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Miami FTAA Riots

Miami Dade, FL: (Oct-03-07) Over twenty protesters brought a lawsuit against the city of Miami, naming the police and other authorities as defendants, following the brutal 2003 Free Trade Area of the Americas riots in downtown Miami. Sources claimed that when trade ministers from throughout the hemisphere gathered at the InterContinental Hotel for the FTAA summit, hundreds of demonstrators outside were injured, and about 230 were arrested. The city spent $23 million to control the situation. Miami Police Chief John Timoney was in charge of the city's security plan for the event and was roundly criticized by residents, activists, and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for being heavy-handed with crowd-control tactics. Officers from agencies across Florida donned riot gear to contend with the crowd and physically pushed protesters out of downtown. Cops used percussion grenades, rubber bullets, and tear gas. The ACLU filed the suit on behalf of four protesters.

In a settlement reached, the city will pay $160,000 and the county will shell out about $300,000 to resolve allegations. City officials stated that it is by far the biggest settlement reached in response to the event attended by more than 10,000 people. [MIAMI NEW TIMES: FTAA RIOTS]

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Published on Oct-4-07


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