You are on page 1of 2

Honorable Loretta A.

Preska Chief Judge Southern District of New York 500 Pearl Street New York, NY 10007

Dear Judge Preska,

October 14, 2013

In June of 1773 Anonymously procured letters were published in the Boston Gazette. Their publication and the whisper campaign that preceded their publication set the countryside aflame. Protests were held as far away as Philadelphia and, back in England, a duel took place over who was responsible for the Anonymous leak. No one died in the initial duel so a second duel was duly scheduled. Before it could take place, Benjamin Franklin, then acting on behalf of Massachusetts in London, stepped forward to admit that he had sent the letters to Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and others in the Massachusetts legislature. Those of us who are heirs to the American Revolution know of these events as the Hutchinson Letters Affair. Thomas Hutchinson, then Governor of the British Province of Massachusetts, was one of the correspondents involved in penning the packet of twenty letters. I would like to submit to the Court that what happened in the Hutchinson Letters Affair might prove instructive as the Court considers the length of sentence it will level for Jeremy Hammond's admitted responsibility in pilfering a large number of electronic letters from Stratfor and passing them along to Wikileaks. My name is Doug Johnson Hatlem. I was born in California, studied at Liberty University in Virginia and Duke Divinity School in North Carolina. Most recently, I spent eight years as a street pastor working with people who are homeless or otherwise marginalized for the Mennonite Central Committee Ontario (MCCO). MCCO placed me to work at Sanctuary, a church, drop-in center, health clinic, and arts collective in the heart of downtown Toronto. Recently, I moved back to the United States as my wife has taken a job at a seminary in Chicago. Much more has been written about me publicly in two embarassingly kind articles in the Toronto Star that describe me as a diligent and conscientious professional with an Old Testament sense of justice that can sometimes boil over. Besides having moved to the city where Jeremy Hammond lived and worked before his arrest, I can identify with him and with his plight for a number of reasons. Most especially, I feel a deep resonance with his various passions for justice and his intolerance for corruption of any sort. Perhaps the British would have been within their then blinkered understanding of justice if they had put Ben Franklin away for a decade to punish him for his treachery in the Hutchinson Letters Affair, but our experience as Americans and, in fact, as citizens all over the world, would certainly be quite different if Ben had been behind bars in the years that followed. Mr. Franklin is said to have stood silently as he was upbraided by the Solicitor General as a dishonorable thief at a Privy Council meeting which, among other items, considered how he ought to be disciplined. Interestingly, Franklin spent no time in jail for his

misdeeds. He was, however, relieved of his position as Postmaster General of the colonies at the Privy Council meeting. While silent at the hearing, Franklin initially defended his publication of the purloined letters precisely on the grounds that their contents intended to influence public policy and were therefore in the public interest. Jeremy Hammond has plead guilty before this Court. As I understand it, however, there is not a shred of a question surrounding Mr. Hammond's intentions. Mr. Hammond, like Franklin, Samuel Adams, and John Hancock before him, firmly believed that his involvement in the Stratfor eLetters Affair was undertaken in the public interest. More to the point, John Hancock, speaking to the conclusion of the Massachusetts legislature, specifically stated that the Hutchinson Letters showed that the Governor was involved with plans to "overthrow the Constitution of this Government, and to introduce arbitrary Power into the Province." Mr. Hammond acted, by all accounts, from similar concerns. Now, it may turn out that Mr. Hammond is wrong about what is happening behind the scenes with private military contractors. Just the same, it could have turned out that Hancock, Franklin, Sam Adams and others were wrong. Or even just unsuccessful. But they weren't. It is worth noting that Franklin never had to give up the Anonymous method or source by which he originally came into possession of the Hutchinson Letters. Fort Meade was then, indeed, no Fort at all and wouldn't become such until 1917. Likewise, the FBI, which didn't exist until 1908. More ironically, among the rights for which the colonies fought against the British were the rights to Freedom of the Press, Speedy Trial, and against Cruel and Unusual Punishment. The British might be said now to have a better grasp of these inalienble rights as Declared three years after the publication of the Hutchinson Letters and cemented thirteen years after that in our Bill of Rights. Jake Davis, Jeremy Hammond's Lulzsec co-conspirator in the UK for instance, has not only already been tried and sentenced, but has actually already served the entirety of his term behind bars. In the name of Franklin, Adams, and Hancock and even more so in the name of a rational and moral application of justice, I ask that the Court sentence Jeremy Hammond to the time he has already served. With all due respect,

Doug Johnson Hatlem