Jason Kirkpatrick, Director of Spied Upon, will speak with support team members of Grand Jury Resister, Jerry Koch, about tactics of repression, associations, and resistance.
“I began making Spied Upon the day I found out my good friend Mark Kennedy was actually an undercover cop, who had targeted me over a number of years. While governments claim spying is needed to stop violent criminals, a large degree of it is actually done against non-violent political and economic targets. One example has been people concerned about climate change, targeted not only by uncontrolled secret police units but also by former highly trained police spies now working for private security firms and large energy corporations. The complexity of bothinternational secret police and corporate spying going on today is like a crazed Kafkaesque multi-layered puzzle. While filming Spied Upon I’ve met other targets of undercover operations who tell shocking stories that need to be heard. Each has added a crucial piece to the ever clearer picture of modern-day spying that this full-length documentary is fastening together.” – Director Jason Kirkpatrick
“In May I wrote about my friend Jerry Koch going to jail. A well-loved New York anarchist, Jerry, 24, was not charged with a crime, but was taken into federal custody for refusing to testify in front of a grand jury — those black boxes of the federal prosecutorial system with a grim history of harassing activists.
As far as his lawyers have gleaned, Jerry was never the target of the grand jury investigation (with which, based on political ethics, he has twice refused to cooperate). For his silence, or, as the justice system put it, “contempt,” he faced prison time of up to 18 months — the time limit for a given grand jury before charges must either be brought or the investigation dropped.” Natasha Lennard