Media April 2023
Revolutionary Journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal - 69 years old on Monday 24th April
Mumia Abu-Jamal is a revolutionary journalist, former Black Panther, and political prisoner. After being falsely convicted of the 1981 killing of a police officer, he was sentenced to death. In 2011 this was revised to life without parole – a living death behind the bars of the US incarceration machine. Mumia’s latest appeal has now been rejected. Solidarity is needed now!
Prior to his arrest Mumia was a target of the infamous COINTELPRO, the FBI’s system of covert and illegal projects aimed at destroying the activities of political activists, involving every tactic from phone-tapping to murder. From the outset, the prosecution case against Mumia’s was beset with racism, coercion, and corruption.
Who is Mumia Abu Jamal
As a teenager, Mumia helped form the Philadelphia branch of the Black Panther Party. He became a distinguished young journalist and is known for defending MOVE, the multi-racial, Black-led commune advocating for nature and animal rights. In 1980 Mumia was framed for killing a policeman in a trial drenched in racism. Black jurors were excluded, the judge a known racist, key evidence was withheld and ‘lost’ for decades, witnesses bribed and coerced. Mumia’s real ‘crime’ is to be outspoken, articulate, and a dedicated movement journalist. Mumia has inspired support around the world because he uses his talents and energy to strengthen every movement for justice, including environmental justice.
Read more: https://bringmumiahome.com/
William Holden Waterbaorded/Tortured by the British Army - £300,000 Damages
Legal action by Mr. Holden, against the Ministry Of Defence and Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland. In respect of the Mr. Holden’s claim for damages for personal injuries, loss and damage sustained by him arising out of the ill treatment of the plaintiff during the plaintiff’s unlawful detention at Black Mountain Army Base, to include water boarding, hooding and threats to kill, malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office, I make the following awards:
(a) Waterboarding, hooding and threat to kill £50,000×00
William Holden, spent 17 years in prison after his wrongful conviction for the killing of a British Army private. Mr Holden was arrested approximately a month after the killing of Private Frank Bell, who died on September 20 1972, three days after he was shot by a sniper while on patrol in Ballymurphy. “He spent the next 17 years in Long Kesh. A lot of people would find this quite daunting but he spoke of this part of his life with great fondness, loved the sense of camaraderie, togetherness, empathy, the sharing of a common cause,” Fr Downey said.
Criminal Record Checks/Disclosure
As a society, we must strike a balance between the appropriate highlighting to the public of those who may possess criminal backgrounds and the ability of individuals who have paid their debt to society to rehabilitate back into civil life. Recognise that possessing a criminal record carries much stigma that can hinder individuals' ability to move on from their previous crimes and become productive members of society.
Through the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022, the Government brought forward several measures to update the criminal record framework and reduce the burden placed on past offenders. Through this Act, a rehabilitation period was introduced for some sentences of over four years, meaning that for non-sensitive jobs or activities, offenders would not need to disclose their conviction to their employers. In addition to this, those serving community order and sentences under four years would no longer have to reveal this to most employers. These measures aim to boost employment prospects and create a better path from offending and back into meaningful work.
Prisoners: Employment and Pay
Steve Reed MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) male and (b) female prisoners were (i) working in (A) voluntary and (B) paid work placements on release on temporary licence and (ii) paid enhanced wages under the Prisoners Earnings Act 1996 in public sector prisons in the latest period for which data is available.
Damian Hinds MP: Data on release on temporary licence (ROTL) is published quarterly: Offender management statistics quarterly: July to September 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk). The following table shows the number of prisoners who had at least one release on temporary licence (ROTL) to a paid work placement from public prisons in England and Wales between 1 July and 30 September 2022 (latest period available): Paid work Male 1,938 Female 195