Send a message to Attorney General Eric Holder and Bureau of Prisons Director Charles Samuels Jr. that Lynne deserves compassionate release!
Long-time National Lawyers Guild member and activist lawyer Lynne Stewart needs our help and she needs it now! The Federal Bureau of Prisons has denied Lynne Stewart’s application for compassionate release, despite recommendations in favor from the warden at her facility, the Regional Office Director, and vetting of Stewart’s release plans by the Federal Probation Office in New York.
Lynne Stewart’s condition is deteriorating rapidly. Medical treatment to arrest the cancer that is metastasizing in her body has been halted because she is too weak to receive it. She remains in isolation, as her white blood cell count is so low that she is at risk for generalized infection.
For over 30 years, Lynne Stewart devoted her life to the oppressed – a constant advocate for the countless many deprived in the United States of their freedom and their rights. She, herself, was targeted and prosecuted because she defended vigorously her unpopular clients – people the U.S. government sought to execute, disappear, and demonize.
In 2006, Lynne Stewart was sentenced to 28-months. In 2009, she was resentenced to 10 years in federal prison in response to the vindictive dictates of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. In the fall, the Supreme Court will consider her Certiorari petition on the basis of both Lynne’s and her client’s first amendment rights.
Lynne Stewart’s prosecution and continued imprisonment are an attempt to intimidate all attorneys who would represent unpopular clients, particularly those accused of being terrorists. It is a message to those of us in the legal community who understand how important it is that everyone accused of a crime, especially those accused of the most serious crimes, have a capable attorney both able and willing to zealously defend them.