FBI investigators with nebulous intentions have attempted to question anti-tar sands activists in several states, the Canadian Press reported over the weekend.
While the dozen or so protesters who have been contacted hail from different organizations, they have one thing in common: mutual participation in so-called “megaload protests”—intermittent highway blockades set up the last few years to complicate the enormous, football-field-sized shipments of processing equipment up to Canadian tar sands mining operations.
“It’s actually pretty spooky to have the FBI show up at your door, ask one question and leave. I think they were there to put me on notice that I was being watched.”
—Herb Goodwin, eco-activist
Larry Hildes, a lawyer working with the protesters, said the phone calls and visits have been happening the last few months in the northwestern states of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.
“They appear to be interested in actions around the tarsands and the Keystone XL pipeline,” Hildes told the Canadian Press. “It’s always the same line: ‘We’re not doing criminal investigations, you’re not accused of any crime. But we’re trying to learn more about the movement’.”
Journalist Alexander Reid Ross first detailed the FBI probe last month for the Defending Dissent Foundation. He wrote:
“It’s actually pretty spooky to have the FBI show up at your door, ask one question and leave,” Goodwin told the Spokesman-Review. “I think they were more interested in megaloads than in Deep Green Resistance. I think they were there to put me on notice that I was being watched.”
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