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Martha Tranquilli (1973)

Martha Tranquilli (May 1973)

martha tranquilli convicted—
appeal to follow

“When I first went up to register to vote, I had to swear to uphold the Constitution of the United States—and now they won’t let me do it.”

—Martha Tranquilli

On May 3, Martha was brought to court by the U.S. Government on two counts of perjury…knowingly signing and mailing 1040 forms for 1970 and 1971 on which she claimed exemptions she knew she was not allowed.

This case is the first involving the 1040 Form rather than the W-4 Form…Martha had claimed 7 groups as exemptions on her 1970 and 1971 1040 Forms…[they] were AFSC, WILPF, ACLU, WRL and WTR. The prosecution’s case consisted in proving that Martha knew these initials were not “people” but “groups”…

There are certain serious questions as to why Martha was never given a chance to defend herself in tax court, and why she was never given the customary opportunity to pay any owed monies…

Martha decided to take the witness stand on her own behalf…She pleaded with the jury, not necessarily to find her innocent, but to see and hear the crys [sic] of the innocent people over the world whom we are oppressing by economic and military means.

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