Free Leonard Peltier.
Leonard Peltier, an Anishinabe-Lakota Native American is serving two consecutive life sentences. When arrested, he was a leading member of the American Indian Movement, an advocacy group and movement concerned with Native American rights. In 1975, during a confrontation involving AIM members, two FBI agents were shot dead. Leonard was convicted of their murders, but has always maintained his innocence. Amnesty International has studied his case extensively over many years and remains seriously concerned about the fairness of proceedings leading to his trial and conviction. Amnesty believes that political factors may have influenced the way in which the case was prosecuted.
In 2009, Leonard Peltier?s petition for release on parole was denied by the US Parole Commission. In fact, the Commission has repeatedly denied parole on the grounds that Leonard did not accept criminal responsibility for the murders of the two FBI agents. This is despite the fact that, after one such hearing, the Commission acknowledged that, ?the prosecution has conceded the lack of any direct evidence that you personally participated in the executions of two FBI agents.?
Today, Leonard is 71 years old. He suffers from diabetes, and was recently diagnosed with an abdominal aortic aneurysm. Amnesty understands that he is not eligible for consideration for parole again until 2024. Given that all available legal remedies have been exhausted and that that Leonard Peltier has now spent over 40 years in prison and is in poor health, Amnesty believes that the US authorities should order Leonard Peltier?s release from prison on humanitarian grounds and in the interests of justice.