Cutting through the bullshit.

Wednesday, 4 April 2007

Josh Wolf free at last

On 17 February I reported on the incarceration of independent journalist Josh Wolf in California. Here's the BBC report on his release.

US reporter ends record jail term

Josh Wolf from

A reporter in California has been freed after serving 226 days - the longest jail time served in US history for failing to hand over information.

Joshua Wolf, 24, reached a deal with prosecutors by posting online the videotape of a street rally he had refused to give to authorities.

The footage was of violent protests in San Francisco against a G-8 summit.

On 7 February, Wolf passed the 168 days Houston freelancer Vanessa Leggett served in 2001/02 on similar charges.

Wolf had refused a subpoena to hand over the whole of his tape to police.

You will see, as I do, that there is nothing of value in this unpublished footage

A police car was burned and an officer suffered a fractured skull in the violence against the summit which was being held in Scotland at the time.

The video footage Wolf posted on Tuesday did not feature any criminal acts.

Wolf's lawyer Martin Garbus said: "Josh has released the videotape on his website and a copy has been sent to the district attorney. He had refused to identify anyone in the videotape."

On his website, Wolf says he repeatedly offered to allow a judge to view the unpublished footage but was refused.

"Today, you the public have the opportunity to be the judge and I am confident you will see, as I do, that there is nothing of value in this unpublished footage."

Although Californian laws protect journalists from revealing material, prosecutors successfully argued federal money helped pay for the police car, thus making it a federal case

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