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ACLU calls on Justice Department to act on cases of improperly incarcerated

Good for the ACLU for calling attention to this ongoing injustice:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OCTOBER 25, 2012

ACLU: U.S. Attorneys are prolonging the incarceration of wrongly imprisoned people:

ACLU urges Justice Department to take immediate corrective action to release or provide relief to those wrongly incarcerated in North Carolina, as officials had promised  

RALEIGH – U.S. attorneys have still not taken all promised steps to provide relief to potentially hundreds of federal inmates in North Carolina whose convictions or sentences have since been found improper, the American Civil Liberties Union and its North Carolina and Massachusetts affiliates wrote in an Oct. 12 letter to federal officials. The letter comes more than a month after the U.S. Department of Justice vowed to take “concrete steps” to provide appropriate relief.

In August the ACLU asked the Justice Department to take immediate action to identify and assist all federal inmates in North Carolina who remain incarcerated for violating federal gun possession laws even though a 2011 decision by the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in United States v. Simmons has since found that it was not federal crime for them to have a gun.

In an Oct. 12 letter to H. Marshall Jarrett, Director of the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, the ACLU writes that the Justice Department continues to oppose post-conviction relief for the vast majority of improperly sentenced inmates and that U.S. attorneys in the Western District of North Carolina are “still prolonging the incarceration of innocent people” by failing to respond in a timely manner to motions for relief.

“The [Justice] Department’s response to Simmons has been, and continues to be, inadequate,” the letter states. “…It is unfortunate that, more than a year after Simmons, there is still so much justice left to be done. But we are hopeful that the Department will take corrective action now.”

Read the entire letter online at acluofnc.org.

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