Anthony Bottom, aka Jalil Muntaqim, has been incarcerated since 1971 for his involvement with the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army. A victim of the FBI’s illegal COINTELPROgram, he has been behind bars for 44 years and is currently in his sixties. Jalil maintains an exemplary prison record, and is the co-founder of the Jericho Amnesty Movement working to free all political prisoners and prisoners of war. Jalil—a great grandfather, brother, son, and friend—is nearing his ninth parole hearing in September 2016
( here is the letter that those of us who sign the petition are supporting)
To: Tina M. Stanford, NYS Chairwoman of Parole
Release Anthony Bottom (Jalil Muntaqim) #77-A-4283 on Parole in June 2016
During the 1960’s and 1970’s, Anthony Bottom was a free man, closely involved in the nation-wide struggles for racial equality and social justice. He was involved in the Black Panther Party, struggling alongside thousands of other people who felt that their communities were under attack due to repeated police brutality and killing of unarmed citizens.
The FBI and numerous police departments have since apologized for the massive illegal campaign against social movements that left dozens dead and hundreds behind bars. However, the victims of these campaigns are still incarcerated, torn away from their families and communities years later. Jalil is now in his sixties—any longer incarceration will do nothing to restore justice. Even the son of one of the victims—Waverly Jones—has expressed his strong support for Jalil’s release. He too understands that a 44 year sentence is both unjust and unnecessary.
Jalil is a man who refused to allow his 44 years of incarceration to embitter him, and has instead used it as a catalyst to deepen his commitment to humanity and self-betterment.
Jalil has been awarded for quelling prison riots twice, started an African studies educational program for prison inmates, attained two college degrees, and published two volumes of poetry. He has been a mentor and leader to youth both inside and outside prison walls, and is himself a father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, and son.
We ask you to release Anthony Jalil Bottom as a first step in healing the wounds of America’s violent and racist past. We ask that he be returned to his community of family, friends, supporters, and loved ones. We welcome him back.