Editor’s Note: Below we publish two communiques following the recent sentencing of anarchist political prisoner Miguel Peralta in Oaxaca, Mexico. First, a communique from his lawyers, pointing out the absurdity of the verdict and sentence, and committing to the ongoing legal struggle for his freedom. Second, we post a short communique from Miguel, digesting the difficult moment and doubling down in his commitment to the struggle for freedom in his community.
Yesterday, October 26th, our compañero Miguel Ángel Peralta was personally notified that the judge Juan León Montiel found him criminally responsible for the crimes of attempted homicide against Elisa Zepeda Lagunas (former municipal president of Eloxochitlán and now local representatives for MORENA in District 04 of Teotitlán, Oaxaca) and her brother Manuel Zepeda Laguna. The judge imposed a penalty of 50 years in prison plus compensation for damages amounting to 150,000 pesos. As a result, Miguel has decided to end his hunger strike which he began on October 19th, to regather his strength and continue into the second stage of the struggle to obtain his freedom.
The criminal proceedings initiated against Miguel, that now have culminated in this infamous and unjust sentence, have been plagued with legal irregularities and inconsistencies since the beginning. All of these irregularities and inconsistencies have been supported and promoted by the Zepeda Lagunas family, caciques and repressors in Eloxochitlán. However, despite that this unjust resolution fills us with rage and indignation, we remain strong and, on our feet, or as we say: on our feet in struggle.
We are grateful for the support and solidarity from all of the compañeros, collectives and human rights organizations, who joined in the demand for the sentencing decision not to be delayed. Likewise, we urge you all to remain attentive to the following actions that will be carried out, to challenge the resolution through legal channels.
Today more than ever, we are convinced of the innocence of Miguel Ángel Peralta Betanzos. We know that we are right, that this rage that we now feel will be what drives and motivates our movement forward to retake his freedom which has been unjustly snatched with lies and legal sophistry.
Freedom for Miguel Ángel Peralta Betanzos!
Freedom for the political prisoners of the Community Assembly of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón, Oaxaca!
Los Otros Abogadoz
Statement from Miguel Following His Sentence
Again, it has been demonstrated that law is on the side of ambition, of power and money. The cynicism of “justice” has stirred up the rage in our hearts to continue in this battle against power. Today the feelings are unraveling, but the reason for freedom sprouts with more pressure from these enraged hearts. We shook the bitter taste left in our mouths by the judge of the Court of Huautla de Jiménez, Juan León Montiel, when he repeatedly expressed that the corrupt are not corrupt and that his 18 years of work in the system proved it. With this ruling, he has only reaffirmed the corruption.
We continue forward, recovering strength, embraced by the essence of freedom. We will not give up until we recuperate harmony in our community, in Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón. We will not give up until our forms of organization are respected, until we tear down the lies that keep us imprisoned and persecuted, until the truth is made clear. Although they try to keep us quiet by maintaining us in prison, we will never capitulate.
From the penitentiary in Cuicatlán, Oaxaca
With all of my rage