To hear San Diego Minutemen leader Jeff Schwilk’s crony and fellow nativist extremist Ray Carney tell it, Schwilk’s alleged defamation in December – for the second time – of a civil rights activist was no case of mistaken identity. In fact, Carney says, he warned Schwilk that a video in which a woman admitted she was a “prostitute” and a “hooker” was not in fact Joanne Yoon, a nemesis of both men. Schwilk sent a mass email with a link to the video anyway, Carney said.
“I researched the video and found that the girl in question was in fact not Yoon and was done by some girl who resides in Canada,” Carney wrote in a letter to Yoon’s attorney in San Diego, Daniel Gilleon. “I notified Jeff of my findings and told him not to use the video … he did not listen to my advise [sic].”
Schwilk did not immediately respond to a Hatewatch request for comment.
He and his organization employ confrontational tactics to show their displeasure with immigrants who gather at day labor sites and with employers who hire them. The SDMM has called immigrants “w-------” and their employers “slavemasters.” Schwilk suggested last year that a federal judge, who ruled in favor of an undocumented immigrant killed by a Border Patrol agent, should be “immediately dragged out, arrested and sent to Gitmo for crimes against our country! Bastard!”
Schwilk allegedly sent an email to about 1,000 people with a link to the YouTube video that has him in hot water, stating that it showed Yoon admitting she was a prostitute. She sued Schwilk, San Diego Minutemen and unnamed others for defamation last week, asking for $1.35 million, plus punitive damages.
Schwilk and Carney have an acrid history with Yoon, who used to monitor SDMM rallies for the American Civil Liberties Union. She sued both men for defamation in 2007 after they circulated photos of her with comments referring to her as “the Korean anorexic ACLU s---.” Carney — who worked for 11 years as a computer expert for White Aryan Resistance, the neo-Nazi hate group led by Tom Metzger, according to radio station KPBS-FM in San Diego — suggested in a mass email to SDMM members that Yoon had a fondness for “Brown Schlong.”
In May 2009, a San Diego County jury ordered Schwilk to pay Yoon — now a high school teacher in Bakersfield — $135,000. Carney didn’t respond to the lawsuit and was a default defendant. Galleon says he obtained a $135,000 judgment against him in a separate court proceeding.
Carney stressed in his letter to Galleon that he had nothing to do with circulating the supposed Yoon video, nor does he want to testify in the case. He is not a defendant in the suit.
“Although I know about the video because I was one of the many who received it, after doing basic research, I knew it was not your client and my involvement went no further besides viewing the video,” he said in the letter to Galleon. “I deleted the video and moved on.”
Galleon says that’s what Schwilk ought to do. “What [Yoon] really wants is for Jeff Schwilk to leave her alone,” he said.