Open letter to the Sunday Times: Linda Carty

March 1, 2010

The following letter was published in the Sunday Times:

The Christmas execution of Akmal Shaikh in China prompted many to ask why more was not done earlier to prevent it. This week the British government is fighting to save the life of another British citizen: Linda Carty in Texas. Now is the time to get very worried about Linda — and to support the government’s Supreme Court appeal on her behalf.

Linda would not be on death row if she had been able to afford a decent defence lawyer. The government has told the Supreme Court that Texas’s failure to notify it of her arrest prevented Linda from receiving desperately needed legal assistance from the British consulate — that would probably have saved her life.

The Supreme Court reopens only a tiny number of cases, so there is a real possibility that Linda will die without her case ever having been properly heard. Reprieve is launching a Save Linda Carty campaign to rally public support for this intervention before it is too late.

Signatories:

Julie Christie; Colin and Livia Firth; Zadie Smith; Philip Pullman; Dr Margaret Busby OBE; Peter Davison; Anna Chancellor; David Morrissey; Lady Hollick; Ahdaf Soueif; Pauline Melville; Patrick Vernon; Benedict Birnberg; Caryl Phillips; Maggie Gee; Baroness Young of Hornsey; Biyi Bandele; Kim Longinotto; Louisa Young; Colleen Harris; John Williams and Crossroads Women’s Centre.

This article first appeared in the Sunday Times.