Resisting 50 years jail for Defending Community.. by Miguel Peralta

(sale en castellano más abajo)
Miguel, who prior to his arrest was an anthropology student, is one of the 7 indigenous members of the Community Assembly of Eloxochitlán , a Mazatec community in Oaxaca who were imprisoned. Eloxochitlán is known for putting up a fight against the imposition of the mainstream political parties on their community, and for campaigning to preserve their own governing system.
Miguel was arrested by plain clothes fascists and framed with an alleged charge of attempted homicide during a riot: something him, his family, friends and his community strongly deny. According to Peralta, the police begun arrests in the community following a riot during which the police shot live ammunition at the crowd.
Others arrested on similar charges were released but Miguel was held without trial for 4 years and held 2 long hunger strikes before finally being sentenced to 50 years jail in a confused and irregular show trial.

June 11th, 2019 Statement From Indigenous Anarchist Political Prisoner Miguel Peralta

The text in English and Spanish, comes from the Indigenous anarchist political prisoner Miguel Peralta to mark June 11th: International Day of Solidarity With Long Term Anarchist Prisoners. Miguel is currently appealing his 50-year sentence in the Third Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court of the State of Oaxaca, Mexico.

English translation:

–” The cell where I live is kind of dark. Fragments of light enter from two directions. On one side, there are the shadows of a fence with four vertical bars and four horizontal bars, all of which are not visible. Next to that, another fence can be seen but in the form of blinds, elongated, not very wide.

The other side where the light enters is almost the same, but disfigured. The scarce shadows manage to reflect small figures in the shapes of small squares with different shades. Outside, in the corridor, by the window that has 24 bars covering it, is a wall, recently painted with a blue sign that says: RESTRICTED AREA.

And if you lift up your head and look, behind the wall, there are nine young almond trees, aligned, green almost all year. On more than three occasions they have been pruned, which has limited their growth. If one looks further, behind the almond trees there is an old leafy mango tree. In three years it has only come to bloom once, since the month of January. It has not produced mangos and I do not have the least idea what it needs.

Even further, is a very tall coconut palm tree, approximately 25 meters in height. Its fruits are small, you almost can’t see them. Further in the distance you can look at the stars, the clouds, freedom and a bit of the universe.

Very little separates us, don’t you think? Yet we are far away. You might ask how I can see so much? The place where I am located is on the upper floor of the prison (hahahaha).  continues below …

see also.. For the Freedom of Anarchist Prisoner Miguel Peralta | AMW   For the Freedom of Anarchist Prisoner Miguel Peralta Published January 31, 2019 Below we publish three statements in relation to the case of anarchist political prisoner Miguel Peralta Betanzos: one from his friends and family, one from Miguel himself, and one from his lawyers…..

This time of the year, the heat is unbearable. You sweat at every moment. I try to get air by waving an object, a book or a shirt. Like that the night comes to an end, while I write, trying to remember to dedicate some written lines to the compas that have had long term prison sentences imposed upon them.

I remember when I wrote something last year for June 11th, I still had not been sentenced to 50 years in prison. I interpreted time differently. It was like waiting for a bus to travel. I conceived the final court hearing as the correct place, space and time to take back my freedom. But in that moment, it did not happen. I had a hard time imagining, understanding and feeling how the monotonous days, years, and decades in confinement are endured.

Then I imagined the compas Da Silva and Sebastián and I asked myself, what have they done to not break down, to be so strong, to endure so much humiliation from the system and its jailers, to endure the ups and downs of the day to day, the loss of loved ones and of compas to which they could not say goodbye. It seems that they only clung on to their thoughts, their actions were derived from this, they believed in what was really right. While in confinement, they preserved their human dignity and rejected humiliation.

Mumia for example, has always spread so much energy to so many compas, both inside and outside the prison. He has not allowed anxiety, sadness, injustice and the machine itself to erase the smiles of rage that come from his resistance.

Another idea that I want to share with you all is the implications of taking a political position inside prison. On the outside for example, it is easy to manifest an idea or thought and publish something on social networks. The question, I think, is how do we transform the raw material into action. Trying to be anarchists while being locked up is very difficult. We know beforehand that we will come up against the rules, the authoritarianism, the imposition of certain behaviors. Because we navigate against the current, we are stigmatized in their attempts to align and individualize us at all times.

On the other hand, there are clear warning shots from the judicial system. The legal processes will be made as slow as possible, filled with irregularities and delays. The penitentiary system has its delicate arrogance to fuck up the prisoner’s daily existence in prison. Sometimes, in the experience of isolation, remaining silent can be a strategy, at least for a certain time. We are limited in our capacities to develop ourselves in a personal and human manner. At all times, little by little, we are trying to free ourselves, the body and the spirit, passing through various emotional stages.

We struggle for water, here on the inside of the prison. Water belongs to everyone, but here it is not sufficient, neither to drink nor for other uses. We struggle against the food that they impose on us, and we struggle in our work, to not depend on the boss. We search to collectivize some of the established processes in the prison. We are against the conditional freedom that people have experienced throughout history. As such, we will continue completing and reconstructing ourselves to be free.

Greetings to all the prisoners, to all the imprisoned compas that are in confinement.

Prisoners to the street!

San Juan Bautista, Cuicatlán  ” .


October 2018 press release from the friends and family of the political prisoners of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón

Miguel Peralta is one of the seven political prisoners of the Community Assembly of Eloxochitlán who remain in prison…… Since 2014, the Zepeda Lagunas family, utilizing their economic and political power, have manipulated the legal process of the case 02/2015 taking place in the Mixed District Court of Huautla de Jiménez, Oaxaca. …With this, they have drawn out in multiple ways the “due process”, in addition to causing the forced displacement of more than 20 families from the community.

Our compañero has been in prison for nearly four years, having to endure a legal process plagued with irregularities and violations of local, national and international norms. The legal terms that are clearly stated in these local, national and international norms, have not been respected by the court. As such, to this date, he remains in complete legal uncertainty. His detention has been extended and various rights of his have been violated including the obstruction of an adequate defense, the presumption of innocence and access to prompt and expeditious justice.

It is important to note that, in the criminal case 02/2015, legal decisions have been emitted by the First Criminal Chamber of the Superior Court of Oaxaca, District Judges and also of the same Court of Huautla, through which eight others accused for the same acts were given their freedom. Furthermore, they have canceled more than 18 arrest warrants, stating that the only evidence that exists—that is the testimonies of the 8 witnesses—are generic, contradictory and implausible. It is evidence that lacks probative value, for which the responsibility of our compañeros in the supposed crimes is not fully proven.

Specifically, on September 28th, 2018, nine months after the defense team of Miguel Peralta requested the closing of his case (to force the end of the interrogation of two witnesses, since, for almost three years, they didn’t appear before the court), his final hearing was held. It is important to mention that this legal stage should not take more than two months. However, in spite of the fact that the courts cannot, under any pretext, postpone, delay, omit or deny resolutions, according to article 130 of the Code of Criminal Procedures of Oaxaca, it took almost a year.

In consequence, from that date, the time to dictate a decision began. The hearing was carried out without the presence of Miguel Ángel, since the court clerk Jesús Reynaldo Canseco, in an arbitrary and negligent manner, didn’t do the necessary paperwork to request Miguel’s transfer to the court house from the director of the prison of Cuicatlán, Oaxaca. In this way, his right to be present at his hearing was violated, despite having solicited this since the beginning of his legal process and it being stipulated in the constitution.

Regardless, with the defense team not agreeing to let the hearing be delayed any more, it was carried out. Finally, the judge Juan León Montiel, committed to give a resolution after 15 business days from September 28th, which ends on October 22nd. Thus, Miguel has initiated a hunger strike until the resolution is dictated, and his absolute and immediate freedom is decided.

Therefore, we demand that Judge Juan León Montiel impartially and objectively fulfill his job, that the resolution not be delayed and that Miguel Peralta be freed, so that his health is not further affected. The crimes for which they have maintained him prisoner (as well as the other detainees of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón), are fabricated and do not have any legal substance. They are nothing more than the lies and the ambition of the cacique Zepeda Lagunas family, among them, those who serve as complainants: Elisa Zepeda Lagunas, municipal president and now local representative of MORENA, and her father Manuel Zepeda Cortés, ex-municipal president.

The Zepeda Lagunas cacique family has converted the struggle to maintain internal forms of organization of the community and the respect for self-determination into a legal conflict, snatching freedom away from of our compañeros for nearly four years and maintaining an environment of persecution. Criminal law must not serve as an instrument of social control, to resolve a social conflict that is evident in Eloxochitlán, In the Mazateco community of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón, one does not live with peace, but lives with the imposition of repression, abuse of power and harassment beneath the control of Zepeda Lagunas.

For all this, we DEMAND:

  • Quick resolution and the declaration of freedom for Miguel Ángel Peralta Betanzos!
  • Freedom to the seven prisoners of the Community Assembly of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón: Herminio Monfil, Fernando Gavito, Omar Morales, Miguel Peralta, Jaime Betanzos, Isaías Gallardo and Alfredo Bolaños!
  • End the arrest warrants against members of the Community Assembly!
  • Freedom to Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón, Oaxaca!

Family and friends of the prisoners of Eloxochitlán de Flores Magón, Oaxaca

-If there is no Justice..There will be no Peace-

En Español:

— ” La celda donde habito es un poco oscura. Entran fragmentos de luz en dos direcciones. A un costado, ¿saben? se refleja para variar un poco, sombras de una pequeña reja con cuatro barrotes verticales y los horizontales no se dejan ver, a su lado se visibiliza otra reja pero como en forma de persiana, alargada, poco ancha, del otro costado casi es lo mismo pero desvirtuado, las escasas sombras, logran reflejar pequeñas figuras en formas de cuadritos con matices diferentes y afuera, o sea sobre el pasillo, por la ventana que es de veinticuatro barrotes acomodados de costado se aprecia el muro recién pintado, con un letrero azul que dice: ÁREA RESTRINGIDA.

Y si uno va subiendo la cabeza y la mirada, detrás del muro encontraremos nueve almendros jóvenes, alineados, que casi todo el año se mantienen verdes y que por más de tres ocasiones los han podado y despuntado, eso ha limitado su crecimiento. Si uno sigue insistiendo, atrás de los almendros se observa un árbol de mango, de edad avanzada, muy frondoso, hace tres años que sólo se la pasa floreciendo, a partir del mes de enero y que no ha producido, no tengo la más mínima idea de lo que le hará falta. Más atrás se encuentra una palmera de coco, muy alta, de aproximadamente veinticinco metros de altura, sus frutos son pequeños, casi no se distinguen. Después de todo esto se logran mirar las estrellas, las nubes, la libertad y una pizca del universo.

Muy poco nos separa ¿no creen?, ¡Pero qué alejados estamos! Bueno ustedes se preguntarán ¿cómo es que logra ver tanto? y les respondo, pues la estancia donde me tienen está ubicada en la planta alta (risas).

En estos tiempos hace un calor insoportable, sudas a cada instante, trato de echarme un poco de aire con algún objeto, un libro, una playera. Y así se va acabando la noche. Mientras escribo trato de recordar que en algún momento dediqué unas líneas a compas que les habían impuesto largas condenas y me viene a la memoria que cuando lo hice aún no me sentenciaban a cincuenta años de prisión, asimilaba el tiempo de forma diferente.

Era como estar esperando un transporte para viajar; así concebía a la audiencia final como el lugar, el espacio y el tiempo correcto para arrebatarles mi libertad, pero en ese momento no sucedió y aun así me costó mucho trabajo realizar ese ejercicio, me refiero a mi imaginar, comprender y sentir cómo transcurren los compas los días, los años, las décadas en el encierro y soportar en todo momento la monotonía.

Luego imaginaba a los compas Da Silva y a Sebastián y me pregunto, cómo le habrán hecho para no decaer, para tener tanta fuerza, para soportar tantas humillaciones de parte del sistema y sus carceleros, aguantar los altibajos del día a día, la perdida de seres queridos y de compas de los que no pudieron despedirse, vuelvo y me parece que sólo se aferraron a sus pensamientos, sus acciones de esto se derivaron, creyeron en lo que realmente era justo estando en el encierro, conservaron la dignidad humana y rechazaron la humillación.

Mumia por ejemplo, desde siempre, ha transmitido tanta energía a un chingo de compas, afuera y adentro y que no ha permitido que la ansiedad, la tristeza, la injusticia y la máquina logren borrar las sonrisas de rabia que brotan de su resistencia.

Otra situación que deseo compartirles, es sobre las implicaciones que conlleva asumir una postura desde el aislamiento, afuera por ejemplo, es fácil manifestar alguna idea o pensamiento y publicar algo en las famosas redes sociales, la cuestión pienso, es cómo le hacemos para transformar la materia prima en una acción. Tratar de ser libertario desde el encierro es bien complicado, sabemos de antemano que nos toparemos con reglas, con formas autoritarias, con imposición de conductas, con la estigmatización y pues navegamos contracorriente, porque pretende alinearnos e individualizarnos todo el tiempo.

Por otro lado, nos queda claro, que es un tiro cantado con el sistema jurídico y que los procesos tratarán de llevarlos lo más lento posible, las omisiones jamás faltarán, y bueno el sistema penitenciario cuenta con su delicada arrogancia condimentada para joder todos los días la existencia y la estancia del preso. A veces, en el camino del aislamiento, callar es una estrategia por determinado tiempo, porque estamos limitados a desarrollarnos personal y humanamente, poco a poco vamos intentando liberarnos en todo momento, del cuerpo y del espíritu pasando por varias etapas emocionales.Luchamos por el agua, aquí adentro, que es de todos, pero luego no es suficiente, tanto para beber como para otros usos, por la alimentación que nos imponen y por el trabajo, para no depender del patrón, buscamos colectivizar algunas formas que están establecidas, estamos en contra de la libertad condicional que han vivido los pueblos a través de la historia y así seguimos complementando y reconstruyéndonos para ser libres.

Saludo a todos los presos, a los compas presos que están en el aislamiento

Presos a la calle!

Miguel Peralta

San Juan Bautista, Cuicatlán  ”.

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