsely accusing them of transporting the bomb that nearly killed them. The FBI never looked elsewhere.
Cherney alone has continued to pursue the bomber(s). With co-Director Mary Liz Thompson, he just released a new documentary entitled "Who Bombed Judi Bari?"
The evidence, hitherto sealed away in an FBI locker, may finally yield an answer to that question.
A review of the movie in the L.A. Times
Story in the L.A. Times on the court order
Labels: Judi Bari