via Rose City Antifascists. Aug 14:
Rose City Antifascists expose nazi neighbors and coworkers during Day of Action, Call for Community Responses
On July 31, as promised, Rose City Antifascists delivered a message to white supremacist organizers our state. We tracked down leading Volksfront International activists Casey and Alaina Joy Banyas of Albany, OR at their residence, and also located Volksfront leader Nick Cheshire at his workplace, Morgan Distributing in Portland. In addition, our organization also asked for information from those living near the last known address for Nick Cheshire and wife, Leah Cheshire (née Crandall), in Oregon City. We mailed flyers to about 250 to the neighbors of these neo-Nazi thugs, and also contacted Nick Cheshire’s employers at Morgan Distributing about the presence of a neo-Nazi activist within their company.
Why Volksfront is a Threat to Communities and Workplaces
While allowing time for the landlord of the Banyas couple in Albany as well as Nicholas Cheshire’s employer in Portland to respond following the information revealed on the Day of Action, one of the worst cases of neo-Nazi terrorism in recent years took place in America. In Oak Creek, Wisconsin, Hammerskin Nation member Wage Michael Page murdered six people in his attack on the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin there. While Page himself was not a member of Volksfront International, the organization we concentrated on in our Day of Action, Rose City Antifascists and the media at large have compiled documentation that several links exist between the murderer Page and Volksfront.
Volksfront also has its own extensive history of violence, including the targeting of synagogues, numerous racist street assaults, and even the murder of a homeless man, Mark Randall Townsend, in Tacoma, Washington by the leader of a probationary Volksfront unit and his associates there during 2003. Volksfront furthermore have raised funds for one of the 1988 murderers of Ethiopian immigrant Mulugeta Seraw in Portland, while involving another of these killers in Volksfront circles once he was released from prison. Volksfront has also raised funds for and supported members of The Order/Silent Brotherhood, a racist terrorist group responsible for bank robberies and murder in the 1980s. Given their extensive history of violence plus ties to racist murderers and terrorists, we believe that the presence of Volksfront members in workplaces and communities poses a clear danger to people of color, Jewish people, sexual minorities, and other potential targets for Nazi violence within these settings.
We found these two living at 4215 Cabrillo Pl. SE, Albany, OR 97322.
Casey Banyas has recently been extremely active in Volksfront’s organizing, particularly in Lane and Linn counties near his Albany, OR home. His wife, Alaina Joy Banyas, is involved in Volksfront’s sister organization, the Folkish Women’s Front, and is heavily active in organizing social events for Volksfront, including a 2011 Thanksgiving party which was hosted at the Banyas home. Events of these sort provide recruiting opportunities for the neo-Nazi group, and heighten the danger of violence in the area by bringing together a significant concentration of hardcore racist activists in one location.
It appears that Casey Banyas makes a living for himself tattooing racist symbols on his friends through an unlicensed tattoo shop called “Hooligan Ink” (name may have recently changed to “Anarchy Ink”). Banyas has tattooed Volksfront symbols on many group members as a sign of their dedication to the organization and to white supremacy. Banyas may soon be seeking licenses so as to turn his tattoo venture from an underground operation into a legal business.
Nick Cheshire, who we exposed the first time back in 2009, has been active with Volksfront for quite some time now. We “out-ed” Cheshire before at a previous residence that he shared with Nick Scheel, another Volksfront member with a history of racist violence, including threatening the life of an ex-girlfriend’s infant because the child was not “pure white,” as well as a racially motivated assault with other associates against two people walking through Portland’s Grant Park in 2004. (One of the other racists involved with Scheel in that attack was Sean Andrew Sigley, who also later entered a guilty plea regarding the 2003 desecration of the Congregation Shaarie Torah Cemetery with antisemitic slogans and swastikas.)
Nicholas Cheshire himself is integral to Volksfront’s organizing, especially in Portland, where he works closely alongside the organization’s current regional leader, Justin Ryan Martin. Cheshire and his wife, Leah (active in the Folkish Women’s Front mentioned above) are regular attendees at group events, and we have received information that Cheshire has been putting energy into attempting to recruit new members for Volksfront locally.
Rose City Antifascists are currently seeking information about Cheshire’s current living arrangements. During our Day of Action we contacted the neighbors at Cheshire’s last known address, as well as doing outreach to Cheshire’s place of work regarding their employee’s neo-Nazi activity.
What You Can Do
Rose City Antifascists now ask for community support in following up on the preliminary work done during our Day of Action.
We are hopeful that Morgan Distributing will do the right thing and maintain a safe working environment for the rest of its employees and its customers by relieving Nick Cheshire of his position there. We ask businesses that support Morgan Distributing as well as concerned community members to contact the company at 503.907.3999 and encourage them to put the safety of their employees and customers first. If possible, send our organization an email and let us know how your discussion with Morgan Distributing concerning their neo-Nazi employee Nicholas Cheshire went.
In addition, we ask community members to please encourage the landlords of the Banyas residence, listed as to Moises C. & Elaine S. Moreno
34118 Oakville Rd SW, Albany, OR 97321 to ask their tenants to vacate that home. Mr. Moreno may be reached at his Landscaping business telephone number at (541) 926-3702. As always, when calling, we encourage community members to block their phone numbers with *67 so as to avoid retaliation from Volksfront members.
Finally, if you have further information about Volksfront International or other organized white supremacist activity in our region, please contact Rose City Antifascists. Our voicemail number is (971) 533 7832. You may also email fight_them_back [at] riseup [dot] net.