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Support Lynne Stewart: The “Peoples Lawyer” Behind Bars

13 July 2010

By El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan

Assalaamu Alaikum (Greetings of Peace):

Attorney Lynne Stewart has been one of the most courageous friends the Muslim community has had in the "Big Apple." On many occasions she was present when the Arab and Muslim community needed her. Now Lynne Stewart - a newly minted political prisoner in the United States of America - needs us!

I am planning to be in attendance at tonight's program in New York City. What about you?

Send Personal Letters of support for Lynne TODAY to Judge John G. Koeltl.
Personal Letters to Judge Koeltl urging him to consider Lynne Stewarts’s many years of service to the people are very helpful.

Address your letter to:

Honorable John G. Koeltl, United States District Judge, Southern District of New York,
500 Pearl Street , New York , NY 10007

BUT MAIL TO: Lynne Stewart Defense Committee,
350 Broadway, Suite 700 , NY , NY 10013 .

OR 1070 Dean St. , Brooklyn , NY 11216
(Don’t mail your letter to the judge.)

The Defense Committee will accumulate the letters for the attorneys who will then submit them to the Judge.

For more information: www.lynnestewart.org

Send letters of support to Lynne Stewart at:
Lynne Stewart, #53504-054
MCC-NY
150 Park Row
New York , NY 10007

DO NOT LET LYNNE STAND ALONE!

Who is Lynne Stewart?

Lynne Stewart, the 70 year old “Peoples Lawyer” should not be in jail. The charges, long trial and her conviction are an effort at government intimidation.

Lynne was ordered to prison to begin serving her sentence after her bail was revoked in November 2009, even though her Appeal is still under review and her potential further Appeal to the Supreme Court is pending.

In a dangerous and unprecedented higher court ruling the judge is directed to re-sentence her to a much harsher sentence then the already outrageous 28 months she is currently serving.

Support for Lynne Stewart is urgently needed – BEFORE her scheduled July 15 re-sentencing in Federal Court.

Send letters, petitions, plan news broadcasts, interviews, announcements, resolutions, rallies!

Lynne Stewart is internationally known as the “People’s Lawyer” for her decades of tireless defense of political prisoners and unpopular clients in social justice and human rights cases.

The “Justice for Lynne Stewart” Web site (www.lynnestewart.org) describes the government’s case against Stewart as “an obvious attempt ... to silence dissent, curtail vigorous defense lawyers, and instill fear in those who would fight against the U.S. government’s racism, seek to help Arabs and Muslims being prosecuted for free speech and defend the rights of all oppressed people.”

The case of seventy-year-old great grandmother, cancer survivor, former school librarian, long time political activist / organizer, and former New York City defense attorney Lynne Stewart is indicative of the U.S. Government's ongoing attempts to frighten, discredit, intimidate, and silence the people of this nation, and most particularly in this case, defense attorneys who dare to seriously exercise the constitutional right and duty to provide their clients with a vigorous and uncompromising legal defense.

This incredibly courageous woman must not be abandoned by us. She has serious health problems and dangerous blood pressure problems. She has been torn from her life-partner Ralph Poynter, her children and grandchildren, her many friends and the many defendants she represented.

Lynne did not abandon justice-loving people and we cannot abandon her. Lynne Stewart is known for seeking justice not only in the courts but also on the streets, appearing at many protests and rallies.

Attorney Lynne Stewart is a target and a victim of the Patriot Act. We must remember that Lynne Stewart spoke and speaks truth to power on behalf of the everyday people and we can do no less.

So many wild lies have been sensationalized in the media over the past 8 years that it is important to review the facts.

On Tuesday, April 9, 2002 Lynne Stewart was arrested based on charges that 2 years earlier she had issued a press release on the views of her client Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, a blind, diabetic and disabled Egyptian cleric held in total isolation in Federal Prison. No one was injured or hurt by her action and her press release was not a crime. It was an administrative violation.

Wiretaps and hidden cameras were used by the Government to illegally eavesdrop on attorney/client conversations to gather “evidence” against her.

Her widely publicized arrest by Attorney General John Ashcroft was treated as a tabloid sensation and the crime of the century. The jury was whipped up by fear mongering around terror threats and 9/11 baiting. Despite the fear and intimidation many thousands of people rallied in her defense, held fund-raisers, meetings and packed the court room day after day of a nine month trial.

On February 10, 2005, Lynne Stewart was found guilty of conspiracy, providing material support to terrorists and defrauding the U.S. government. Her conviction meant automatic disbarment.

The prosecution urged a sentence of 30 years in order to: “not only punish Stewart for her actions, but serve as a deterrent for other lawyers.”

On October 16, 2006, Stewart was sentenced to 28 months after a national letter campaign to the judge by supporters, past clients, lawyers and even prosecutors. Judge Koeltl rejected the prosecutors’ argument that she threatened national security and ruled there was no evidence her actions caused any harm. Judge Koeltl said that during her long career of representing unpopular clients Stewart had "performed a public service, not only to her clients, but to the nation."

On November 17, 2009, a three-judge panel of the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on her and the government's appeals. The higher court upheld Lynne Stewart’s conviction, ordered the district court to revoke her bail immediately, and demanded that she be resentenced by the judge who originally sentenced her, urging him to consider additional factors for a longer sentence. Prosecutors in the 2005 trial had wanted 30 years.

To put Lynne Stewart behind bars when no one was injured, no one was harmed, when those who produced the torture memos, those who produced the wars are going free is an outrage and a crime against justice.

Lynne Stewart believes her case is a trumped-up maneuver to warn attorneys with an interest in social justice away from taking on the government. Says Stewart: “I believe the larger implications are that this is a warning shot for other lawyers. Don’t advocate for your clients in a vigorous, strong way or you will end up like she did. Disbarred and in jail.”

By supporting Lynne Stewart, we are loving and supporting the very best in ourselves. We are defending the Bill of Rights and civil liberties.

Be in court – 500 Pearl Street , in lower Manhattan , Judge Koeltl courtroom when Lynne Stewart is resentenced on JULY 15 at 2:30 pm. Support rally in front of Federal Court begins at 11 am.

Personal Letters to Judge Koeltl urging him to consider Lynne Stewarts’s many years of service to the people are very helpful.

Address your letter to:

Honorable John G. Koeltl, United States District Judge, Southern District of New York,
500 Pearl Street , New York , NY 10007

BUT MAIL TO: Lynne Stewart Defense Committee,
350 Broadway, Suite 700 , NY , NY 10013 .

OR 1070 Dean St. , Brooklyn , NY 11216
(Don’t mail your letter to the judge.)

The Defense Committee will accumulate the letters for the attorneys who will then submit them to the Judge.

Send letters of support to Lynne Stewart at:

Lynne Stewart, #53504-054
MCC-NY
150 Park Row
New York , NY 10007

THURSDAY, July 8, – 6:pm
Judson Memorial Church , 55 Washington Square South

FUNDRAISER with GREAT GUEST SPEAKERS!!

WEDNESDAY, July 14,

5:pm March & Rally @ Tom Paine Park to MCC

Foley Square , Worth & Centre Street, in front of Court Buildings

7:pm Vigil in Support of Lynne behind MCC-Jail: 150 Park Row

THURSDAY, July 15, 2010: 2:30pm
SENTENCING DAY: Federal Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street , NYC

Come Early 11 am: Rally & PACK THE COURT!!!

For more information: www.lynnestewart.org

 

 

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