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Support progressive Atty. Lynne Stewart

Progressive attorney Lynne Stewart won an important round in a battle with the Ashcroft Justice Department last July when a federal judge dismissed government charges against her of "supporting terrorism" as unconstitutional.

On Nov. 22, however, Stewart received another blow. The U.S. government re-indicted her.

Stewart was charged with passing messages from her legal client Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, a blind cleric convicted by the U.S. government of conspiracy to bomb the World Trade Center in 1993, to his followers. Attorney General John Ashcroft himself announced the indictment, accompanied by a tempest of publicity.

At her initial arraignment, Stewart pleaded "emphatically not guilty."

Now, as Stewart's attorneys prepare to file a pretrial motion on Jan. 23, the Lynne Stewart Defense Committee asks progressives to close ranks to win this case.

Stewart's lawyer Michael Tigar stresses that the government case against his client has at least three fundamental flaws. It's an attack on the First Amendment rights of free speech, free press and petition; an attack on the right to effective assistance of counsel; and the "evidence" was gathered by invasion of private conversations, private attorney-client meetings, faxes, letters and emails.

For information on how you can help support this important struggle, visit the defense committee website:

--Leslie Feinberg

Reprinted from the Jan. 8, 2004, issue of Workers World newspaper

This article is copyright under a Creative Commons License.
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