Mark Chalmers managed the controversial uranium mine on September 25, 1988, when 29 power poles were vandalized by saws.

Chalmers' calculations quickly ran the total cost up over $200,000, including materials, labor and increased security. Especially increased security.

The defense quickly charged that Chalmers was possibly padding his numbers, and to this allegation you can only say, so what?

This defense tactic was too coy by half. Someone cut down those poles. And clearly many in the Earth First! movement portrayed themselves as "warriors for Mother Earth." You simply cannot, on the one hand, stomp about the forest, pounding your chest and sniffing your underarms, and then, when the final accounting comes due, claim that you were merely a litterer who'd dropped a few beer cans.

More curious for the jury was the revelation by defense attorneys that the FBI was aware in advance of the assault that happened on September 25, 1988, against Canyon Mine.

Whether the cost of the vandalism was $150,000 or $200,000, the FBI could have warned the owners of Canyon Mine, could have arrested the perpetrators, could have prevented the entire folly.

Instead, the FBI sat back and let Canyon Mine take the full hit.
Gerry Spence pointed out to the jury that at the time of the Canyon Mine sabotage, the FBI had not been able to link Dave Foreman to the conspiracy, and so the vandalism was allowed to play out until the connection could be made down the road.

Last week, everything having to do with the FBI that was presented to the jury ended up tainted.

On Thursday, the prosecution offered a witness, Harry Macey, in an effort to tie Marc Baker to the ski-lift sabotage near Flagstaff.

Macey testified that at a party in July of '89, a party given in celebration of Marc Baker's release on bond, that he, Macey, had been discussing how heavy his exhausted children were to carry down a mountain at the end of a recent hike.

Baker's reply, according to Macey was, "You think that's heavy? You should try carrying an acetylene torch over the top of the San Francisco Peaks."

Three months later, in mid-October, Macey took his information to the FBI, saying he was disgusted by what Baker had said.

Skip Donau, Baker's attorney, wasted little time.
Isn't it true, asked Donau of Macey, that this man you were allegedly disgusted with was hired by you to help build your deck in August, one month after the party?

Yes, it was true.
And isn't it also true that on October 13, the day before you called the FBI, you learned information that made you angry and that hurt you?

Yes, that was also true.
"On October 13, I discovered," said Harry Macey, "that my now ex-wife was having an affair with Marc Baker."
"You did this out of anger and hurt, didn't you?" said Donau.
"Only partially," replied Macey.
What a jury will make of this sort of information, God only knows.
Marc Baker did not blink when Macey fingered him.

The week had begun for the biologist with FBI agents holding up his patented, plywood Air-Bakers in a display that kept the court amused at the antics of the galloping galoot from Central Arizona Project Pole 40-1. By the end of the week, a former friend was tying him to the ski-lift sabotage, and if that wasn't disappointment enough, there was the added public mortification of explaining the accusation by saying.|.|."Please understand, I've been sleeping with my buddy's wife."

By Friday afternoon there was enough pain in the courtroom to obliterate the humor of Tuesday morning. Of the five defendants, only Dave Foreman has the constant support of a spouse. All of the others have endured separation and heartbreak under the stress of the federal indictments.

That is how these things go.
Dr. Baker is a biologist with controversial, environmental dreams. And when these fantasies turned to nightmares, everything went to hell. He broke up with his wife, and now, when he comes home at night, his children are no longer there to hug him. And even that is not the end of it.

One day Dr. Baker's former friend will come to court and point an accusing finger at the biologist.

For better and for worse, in sickness and in health.

To be continued

"It's hard to admit that you lied, isn't it?"

Why did the FBI mount Operation Desert Storm against the hippies of Operation Desert Tie-Dye?

"I don't understand the difference between the truth and the whole truth," replied Special Agent Reincke smugly.

In contrast to the Ninja/
Star Wars regalia of the FBI, the environmentalists were shown to be armed with one, broken, Swiss army knife.

Last week, everything having to do with the FBI that was presented to the jury ended up tainted.

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