Monday, September 19, 2011

Papist Hal Turner Acquitted

called for Roman Catholic revolt against government officials
outed as FBI informant
White Supremacist, Holocaust Denier, Called for Killing Jewish people

From The New York Times:

HARTFORD — A blogger was acquitted on Friday of charges that he had threatened Connecticut officials when he urged readers to “take up arms” and suggested that government leaders “obey the Constitution or die.”

After deliberating less than three hours, a Hartford jury found the blogger, Harold Turner, of North Bergen, N.J., not guilty of felony inciting injury to people and misdemeanor threatening.

Mr. Turner, who will be returned to prison to complete a nearly three-year sentence in a separate case for threatening judges in Illinois, hugged family members after the verdict was announced.

“I am very pleased,” he said, as he was led away by correction officers.

Mr. Turner, who is known as Hal and who has also hosted politically charged webcasts and radio talk shows, represented himself and argued that no one had been hurt and that there was no evidence that his words had led to any violence. He also cited his First Amendment right to free speech.

Mr. Turner wrote a blog post in June 2009 in response to state legislation, withdrawn three months earlier, that would have given lay people of Roman Catholic churches more control over parish finances. Mr. Turner, 49, believed the legislation flew in the face of the constitutional doctrine of separation of church and state.

He suggested that Catholics “take up arms and put down this tyranny by force,” said government leaders should “obey the Constitution or die” and said he would post officials’ home addresses. He also wrote that if authorities tried to stop his cause, “I suspect we have enough bullets to put them down too.”

Two state officials testified that they had received unrelated threats before because of their jobs, but they said Mr. Turner’s comments went above and beyond those previous remarks.

During his closing argument, Mr. Turner said, “Ladies and gentlemen, this case is a fraud.”

“I said some nasty things about politicians, and they’re trying to use the power of the state to throw me in jail,” he said. “These are the kinds of things we heard about in the former Soviet Union.”

But the prosecutor, Thomas Garcia, said that Mr. Turner’s targets had testified that they were truly concerned about their safety and that Mr. Turner’s words were meant to incite violence.

The federal case for which Mr. Turner is serving a prison sentence stemmed from his online criticism of a 2009 ruling in which a federal appeals court dismissed lawsuits challenging handgun bans in Chicago and Oak Park, Ill. Mr. Turner wrote, “These judges must die.”


Here's text of the original blog article- am unsure if this is the entire article, as blogger has taken it down:


This is a direct government assault upon the Catholic Church, in absolute violation of the First Amendment to the Constitution for the United States.

It is very clear to us at the Turner Radio Network [TRN] that the state of Connecticut has become tyrannical and abusive. It is actively and aggressively attempting to directly interfere with the internal governance of a church and the free exercise of religion. It is retaliating against citizens for exercising their right to petition for redress of grievances. This is tyranny and it must be put down.

While filing a lawsuit is quaint and the "decent" way to handle things, we at TRN believe that being decent to a group of tyrannical scumbags is the wrong approach. It's too soft.

Thankfully, the Founding Fathers gave us the tools necessary to resolve tyranny: The Second Amendment.

TRN advocates Catholics in Connecticut take up arms and put down this tyranny by force. To that end, THIS WEDNESDAY NIGHT ON "THE HAL TURNER SHOW" we will be releasing the home addresses of the Senator and Assemblyman who introduced SB1098 as well as the home address of Thomas K. Jones from the OSE.

After all, if they are so proud of what they're doing, they shouldn't mind if everyone knows where they live.

It is our intent to foment direct action against these individuals personally. These beastly government officials should be made an example of as a warning to others in government: Obey the Constitution or die.

If any state attorney, police department or court thinks they're going to get uppity with us about this; I suspect we have enough bullets to put them down too.

The state pushed; it is about to get pushed back. Elected and other government officials sometimes need to be put in their place. They serve; they do not rule. They need to learn their place or be put there by force.


Hal Turner is not only a Roman Catholic Church supremacist, but also a White supremacist and anti Jewish people- something notably omitted by this reporting by The New York Times- though nonetheless reported by wikipedia:

Harold Charles "Hal" Turner (born March 15, 1962) is an American white nationalist, Holocaust denier[2] and blogger from North Bergen, New Jersey. In August 2010, he was convicted for making threats against three federal judges with the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Prior to Turner's arrest, his radio program, The Hal Turner Show, was a webcast from his home once a week.

Early life

Turner was born in Jersey City and raised in Ridgefield Park. He served for ten months in the United States Marine Corps and received an honorable discharge. Prior to working in radio, Turner worked as a driver and a salesman.[3]

Early career

Identifying himself as "Hal from North Bergen", Turner became notable in American conservative circles as a frequent caller to and supporter of WABC radio talk show hosts Bob Grant and Sean Hannity.[4] Turner parlayed this fame into a role as the northern New Jersey coordinator for Patrick J. Buchanan's 1992 presidential campaign. He went on to serve as campaign manager for Libertarian Party candidate Murray Sabrin in New Jersey in the 1990s, including a 1997 gubernatorial campaign.[5]

Turner claims he established a friendship with Sean Hannity, on whose program he was a frequent presence.[4] However, when confronted by the New Black Panther Party's Malik Zulu Shabazz in 2008 about his association with Turner (in light of Hannity's scrutiny of Barack Obama's association with Jeremiah Wright), Hannity at first denied knowing Turner, then said he had banned Turner from his radio program. Turner subsequently posted this response on his website: "I was quite disappointed when Sean Hannity at first tried to say he didn't know me. In fact, Sean does know me and we were quite friendly a few years ago."[6][7]

Turner became a talk radio host, joining fellow regular callers Frank from Queens and John from Staten Island to start the program The Right Perspective. Turner left the program in 2002, citing artistic differences. In 2002, Turner became a solo host, purchasing a time slot on shortwave radio station WBCQ, over which he broadcast for approximately four years. On WBCQ on March 22, 2004 he left the show "after harshly criticizing his supporters, listeners, and WBCQ."[8] The show lacked financial support[9] the owner of the station Allan Weiner was Jewish, and Turner had health problems[10][unreliable source?]. This led to the temporary closure of his website and show.

Activism and assault claims

In the 2000 US congress election, Turner sought, but did not receive, the Republican Party nomination for election to the United States Congress from New Jersey's 13th congressional district, losing to Theresa de Leon.[11][12] Turner has identified himself as the "Chairman of the Republican Party of Hudson County, NJ Corp," a group which has no connection to the official Hudson County Republican Party recognized by the state and national party. According to news reports, Hudson County Republican officials have stated that Turner's party is a "paper corporation with little or no membership".[13]

In response to an October 7, 2005, assault against a white student by a black student at Kingston High School, Turner, working with the white nationalist group National Vanguard, organized a rally which he called a "rally against violence".[14] The case resulted in the perpetrator being indicted as an adult with two felony counts: assault and attempted assault.[15][16] He characterized the rally both as "pro-white" and "against violence".[17] The victim's mother chose not to attend the rally.[17] In response, local residents, including political and religious leaders, organized a number of "Unity Rallies" with a tolerance theme.[18] When the rally occurred on November 19, 2005, Turner and the National Vanguard attracted approximately 50 demonstrators, compared to the 100 counter-demonstrators.[19]

On April 12, 2006, Turner had a physical altercation with Jaime Vazquez, a former Jersey City Deputy Mayor and a member of the Jersey City Council, who was the Jersey City Commissioner of Veterans Affairs at the time. The North Bergen Reporter quoted Turner as saying "(t)he illegal immigrants are breaking the law, and people like me should break the law as well by shooting them down." In response, Vazquez picketed with a sign reading "Hal Turner — shoot me! Racists and bigots like you are cowards."[20] Vazquez suffered a back injury and a fractured wrist. Turner and Vazquez later filed criminal charges against each other. On July 16, 2006 North Bergen Municipal Court Judge Joseph Romano found both men to be equally credible and thus neither criminally liable.[21]

Broadcasting and website issues

In 2002, Turner started broadcasting, but quit the show in July 2008[22] and resumed in April 2009 as Turner Radio Network. In August 2008 his website also closed down, though he retained a blog, it was shut down by his host, Google's Blogger, for violations of terms of service.[23]

Origin of China Eminent Domain Hoax

In February 2009, Turner posted an article to his blog entitled: "FEDS GRANT EMINENT DOMAIN AS COLLATERAL TO CHINA FOR U.S. DEBTS!" claiming that a secret agreement had been made to allow China to physically take U.S. land, in the event of a U.S. default.[24] The story then went viral and was posted across the internet, including most conspiracy and extremist right-wing sites and forums.[25]
Anonymous website raid

Turner claimed that in December 2006 and January 2007 individuals who identified themselves as Anonymous took Turner's website offline, costing him thousands of dollars in bandwidth bills. On January 19, 2007 Turner sued 4chan, eBaum's World, 7chan, and other websites for copyright infringement.[26] On January 22, 2007 he lost his plea for an injunction.[26] In February 2007 4chan responded to the lawsuit.[26] In April 2007, the judge asked the parties to submit information to schedule proceedings.[26] However, Turner failed to respond and mail from the court to Turner was returned as "Undeliverable".[26] The Judge dismissed the case in December of 2007.[26]
FBI Informant

Turner was a paid FBI informant for several years, supplying information about right-wing groups to federal agents.[27] The original allegations that Turner acted as an informant for the FBI surfaced in 2008 after unidentified hackers claimed on Turner's website's forums that they had read email correspondence between him and an FBI agent, apparently his handler.[28] This led to a discussion on a neo-Nazi website on January 10, 2008, in which Turner revealed he was quitting political work, was ending his radio show and that he was separating "from the 'pro-White' movement".[28] The FBI has declined to comment on the matter.[28] The Southern Poverty Law Center[29] and the Anti-Defamation League reported on the emails that "a neo-Nazi Website had posted material reportedly found by the hackers, including alleged exchanges between himself and law enforcement agents which indicated that Turner had been providing information to them."[30]

On July 28, 2009 in a Chicago courtroom, Turner's defense lawyer said that Turner worked as a paid informant for the FBI.[31] In December 2009, The Record published an investigative report on Turner's "complex" relationship with the FBI and Federal Marshalls, noting that all parties broke off contact at several points.[32]
Threats against judges and political figures

Turner has a history of making threats against various public figures.[33] In 2005, Turner publicized the names of three federal court judges who handled lawsuits involving Matt Hale, a white supremacist convicted of soliciting the murder of a federal judge.[34] Turner posted the judges' names and addresses on his Web site.[34][35]

On December 6, 2006, Turner announced on his website:

"We may have to ASSASSINATE some of the people you elect on Nov. 7! This could be your LAST ELECTION CHANCE, to save this Republic... Sorry to have to be so blunt, but the country is in mortal danger from our present government and our liberty is already near dead because of this government. If you are too stupid to turn things around with your vote, there are people out here like me who are willing to turn things around with guns, force and violence. We hope our method does not become necessary."[36]

Since the announcement was made, Turner has had difficulties finding a host for his website. He alleged that his website has been the target of denial of service attacks, and subsequently filed a pro se lawsuit.[37][38][39]

On April 4, 2008, Turner encouraged violence against Lexington, Massachusetts school superintendent Paul Ash for establishing a new curriculum supporting gays and lesbians. On his website, he stated:

"I advocate parents using FORCE AND VIOLENCE against Superintendent Paul B. Ash as a method of defending the health and safety of school children presently being endangered through his politically-correct indoctrination into deadly, disease-ridden sodomite lifestyles."[40]

He went on to provide Ash's personal information, including his address.[40] Fourteen months later, on June 2, 2009, Turner posted on his blog

"Let me be the first to say this plainly: These judges deserve to be killed. Their blood will replenish the tree of liberty. A small price to pay to assure freedom for millions."

The next day Turner posted information on how to find Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook and Judges Richard Posner and William Joseph Bauer.[41]
Arrests, trials and conviction

On June 3, 2009, Turner was arrested in New Jersey and charged with inciting injury to two politicians in Connecticut and a state ethics official.[42][43] The warrant issued was for inciting his website's readers to "take up arms" against the officials.[44] Two weeks later, Turner was re-arrested on June 24, 2009 at his New Jersey home for making threats against the judges of the United States Court of Appeals in Chicago.[45] When he was arrested, FBI officials seized 200 rounds of ammunition as well as three handguns and one shotgun. In federal case, Turner was denied bail.[46][47]

On June 30, 2009, the website for Turner's blog was shut down and replaced with a notice stating that the site has been taken down by Turner's family, directing interested parties to a blog for the Family of Hal Turner, with entries by his mother.[48]

United States v. Turner

Wikisource has original text related to this article:
Government's Sentencing Memorandum: United States of America vs Harold Turner

On July 28, 2009 for United States v. Turner in Chicago, Turner pleaded not guilty to threatening to kill three federal appellate judges there and then sought his release from custody, saying he had been an informant for the FBI.[49] The judge gave Turner 10 days "to produce concrete evidence of Turner's help to the FBI or federal marshals."[49] On August 11, Turner was denied bail again. The judge cited the fact that Turner, from his prison cell, recorded and posted on the internet a telephone conversation that included the names of his arresting FBI agents. The judge said that Turner's act "tells me something about the disposition of Mr. Turner."[50]

He pleaded not guilty, and his lawyer said the defense will use "Turner's background as an FBI informant" and argue that he was "trained by the FBI" as "an agent provocateur" to incite people."[51][52] In late October Turner was freed on $500,000 bond, and was ordered not to use a computer or any device that can access the Internet.[53] His trial started on November 30, 2009 and ended on December 4, 2009, with the defense opting not to call any witnesses.[54] After two hours of deliberation, the jury announced it was deadlocked.[55] Three days later the judge declared a mistrial, and a retrial was set for March 1, 2010.[56] This second trial, overseen by Western District of Louisiana judge Donald Walter, was moved from the Northern District of Illinois to the Eastern District of New York: since the prosecution was to call the three judges to the stand, the defense felt that Turner would not get a fair hearing if the trial was conducted in the same city where the judges worked.[57] A mistrial was declared on March 10.[58]

In August 2010, his third trial began and on August 31, after three days of testimony the jury found Turner guilty.[59][60] On 21 December 2010, he was sentenced to 33 months in prison. Upon completion of his sentence, he will be barred from participating in Internet or satellite radio programming for three years.[60][61] In his sentencing memorandum, U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald made the following comment:

"For years, Turner has engaged in a campaign of intimidation against public officials and private citizens alike. Even Turner’s arrest in this case failed to deter him. Turner continued his tactics by using intimidation against a key witness in the government’s case against him. All the while, Turner has displayed defiance and no regret for his actions. Turner remains utterly incapable of acknowledging the genuine fear experienced by his innumerable victims – that is, except when he is the victim of a perceived threat. Turner has committed a serious crime, engaged in witness intimidation, lied repeatedly under oath, and has shown no regret whatsoever." [62]

After his conviction Turner was incarcerated in the Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn[63], and was moved to his current location in May 2011 at Federal Correctional Complex, Terre Haute.[64] In May, he sent letters to The Jersey Journal saying he is one of 38 people housed in Communication Management Unit in the prison Terre Haute with terrorists, like John Walker Lindh, and fears for his life once fellow prisoners find out he was a government informant.[65][66] According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Turner has a projected release date of October 3, 2012.[1] Since his incarceration in 2010, Turner declared bankruptcy and his wife filed for divorce.[67]

In August 2011, Turner filed an appeal for his conviction, which claims the government "failed to substantiate the charge" and asked to be released pending the appeal.[68]

Connecticut v. Turner

In July 2009 the Connecticut case was handed to a division of the state court that handles more serious matters.[69] In early February 2011, Turner appeared in a Hartford court for the Connecticut v. Turner pre-trial hearing on three counts of inciting injuries to persons.[70] The three felony counts Turner is facing each carry one to 10 years in prison.[71]

In late February 2011, the federal government reported that e-mails "show it appears Turner plans to pursue judicial and law-enforcement officials after he’s released from prison." On February 2, Turner wrote "when I get out, I’m gonna go after some ‘problems’ and take care of them in a manner that will be horrific."[72]

On March 25, 2011, Turner appeared in Hartford asking the court to be allowed to change his attorney, telling the judge, "I have no confidence in his ability to defend me."[73] The judge reluctantly allowed him to change his private attorney for a public defender citing Turner's unusually bad year.[73] On April 7th, with a public defender at his side, Turner pled not guilty and the case will go to trial.[74]

In July 2011, Turner's public defender asked for the case to be dismissed saying Turner's statements are free speech and that Connecticut courts don't have jurisdiction because his threats were made in New Jersey.[75] Prosecutor Thomas Garcia responded that Turner himself wrote that his intent behind the writing was to "foment direct action" against the lawmakers "personally."[71]

In September, Turner asked Judge Carl J. Schuman to represent himself after disagreeing with his public defender, John Stawicki, about defense strategy.[76] Judge Schuman agreed, but Stawicki will remain as stand-by counsel.[76] Meanwhile jury selection began.[77]

Hal Turner's profile is once military, continually Roman Catholic, and somewhat politically up-mobile, working for Patrick Buchanan, combined with being an FBI informant and expressively pro serial killer against Jewish and Mexican peoples.

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