Elizam Escobar was an artist, painter, poet, and member of the FALN (Armed Forces for National Liberation). He was arrested with 10 other Puerto Rican freedom fighters in a van in Chicago, Illinois on April 4th, 1980. They were all charged with seditious conspiracy.
In this episode, we interview his lawyer, longtime friend and one of the leaders in the campaign to Free All Puerto Rican Political Prisoners, Jan Susler. Jan shares with us the story of the struggle of Elizam and his comrades from their arrest to their liberation in 1999. This episode is the first that explores the legacy of a revolutionary that fought in all fronts for freedom.
Elizam died on January 15th, 2021 after a battle with cancer.
Illustration by José Hernández Díaz.
Seditious conspiracy is a term used to describe crimes under United States law. The statute reads: “If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned no more than twenty years, or both.”