Tim DeChristopher In Isolated Confinement, Activists Report

Activists Say Tim DeChristopher In Isolated Confinement

Environmental activist Tim DeChristopher has been placed in isolated confinement, nonprofit Peaceful Uprising reports.

DeChristopher has been held at Herlong federal prison in the Sierra highlands of northern California since September. A senior officer at the facility could not confirm whether DeChristopher had been moved from the prison's minimum security area to its medium-security Special Housing Unit.

"The only information that I can give you is that he is here," the senior officer said of DeChristopher. "We're not authorized to comment on housing conditions."

Public Information Officer Eloisa Debruler confirmed to HuffPost that DeChristopher will be held at Herlong until April of 2013.

In the past two weeks, he has been allowed out of his 8-by-10-foot cell (which he shares with one other inmate) four times, each time for less than an hour, activists allege.

It's a bit of a strange story. According to Peaceful Uprising, DeChristopher was transferred "because an unidentified congressman had called from Washington D.C., complaining of an email that Tim had sent to a friend."

The group alleges that Tim was inquiring about "the reported business practices of one of his legal fund contributors, threatening to return the money if their values no longer aligned with his own."

DeChristopher's legal defense team will address the issue at a press conference on Thursday afternoon on the steps of the Frank E. Moss Federal Courthouse in Salt Lake City.

Upset by America's energy policy and concerned about climate change, DeChristopher attended a 2008 auction of oil and gas drilling leases and bid on parcels of Utah wildland, driving up the price with no intention to pay. He was convicted of two felonies and sentenced to two years in prison.

His arrest sparked outrage and debate among environmental activists. At the time of his sentencing, environmental leader Bill McKibben wrote, "If you sweated through last week's record heat, if your crops are withering in the southwest's epic drought, if you watched the Mississippi swallow your town -- then Tim DeChristopher acted for you."

According to Peaceful Uprising, DeChristopher was moved from the minimum security camp to Herlong's Special Housing Unit on Friday March 9.

The organization is pushing for DeChristopher's return to the minimum security camp.

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