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From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Wed Dec 16 2009 (Updated 12/17/09)Eco-prisoner Jeff "Free" Luers Released from Prison
Wed Dec 16 2009 (Updated 12/17/09)Jeff "Free" Luers Released from Prison After Serving 9.5 Years
PORTLAND — Dec 16th, 2009 — Jeff Free Luers, political prisoner and environmental activist, was released from the Columbia River Correctional Institution this morning after serving nine and a half years. Luers was originally sentenced in 2001 to twenty two years and eight months for the politically motivated arson of three SUVs at a car dealership in Eugene, OR. This sentence was deemed grossly disproportionate to the damage sustained by the car dealership and was condemned by legal professionals, human rights groups and activists worldwide. At an appeal hearing in 2007 it was ruled that Luers' original sentence was illegal, and was consequently reduced to ten years.
Luers' release today comes after what Oregon Department of Corrections described as a 'mistake' when they released him early on October 20th this year. After a few short hours of freedom, Luers was taken back into custody in Eugene after the State agency reversed its decision and determined that he did not qualify under the new House Bill 3508 for an additional 10% reduction in sentence. DOC's gross incompetence in this situation, and the emotional toll borne by his family and loved ones, is just one of many examples of the distressing levels of bureaucratic impropriety that Luers has endured during his years behind bars.
Upon his release this morning, Mr. Luers stated, "The last 9 years have been difficult at best. I have witnessed things in prison that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I have endured hardship and loss. Without a doubt, this experience has changed me. What hasn't changed is my commitment to environmental and social justice."
Read more | Free Jeff Luers
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