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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: U.S. | Police State and Prisons | Womyn
Lynne Stewart speaks in San Francisco at Socialist-Feminist Conference
Hear Lynne Stewart speak at the annual Radical Women Conference in San Francisco on Octeber 3. She discusses her case, in the context of the need to further challenge some of the criminal justice abuses in the "War on Terror" and work to reverse the overall direction the government is taking the country in, with an emphasis on marxist-based solutions. (57 minutes)
Lynne Stewart's case has been proceeding for over 7 years. She was convicted of a terrorist-related crime stemming from a Reuters press release in the name of her client. She has been convicted, resulting in being disbarred and completely cut off from the legal profession. She claims innocence and that she is targeted for some of the successes in her work.
She says a bright side is having not served significant jail time, due to a favorable post-conviction sentencing hearing. However, the goverment is digging its heals in and appealing her sentence, so she is not free yet. Additionally, she is living with breast cancer, so needs all the support we can give. Through all this, she appeared energetic and high-spirited, her New York wit firmly intact. A short bio and case summary below....
WHY THE CASE OF LYNNE STEWARTSHOULD MATTER TO YOU
On the morning of April 9, 2002 agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation
arrived in the front yard of the Brooklyn home of outspoken attorney, Lynne Stewart to
arrest her. Simultaneously, as they handcuffed her, the FBI invaded her Manhattan office
and searched for almost 12 hours. Photographs of them leaving with boxes of papers and
files were widespread in the media. U.S. Attorney John Ashcroft himself flew to New
York, for the announcement of Lynne’s arrest both at a Federal court news conference
and later that day, with much greater coverage, on the Late Night with David Letterman
The indictment against Lynne charges her with providing material support for
terrorism, and violating Special Administrative Measures (SAMS) imposed by the U.S.
Bureau of Prisons, which included a gag order on Sheik Abdel-Rahman, who Lynne
represented in his 1995 trial. The indictment came a full two years after the last alleged
act. The basis? A public press release; overheard, privileged attorney-client interviews
and wiretapped conversations with the interpreter and paralegal on the case who are also
charged in this indictment.
Lynne pleads: “Emphatically Not Guilty”
Lynne Stewart has been a defense attorney practicing criminal law for 27 years.
Prior to becoming a lawyer, Lynne was teacher in the New York City School system as a
children’s librarian. Lynne is the mother of 3, stepmom to four and the grandmother of 7.
Lynne , as a lawyer, has always been a vigorous defender of her clients, who ranged
from the many poor people caught in the criminal justice system by the economics and/or
the war on drugs to more well known political defendants. These include : David Gilbert,
Weather Underground, Richard Williams of the United Freedom Front, Larry Davis,
acquitted by reason of self defense of attempted murder of NYPO’s, Sekou Odinga,
Black Liberation Army and Nasser Ahmed, released after being imprisoned for 3 ½ years
on non-existent secret evidence. Lynne remains committed to her clients, as their
attorney, until they are no longer in the grasp of the State. This is the work of a criminal
Prior to September 11th and the hastily enacted “Patriot Act”,
Lynne Stewart would never have been indicted at all.