On July 6, 2003, two Boulder residents found
sophisticated global positioning system (GPS) tracking devices attached to
the bottom of their cars, and then-BW Editor Pamela White says the story
broke national news about federal agents being suspected of monitoring
"A guy came in with a contraption he found
underneath his car, fixed there by magnets," she recalls.
mysterious devices were found on cars belonging to a couple of outspoken
animal rights activists who suggested that they were being tracked by the
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Mike Nicosia, who had participated
in animal-rights protests and had launched a Long Island chapter of The
Coalition to Abolish the Fur Trade, was also an outspoken supporter of the
Animal Liberation Front (ALF), a controversial group that was known for
releasing animals from labs and destroying property of those who exploit
animals. Nicosia told BW that he had been monitored by the government in the
past, from phone taps to plainclothes officers following him.
Nicosia's roommate was an even likelier target for government surveillance.
Rod Coronado, who found devices under both his and his girlfriend's car,
which he often drove, was a member of the Earth First! movement and former
media spokesperson for ALF. He served time for an arson attack at Michigan
State University's mink research facilities, and was the person that Earth
First! activist Judy Bari was going to meet when a bomb under her car seat
exploded and nearly killed her in 1990. (A federal jury later discounted the
FBI's allegation that the bomb belonged to Bari herself.)