Professional MMA fighter and anarchist Jeff Monson faces potential jail time when sentenced this October in connection to a graffiti incident in November 2008.
Anarchist grappler and MMA fighter Jeff Monson could face jail time over an alleged November 2008 graffiti incident on the Capitol Building and an army recruitment centre in Olympia, Washington, USA. Monson, who has used his high-profile to discuss anarchist politics, was arrested initially in January. Authorities claim that the graffiti, which included circle-As, a peace symbol and phrases such as "no poverty" and "no war", cost a ridiculous $19,000 to clean-up.
Monson has used fight press-conferences to criticise the US military presence in Iraq, and has been vocal about his wish to see the state and class society abolished. Monson had been involved with IWW in his home state, and earlier this year, took time out before his fight at Cage Wars in Belfast to talk to local anarchists and fight fans about sport and politics. In previous years Jeff has met with anarchists in Manchester Solidarity Federation and CNT-Vignoles in Paris.
In court on July 29, Monson, currently on a seven-fight winning streak after defeating Jimmy Arbriz last month, pleaded guilty to malicious mischief in the Capitol Building case (which itself carries a maximum penalty of a $20,000 fine and 10 years jail) and entered an ‘Alford plea’ for graffiti at the Lacey armed services recruitment centre. An Alford plea means he maintains he did not commit the graffiti act but acknowledges that enough evidence exists that would convince a jury. Prosecutors are recommending Monson pay a fine of $21,894 in restitution as part of the plea deal, and serve a 90-day jail sentence. Sentencing is scheduled for October 1st.
This article appears in The Leveller issue 2.