On Sunday liberty activists gathered to promote a message of freedom and justice and to raise funds for the Free Ross campaign. The aim was to raise $14,000 USD to pay off the cost of printing the appeal.
Lyn Ulbricht’s invitation message for the Free Ross Campaign is available here. The Free Ross Campaign’s work extends beyond Ross Ulbricht’s case and seeks to shed light on the injustices of the criminal justice system, the drug war and threats to our freedoms.
Speakers featured at the event included Jeffrey Tucker, Roger Ver, Ross’s mother Lyn Ulbricht, and musical performances by singer, songwriter and liberty activist, Tatiana Moroz. You can watch a recap of the final hour here. Clips from the event will be posted soon.
At the conclusion of the Sunday December 4 evening, the fundraising goal was far surpassed thanks to the support of the Bitcoin community, others who donated and Roger Ver who matched donations.
An Interview with Lyn Ulbricht and Tatiana Moroz
I had the privilege of interviewing Ross’s mom, Lyn Ulbricht and friend and supporter of Ross, Tatiana Moroz. Despite how bleak this case seems, both had much hope and were encouraged by how many participated in Sunday’s event to show support to Ross and his family.
Elizabeth McCauley (EM): Can you provide a brief recap of the event?
Tatiana Moroz (TM): This was an 8-hour event filmed at the LaffCast Studio in Media, PA. Here is a list of the final guest lists who did brief presentations: https://freeross.org/free-ross-a-thon-registration/?v=7516fd43adaa
This event also touched upon the larger implications of this case and what this means for US citizens regarding privacy rights, the right to due process and first and fourth amendment protections and more.
Lyn Ulbricht (LU): There were four hosts – Master of Ceremonies Terry Brock; Tatiana Moroz; Jim Babb and myself. We were joined by an amazing array of brilliant speakers, each of whom had their own take on the implications of the case and other related issues. Tatiana sang beautifully as always. The event also provided Ross, me and our family the opportunity to express our gratitude for everyone’s support, not only of the event but of our three year effort to free Ross.
It was a lively, very interesting online conference, with a wide variety of speakers with expertise from many areas. Subjects they covered included liberty, privacy, legal issues, bitcoin and cryptocurrency, the drug war, and the criminal justice system. Speakers addressed the impact and wider implications that Ross’s case will have on society and what it means to imprison a peaceful person in prison for life.
EM: What was the most meaningful aspect of the event?
TM: I think Ross’s letter that he wrote to the attendees was very meaningful. It touched upon the unquenchable desire for freedom that is in our DNA. Through this event, people from all over the world were brought together by the idea of justice and freedom and the desire to set things right.
LU: For me, of course the generous financial support is key and allows us to pay the $14,000 bill and have funds left over to pursue justice for Ross going forward. I’m still pinching myself and Ross was so uplifted by the news. However, it was also so encouraging to have so many talented and accomplished people come together and step up in solidarity with Ross. This includes all the great speakers, the dedicated team behind the scenes, everyone who volunteered and helped spread the word, and of course all those who so generously gave donations, both large and small. It has been a long, hard road and this means so much.
LU: We raised $23,500 from people all over the world. Donations, in many currencies, were small, large and in between — and all of them help. People also bought items and services generously donated by speakers and others, some of which are still available. Then, towards the end of the night, Roger Ver, announced that he would match donations. I have gotten to know Roger and admire him greatly. He is a true freedom fighter who is committed to liberty.
EM:What message would you like to share with our readers? How can our readers get further involved and help?
TM: I encourage your readers to educate themselves on the facts of the case. There is much more to the story than what people may have heard from the mainstream media. The decisions made will set dangerous precedents that will ripple through the justice system and affects us all. A lot of detailed information can be found on FreeRoss.org.
EM: Mrs. Ulbricht, can you share a message Ross would like his supporters to know?
LU: There is much more at stake in this case than one man or one website. Ross is at the tip of the spear right now, but the rest of us are not far behind. Precedent is being set that will impact us all. Our supporters are essential to our efforts. The U.S. government is too rich and too powerful for us to fight this alone. It requires a long term, grassroots effort. We need ongoing support in the form of donations, volunteer time and skills. Please donate or contact me through FreeRoss.org to help.
The week before the FreeRoss-A-Thon we learned of proof of evidence tampering and also that someone using the Dread Pirate Roberts (DPR) account logged into the Silk Road forum nearly seven weeks after Ross was arrested. This information was found in a back-up of the Silk Road forum database.
If this back-up had not been saved or discovered; if log-ins made by a DPR after Ross’ arrest were not found, no one would be the wiser. This begs the question: how much more is there? Unfortunately we may never know, as it’s the nature of digital evidence that it’s easily changed, planted or deleted without a trace.
This discovery indicates to me that there is more corruption in the Silk Road case. If anyone has any more information about corruption or tampering, please contact us at FreeRoss.org.
EM: Tatiana, how did you first get involved in advocating for justice for Ross and his family?
TM: I met Lyn Ulbricht, and interviewed her for my show. She is such an impressive person and it gave me an emotional connection to the case. Then I got to know the rest of the family, including Ross, and they’re all great people. Ross himself is such an inspiring and high caliber person, the crime is that he is being wasted in a cage.
EM: What is the next step in court proceedings?
LU: The appeal is being reviewed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and will issue their ruling at some point. When this will be is unknown.
Recent Developments in the Ross Ulbricht Case
Just a week before the Free Ross-A-Thon, there was a new revelation of tampering of evidence.
As Lyn Ulbricht remarked in our interview, Ross’ legal team discovered a login to the Dread Pirate Roberts (DPR) account saved to an obscure folder they had not seen during the initial trial. She noted:
“This discovery indicates to me that there is more corruption in the Silk Road case. If anyone has any more information about corruption or tampering, please contact us at FreeRoss.org.”
It seems that, with each turn, in this case, there is a new revelation of further corruption and tampering of evidence.
The Free Ross-A-Thon demonstrated the wide variety of supporters there are for the Free Ross movement. They include people from the cryptocurrency community to libertarian activists, to former law enforcement to simply individuals who believe in truth and justice. Lyn Ulbricht and her family hope and pray that the Second Circuit appellate court will accept Ross’ appeal for a new trial.
Whether you agree or disagree with Ross Ulbricht’s role in the Silk Road, proof of evidence tampering and corruption by the very officials who were investigating the case is troubling. If we do not have a Justice system in the US that actually is “just,” then we are all at risk.
What are your thoughts on the recent developments in the Ross Ulbricht case? Let your voice be heard and comment below.
Images via FreeRoss.org (Feature Image: Ross at his material science lab at Penn State University, where he had a full scholarship and earned his Masters Degree)