Sunday, November 07, 2010

Grand Jury Resister Jordan Halliday Sentenced to 10 months

Infoshop News Nov. 4, 2010

November 3, 2010

Salt Lake City, Utah --- This morning United States District Judge Ted
Stewart sentenced Jordan Halliday to 10 months in federal prison and 3
years probation.

In 2008 Halliday, an animal rights activist in Salt Lake City, was
subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury investigating the animal
rights community of Utah. When Halliday resisted, he was held in civil
contempt of court for nearly 4 months. Upon release he was indicted for
criminal contempt of court for the same refusal. This past July Halliday
admitted to willfully & knowingly violating an order by US District Chief
Judge Tena Campbell.

After Halliday's guilty plea, the Prosecutor applied the sentencing
guidelines for another charge, "obstruction of justice," and an
enhancement for “substantial interference with the function of the
judicial system” which consequently increased the advisory Sentencing
Guideline range for Halliday's charge to 15-21 months. The court declared
that the “obstruction of justice” guideline was with warrant, however
believed the enhancement for “substantial interference with the function
of the judicial system” was not justified. Halliday's Attorney Kent Hart
stated that a guideline range for “failure to appear” was more applicable
to this case. However his argument was struck down.

Currently Halliday's sentence of 10 months amounts to nearly half of each
sentence ultimately given to Alex Hall and William 'BJ' Viehl, against
whom Halliday was brought to testify.

Assistant United States District Attorney John Huber maintains the claim
that he believes Halliday still has insider information regarding unsolved
Animal Liberation Front crimes in Utah. Halliday has maintained the claim
that he has no knowledge of any illegal activity, and in a statement to
the court said “I have always tried to work within the law by lobbying and
attempting to pass legislation for the basic rights I believe all animals

The prosecution however states that a communique concerning a mink release
in Utah was sent to a news organization from an individual who listed
their name as “Jordan”. The government states that this communique was
received before police even knew of the incident. Halliday affirmed that
he never sent a communique and that if one exists, that he now understands
why the government might be going after him. He also stated that “If such
a communique was legitimately sent, I am truly disheartened”.

After 4 months in jail, over a year of excessive pretrial conditions and a
lot of living in legal limbo, Halliday will begin his 10-month sentence in
January 2011, which he has the option to appeal in the interim.

To learn more about Halliday's case peruse

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