NLG Calls on Atty. General Holder to Grant Compassionate Release to Lynne Stewart

September 14th, 2013
NEW YORK–The National Lawyers Guild, and several legal and social justice organizations, today called on Attorney General Eric Holder to direct the Bureau of Prisons to grant compassionate release to Lynne Stewart, whose medical condition continues to deteriorate. Citing reforms to the Bureau of Prison’s (BOP) compassionate release program, which Holder announced to the American Bar Association in San Francisco in August 2013, the letter urges that the process of consideration be expedited, given that compassionate release was previously approved by the warden at the Federal Medical Center at Carswell, where Ms. Stewart is serving her ten-year sentence, and given that her condition clearly falls within the newly-announced standards for compassionate release.

During an August 8 hearing, Judge John Koeltl agreed that Ms. Stewart’s medical condition had seriously deteriorated.  The U.S. Attorney did not refute this assessment. Judge Koeltl noted additionally: “The petitioner has appropriately submitted a renewed petition for compassionate release to the BOP, and the court is prepared to give prompt and sympathetic consideration to any motion by the BOP that seeks compassionate release.”

Groups joining the Guild are the ANSWER Coalition, Brandworkers, New York, NY, Center for Constitutional Rights, Chicago Committee to Defend the Bill of Rights, Communities United Against Police Brutality, Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN, Defending Dissent Foundation, Freedom Socialist Party, Human Rights Defense Center, Lake Worth, FL, Human Rights Research Fund,  Law Office of Lee Phillips, Flagstaff, AZ, Law Office of Toby Hollander, Portland, ME, Marin Interfaith Task Force on the Americas, Larkspur, CA, National Coalition to Protect Civil Freedoms, NJ State Industrial Union Council, Oklahoma Center for Conscience, Oklahoma City, OK, Partnership for Civil Justice Fund, Anti-Racist Action L.A., Jericho Amnesty Movement, Los Angeles Chapter, Radical Women and Urban Justice Center.

To read the full letter to Attorney General Holder, click here.

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