Trial date set for Tania Chairez
Chairez opted to go to trial instead of accepting court's offer of fines and community service
April 19, 2012, 11:00 pm·
Wharton sophomore Tania Chairez’s trial date has been set for May 30, the court decided Monday.
Chairez’s lawyer Lloyd Long said, however, the date may change in order to allow Chairez and Bryn Mawr College junior Jessica Hyejin Lee, who was arrested with Chairez on March 14, to face trial on the same day. He believes this will be agreed upon.
Long also believes Chairez will be acquitted of all charges at her trial. “I always strongly believe in the strength of my clients’ cases,” he said.
In the meantime, he said it is appropriate for Chairez to continue living her normal life.
Chairez and Lee were arrested for blocking traffic and disorderly conduct during a DreamActivist Pennsylvania protest. Both are undocumented immigrants. They chose to go to trial rather than accept the court’s offer of the Accelerated Misdemeanor Program, which would have required them to pay court fees and do community service.
Chairez believes going to trial is an extension of her civil disobedience. “I don’t want to take the easy way out to do community service to get my charges expunged. I want to directly challenge the system and showcase how flawed it really is,” she said in an April 5 Daily Pennsylvanian article.
Lee is being represented by Lawrence Krasner, another attorney at Long’s firm.