The long arm of the law nabs another AR fugitive (registration required, scroll down) in the person of Peter Daniel Young:
Peter Daniel Young, an animal rights activist who has been a fugitive since 1997 for alleged crimes committed in Wisconsin, was arrested in San Jose while allegedly shoplifting Monday night. The San Francisco office of the FBI confirmed Wednesday that Young is in FBI custody. Two San Jose police officers spotted Young as he allegedly tried to steal CDs off a shelf at a Starbucks coffee shop at Alameda and West Julian. "He tried to give them a fake ID,'' said FBI spokesperson LaRae Quy. "When they fingerprinted him, they realized he was wanted by the FBI.'' In October 1997, three Wisconsin fur farms were raided and mink were released. In 1998, a federal grand jury indicted Young and another man, Justin Samuel, for Hobbs Act violations and two counts of Animal Enterprise Terrorism. Samuel was arrested in Belgium and extradited to the United States, while Young's whereabouts had been unknown.
Here's a little more on Mr. Young, from the Fur Commission's website, which provides a picture of him (scroll down).
PETER DANIEL YOUNG - ANIMAL RIGHTS TERRORIST
On the weekend of Oct. 24, 1997, three Wisconsin fur farms were raided, causing more than $200,000 in damages. The raids were consistent with the methods promoted by the Animal Liberation Front (ALF). Witnesses reported seeing a red Geo Metro bearing a Washington State license plate. Authorities located and stopped the vehicle. The occupants of the vehicle were Justin C. Samuel and Peter Daniel Young. The occupants were released and a search warrant was later obtained and executed. In the vehicle, sheriff deputies recovered tools, ALF communications and a "hit list" of various fur farms located throughout the US.
On Sept. 16, 1998, a federal grand jury indicted Samuel and Young for Hobbs Act violations and two counts of Animal Enterprise Terrorism. Samuel was arrested in Belgium and extradited to the US. The current whereabouts of Young are unknown."
It's sad when a young person commits himself to a course of action that can never be undone, and in the process makes himself a fugitive. For ever after, he must fear being caught and brought to justice. And if he's not actually apprehended, the constant worry must be extraordinarily taxing: will the cops show up? When will it happen?
Peace of mind becomes a treasured thing of the past, a distant memory never to be realized again.
Like Tre Arrow, Mr. Young got himself busted for a petty crime, and appears to be poised to suffer the consequences of his prior indiscretion. How low the mighty can fall . . . from noble ideologue to 2-bit criminal . . .
Of course, the problem with being on the lam is that you must live a flawless life, never making an error that will invite comparisons of you with fugitives in the system.
A word to the wise for would be terrorists, however hot their ideological fervor burns: Don't.
But our story is not done . . . Mr. Young's co-conspirator, Justin Samuel, entered into a plea agreement when caught, earning him a place on the Activist Hall of Shame:
Justin Samuel In October 1997, the A.L.F. took credit for raids on five fur farms in Wisconsin and surrounding states. Thousands of mink were released, and it is estimated over one million dollars of damage was caused.
Justin Samuel and Peter Young were pulled over by police in the vicinity of the farms after suspicious fur farmers contacted authorities. A vehicle search allegedly yielded animal rights literature, as well as other “suspicious” items. In September 1998, a federal grand jury indicted the duo on charges of animal enterprise terrorism and unlawful interference with interstate commerce. Both Samuel and Young went underground and nothing was heard from the two until September 4, 1999, when Samuel was arrested in Belgium and eventually extradited to the U.S. to face criminal charges.
Despite an enormous outpouring of support from the activist community, on August 30, 2000, Samuel entered into a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney's office in which he implicated Peter Young (his co-defendant) and promised to "make a full, complete, truthful statement regarding his involvement in violations of federal criminal statutes charged in the original Indictment, as well as the involvement of all other individuals known to him regarding the crimes charged in that Indictment. And the defendant agrees to testify fully and truthfully at any trials or hearings."
Samuel eventually served two years in prison and is now free and living in San Diego, California. Despite his repeated efforts to reintegrate himself into the animal rights movement, most activists and organizations have shunned him as an untrustworthy individual and a snitch.
While bad timing and dumb luck led to the initial indictment of the two, Samuel’s fear and lack of moral fortitude is responsible both for his own prison time and for the likelihood that Peter Young (if apprehended) may be found guilty and sentenced to a lengthy imprisonment. Like so many others under police pressure, Samuel clearly fell for the oldest tricks in the book of law enforcement: To this day, he claims he did not tell his inquisitors anything they did not already know. Unfortunately, it is not Justin who will pay the price for his fears, but Peter Young-- and any other activists Justin chooses to name to protect himself.
And then this, a desperate plea emailed from the good folks at NoCompromise to elicit support for Mr. Young:
We've just received word that on March 21st Peter Young was captured and is currently being held in San Jose, California. For those of you unfamiliar with his case, Peter has been a "fugitive from justice" since 1998 after being indicted on charges of violating the "Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act"--stemming from a series of 1997 mink liberations in Wisconsin.
Peter desperately needs our support at this crucial time. Peter has been isolated from friends, family, and the movement since his disappearance years ago. Now is the time to act!
The circumstances surrounding his recent arrest are unknown, but he faces several serious charges as a captured "fugitive."
Please take 5 minutes RIGHT NOW to sit down and write Peter a letter. He needs to know that there's a world of activists out here waiting to support him. Please refrain from going into too much personal detail in correspondence and refrain from writing anything that the feds might try to use against him. We have yet to communicate with Peter so there are many uncertainties at this time; keep this in mind.
Mr. Young has himself a problem: he can listen to the well-wishers who hope he'll keep mum, and remove any incentive for leniency. In that case, Mr. Young could cool his heels in the pokey while warming his soul with the knowledge that he's martyring himself to The Cause.
Or, he can spill whatever beans he has, and hope that the government will reward him for it. That wouldn't be very popular with those at NoCompromise, where he'd most certainly earn a place on the organization's Hall of Shame list. (In my opinion, avoiding the list isn't much of an incentive to not cooperate . . . but what do I know?)
So — the issue may well boil down to this: will Mr. Young wish to trade several years of his young life behind bars for his cause, or not?
I suspect "not." I suspect he'll flip.
But only time will tell, and, frankly, the fact that he's been caught satisfies me enough.
UPDATE: There's much more on Mr. Young and his apprehension here.