Modal close

Hi there,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. This week Democracy Now! went to the U.S.-Mexico border, where we talked to people on the front lines of the immigration crisis. If on the ground coverage like this is important to you, please donate today. Right now every donation we receive will be tripled by a generous supporter. This means if you give $8 today, Democracy Now! will get $24 to support coverage like this year-round. Please do your part. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else. Thank you so much!
-Amy Goodman

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Donate

Art or Terrorism? Buffalo Professor Faces 20 Yrs For Biotech Art

Listen
Media Options
Listen

Related

Buffalo art professor Steve Kurtz and Pittsburgh professor Robert Ferrell face 20 years in prison on mail and wire fraud charges after the FBI found harmless bacteria used in art displays in Kurtz’s apartment.

On May 11, Buffalo art professor Steve Kurtz phoned 911 after waking up to find his wife of 20 years, Hope, not breathing. The police who arrived at his house noticed materials used in Kutz’s artwork on genetic modification and called the FBI.

Kurtz is a member of the highly-regarded Critical Arts Ensemble, a group whose exhibits include utilizing DNA, bacteria, and other forms of molecular life to spark public debate on scientific issues such as genetically modified food.

The FBI came in, cordoned off half the block and took Kurtz into custody. They confiscated his computer, his notebooks, his art supplies, the cat and his wife’s body.

The authorities searched the house for two days before announcing that there was no public health risk and that no toxic material had been found. Kurtz was allowed to return home and his wife’s death was attributed to heart failure.

But the story didn’t end there. A month later, a grand jury was convened to investigate whether Kurtz had violated anti-bioterrorism laws. Now, Kurtz and a Pittsburgh professor Robert Ferrell each face up to 20 years in prison on indictments of mail and wire fraud.

Related Story

Video squareStoryAug 21, 2019Meet Alvaro Enciso, the Artist Placing Crosses in Sonoran Desert to Memorialize Migrant Deaths
The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Up arrowTop