In this BBC interview, former Defending Dissent Foundation Director, Frank Wilkinson, speaks about the FBI’s decades-long surveillance of him, and the campaign they undertook to disrupt and discredit him. A lifelong political activist, Wilkinson caught the eye of the FBI in 1952 when he defended a major public housing project, Elysian Park Heights, for the Chávez Ravine section of Los Angeles. Instead, Dodger Stadium eventually occupied the site. Wilkinson, called before the House Un-American Activities Committee, cited the First Amendment as his reason for not answering: the Committee had no right to ask. He was sentenced to a year in jail for contempt of Congress, a sentence upheld by the Supreme Court.
In 1984, his FBI file, totalling 132,000 pages was released under the Freedom of Information Act. At the time, it was the largest known file