Newsletter: May 2016

Thursday, June 30, 2016
Our newsletters are sent to members at the end of every month. They are composed of articles (usually US death penalty-themed) written by members for members.
We publish an abbreviated version here a month after it was sent out. If you'd like to write for the newsletter and support us, click here to become a member.

Did you know... "[d]eath row inmates today face a one-in-three chance of being executed without having the case properly investigated by a competent attorney and without having any claims of innocence or unfairness presented or heard"?
Lethal Indifference: The Fatal Combination of Incompetent Attorneys and Unaccountable Courts, Texas Defender Service, 2002


Art for Amicus kicks off with Art Reach in Greenwich

We have just announced our programme of Art for Amicus events for 2016 - take a look!
Art Reach, an exhibition of many artists in San Quentin prison in California, will be at Made in Greenwich Gallery, London, from 24th June to 6th July. The calibre is extremely high, so nip down when you can!

Quest for central London art space

We are searching for a space to show the exhibition above in central London during the summer. Must be free or cheap and we can be flexible with dates. Any ideas or space donations very welcome - email

Live Mississippi case streaming

Fascinating watch! Catch the oral arguments by Alex Kassoff of the Mississippi Office of Capital Post-Conviction Counsel (and by the prosecutor) on intellectual disability in Anthony Carr v Mississippi at the Mississippi Supreme Court.

Roll up, roll up: DC internship now reduced to one-month minimum stay

For more details on this potentially ground-breaking project and to apply for a place, scroll down here.

Intern blog

Check out what current interns have been up to on the new Blogs section of our website.


Pfizer blocks the use of its drug in lethal injections

On 13th May, Pfizer, the world's largest pharmaceutical company and the last remaining source of FDA-approved lethal injection drugs, tightened distribution controls on the use of its products. In a statement, Pfizer emphasised that it "makes its products to enhance and save the lives of the patients we serve. Consistent with these values, Pfizer strongly objects to the use of its products as lethal injections for capital punishment." More than 20 American and European drug companies have already adopted such restrictions, meaning that acquiring the required drugs is increasingly difficult.

Watch Amicus trustee Mark George QC discuss this development on Sky News.

30 years after landmark case, exclusion of black jurors continues to plague death penalty

In the United States jury selection or voir dire, is often the most important part of any trial where the defendant is facing the death penalty; it is after all the jury who ultimately have to choose between life and death in the penalty phase. Read more.

Please get in touch with any thoughts, comments or queries. We'd love to hear from you!

Amicus would like to thank James Parr for his contribution to this month's newsletter.