Supporters of a longtime California activist, Carlos Montes, rallied outside a courthouse in Los Angeles Tuesday calling on authorities to drop his prosecution. Montes faces four charges including one for firearms possession that dates back to the 1960s.
A longtime leader in the Chicano, immigrant rights, and antiwar movements, Montes’ arrest in a May 2011 raid followed similar FBI raids on activists in Minnesota, Michigan and Illinois targeting fellow members of a political group called the Anti-War Committee.
“They are attacking me for my activism against the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, but also because of my solidarity work with oppressed people throughout the world — whether they be in Palestine, Colombia or Mexico,” says Montes, who plans to march against NATO this weekend in Chicago. Montes helped organize the Brown Berets and took part in the famous 1968 walkout by high school Chicano students in East Los Angeles to protest academic prejudice and dire school conditions.