Occupy protesters won't get the People's books back, but they will get $230,000 - Macleans.ca

Occupy protesters won’t get the People’s books back, but they will get $230,000

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Adrees Latif/Reuters

The group of protesters that started the Occupy Wall Street movement by camping out in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park have reached a settlement in an ongoing court case over books police confiscated.

The books, which Occupy protesters called the “People’s Library” were taken as part of a raid where police cleared campers out of the park in November 2011. Many of the 5,500 books were destroyed. Police also destroyed media equipment in the raid.

“Our court case against New York City’s various officials and agencies is over!,” the People’s Library wrote on its website Tuesday. “The city has settled with us.”

In the agreement New York City and Brookfield Properties, the owner of Zuccotti Park, will pay $230,000 to settle a lawsuit filed in 2012, reports The Associated Press. The money will go to pay both legal fees and to cover the cost of the property destroyed in the raid.

“Our clients are pleased,” Normal Siegel, the lawyer who represented Occupy Wall Street, told the Village Voice. “We had asked for damages of $47,000 for the books and the computers, and we got $47,000. More important — we would not have settled without this — is the language in the settlement. This was not just about money, it was about constitutional rights and the destruction of books.”

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