January 7, 2014
Forty-three years after the mysterious theft of up to 1,000 documents from an FBI office outside Philadelphia, three former political activists are publicly confessing to the brazen burglary, calling it an act of “resistance” that exposed “massive illegal surveillance and intimidation.”
“We did it … because somebody had to do it,” John Raines, 80, a retired professor of religion at Temple University, said in an interview with NBC News. “In this case, by breaking a law — entering, removing files — we exposed a crime that was going on. … When we are denied the information we need to have to act as citizens, then we have a right to do what we did.”
Raines, his wife, Bonnie, and Keith Forsyth, a former Philadelphia cab driver, said they were part of an eight-member ring of anti-Vietnam War protesters that — while much of the country was gripped by the so-called “Fight of the Century” in New York between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier — broke into the FBI’s Media, Penn., office on March 8, 1971.
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