On trial for draft evasion

Transcripts available in the following languages:

Before our trial, they had a trial of the 63 resisters. During that time, I, when the boys heard the judge address them as you Jap boys, he says oh, haven’t got any chance with this judge. Which was true, they, he found them guilty, and sentenced three years in a federal penitentiary. And uh, during that trial they had a whole bunch of newsmen there, biggest trial in Wyoming history. Biggest draft trial in U.S. history!

So uh the newsmen were fairly, very supportive of the resisters. In fact, uh this was in the Wyoming Evening newspaper quoted one newsman as saying “If I were treated like the evacuees, I’d be damned if I would serve in the army.” So, we heard about all this news so when it came to our trial we thought we’d have a better, fairer shake with the jury trial. So we opted for a jury trial. But the result was the same, they found us guilty and sent us, four of us, to four years in a penitentiary, at Leavenworth. And sent us three of them to two years. Two years was in concurrent uh serving the original three year sentence. And then the uh, Japanese translator, the non-citizen, he was given two years.

Date: May 9, 2006
Location: California, US
Interviewer: Lisa Itagaki
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

draft resisters fair play committee resistance World War II

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