La. inmate conviction in ’72 death issue in appeal

Jan 7, 2014, 8:58 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Lawyers for the state of Louisiana have asked a federal appeals court to reinstate the conviction of prison inmate Albert Woodfox in the 1972 stabbing death of a prison guard, despite objections from activists who say the state’s case is flawed and that Woodfox has suffered from decades of solitary confinement.

Woodfox, a former Black Panther, is one of the inmates supporters have dubbed the “Angola Three,” owing to their long stretches in isolation at Louisiana’s penitentiary in Angola.

At issue in Tuesday’s arguments before the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was whether a federal judge ruled correctly last year that Woodfox’s 1993 indictment was tainted by discrimination in the selection of a grand jury foreman.

Woodfox remains in custody. It is unclear when the court will rule.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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La. inmate conviction in ’72 death issue in appeal