Eco-terrorist group says it set mill fire

Tuesday, January 9, 2001


GLENDALE, Ore. -- The Earth Liberation Front yesterday claimed responsibility for a fire that destroyed the administrative offices of a wood-products mill last week.

In a statement sent to Craig Rosebraugh, a spokesman for the underground group, the ELF warned that they "hope to see an escalation in tactics against capitalism and industry" in 2001.

The fire last Tuesday caused $400,000 damage. Oregon State Police Lt. Gregg Hastings had said there was evidence the fire was started at a number of different places, and other clues convinced investigators it was intentionally set.

A similar fire broke out Dec. 28, 1998, at the Medford offices of U.S. Forest Industries, which runs a plywood mill in Grants Pass. The ELF also claimed responsibility for that fire, which destroyed the two-story building.

A year ago, ELF claimed responsibility for a Christmas Day fire that destroyed a $1 million Boise Cascade timberlands management center in Monmouth.

In the statement to Rosebraugh, the groups said "Superior Lumber is a typical earth raper contributing to the ecological destruction of the Northwest. What happened to them should shock no one."

The ELF is an international underground organization that uses economic sabotage to stop alleged environmental destruction. During the past three years, damage from acts of eco-vandalism has amounted to millions of dollars. Since December 1997, the ELF and the Animal Liberation Front, have taken responsibility for at least 10 arson attacks.