Poland's Worker Defense Committee said today that authorities in Radom, 50 miles south of here, had ruled the city by terror and lawlessness since worker riots there last summer.
The 20-member committee said in a statement that police had threatened workers, lawyers had been jostled and observers had been beaten up inside Radom's court building. Radom saw the worst of the violence that erupted on June 25 when the government announced higher food prices. The decision was later reversed, but after the Communist Party headquarters in Radom was burned, stores looted and 70 policemen injured.
Today's statement adds to earlier protests from the unofficial Workers Committee and from the Catholic Church following the June riots. The Polish government has been struggling to keep the debates channeled into economic issues and away from political questions.
Dissident sources said the courthouse incidents would not prevent the members from mo [WORD ILLEGIBLE] future trials, but that the committee would send a dozen observers instead of one.
Committee members claim to be subject to harassment including police searches of their homes and anonymous, threatening telephone calls at all hours of the day and night.
None of the members had been arrested, but some have been detained by police for several hours of interrogation, dissident sources said.
The statement today called for a parliamentary commission inquiry and asked Polish authorities to exclude Radom prosecutors from handling investigation procedures.
It said that committee members Miroslaw Chojecki had been beaten up in the court building last week when he attended hearings on charges against workers.
The statement said Chojecki had been beaten up three times by a dozen unknown assailants, but when he called on police in the court for protection, he was told they were too busy.