Amidst heightened nuclear tension between NATO and Russia in Europe, U.S. peace activist John LaForge entered a German prison on January 10, 2023 to serve jail time there for protests against U.S. nuclear weapons stockpiled at Germany’s Büchel Air Force Base, 80 miles southeast of Cologne. LaForge entered JVA Billwerder in Hamburg as the first American ever imprisoned for a nuclear weapons protest in Germany.
In the appeal, LaForge argues that both the District Court in Cochem and the Regional Court in Koblenz erred by refusing to consider his defense of “crime prevention,” thereby violating his right to present a defense.
Before entering prison, LaForge said: “U.S. and German Air Force plans and preparations, currently ongoing, to use the nuclear weapons stationed here in Germany are a criminal conspiracy to commit massacres with radiation and firestorms. The court authorities in this case have prosecuted the wrong suspects.”