TX: Linda Carty - UK government appeal for death row woman
Sun May 10, 2009 06:47

UK government appeal for death row woman


Sunday, 10 May 2009
The government has intervened in the case of a British woman facing the death penalty in Texas, the Foreign Office has confirmed.

Linda Carty was sentenced to death in 2002 for her part in the abduction and murder of a 25-year-old woman after a trial campaigners say was "catastrophically flawed".

Last week, the UK government sent an amicus brief to the US Appeals court complaining of lack of notification of the woman's arrest and trial and "ineffective counsel".

A Foreign Office spokeswoman added that it will make representations against the use of the death penalty.

Carty, 50, was arrested and later convicted in connection to the kidnap and murder of Joana Rodriguez, who was seized alongside her four-day-old son by three men on 16 May 2001.

The baby was later found unharmed in a car, but Rodriguez was found dead, having suffocated after having duct-tape put over her mouth and a plastic bag placed around her head.

At the subsequent trial, prosecutors argued that the men were hired by Carty who, unable to get pregnant herself, intended to "cut the baby out" out of the woman and pass the child off as her own.

It was claimed that the accused had bought surgical scissors ahead of the abduction.

According to legal campaign group Reprieve, the prosecution's claim should have been objected to on the grounds that the baby had already been born and the inadequacy of the scissors purchased if they were to be used for such a procedure.

Campaigners have highlighted a number of other failings during the trial.

Carty believes she was framed for the crime by the three men who carried out the abduction due to her earlier work as an informant for the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). But the DEA agent who recruited Carty was not interviewed over her claims.

Reprieve notes that the court-appointed defence lawyer has seen 20 of his clients ending up on death row - believed to be the highest of any defence lawyer in the US.

In addition the authorities failed to contact the British Embassy or inform Carty of her right to consular assistance at the time of arrest or trial.

She was born on the Caribbean island of St Kitts to parents from the British overseas territory of Anguilla. Carty holds a UK dependent territory passport and as such the British national's arrest should have been notified to the British Embassy under a bilateral treaty between the UK and US.

More than seven years after the death sentence was handed down, her case is now in the hands of the Federal Courts - the final stage in the appeal process.

A spokesman for the British Embassy in Washington said an Amicus Curiae (friend of the court) brief had been sent to the US County Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on May 4.

He said: "The brief focused on the issues of consular notification and ineffective counsel."

A Foreign Office spokeswoman added: "The British government is opposed to the death penalty in all circumstances.

"We make representations against the use of the death penalty on a British national at whatever stage and level is judged appropriate.

"We remain in close contact with Ms Carty and her legal representation in the US and UK and continue to provide Ms Carty with consular assistance."

Responding to the move, Clive Stafford Smith, director of Reprieve said: "It is admirable that the government has filed this brief on Linda's behalf.

"Linda's plight is very serious - Texas is dedicated to the death penalty, and she could face execution as early as next year. I suspect she needs the help of her government more than any other British citizen right now."

  • British woman on death row makes final bid to avoid execution Former primary schoolteacher wants retrial after conviction for taking part in murder Duncan Campbell uk, Sunday 29 March... more
    • GuiltyCarla, Fri Mar 16 23:08
      She was a drug dealer, that wanted terrible a baby an stole the baby and killed the mother, both were found in her cars. She us a cunning criminal that should have executed, who speaks for the baby... more
    • TX: Linda Carty - UK government appeal for death row woman — Petra., Sun May 10 06:47
      • I would like to add that not once has Linda mentioned the victim. All she had done is tell people she didn't do it. If that were true and she really didn't do it then she could have stopped who ever... more
      • The human face of death row (8 pictures)Petra, Fri Jun 26 14:59
        The human face of death row (8 pictures) 5 / 8 Linda Carty is a British citizen who has been on... more
        • Face-to-face with death row inmates at London show Fri Jul 3, 2009 By Julie Mollins LONDON (Reuters Life!) - Death row inmates depicted in oil paintings by British artist Claire Phillips, on view in... more
          • abusesYvette Holden, Sat Jul 4 05:56
            Why are we not appalled by prisoners being abused? Or is it only when they have been exonerated we object because now this innocent person has been tortured! Prisoners being abused is not acceptable... more
            • Re: abusesxkittenx, Sun Jul 5 10:20
              you think she will be found innocent? Linda Carty is a law onto herself and she does not help matter with her attuiude,she thinks she is above the rest of us,guily or not maybe this bring her back to ... more
              • ReplyYvette Holden, Mon Jul 6 01:52
                I know very little about this womans case so I cannot comment on guilt or innocence ( but a convicted in Texas the chances are the woman is innocent). My opinion was concerning her being abused by... more
                • Re: ReplyPetra, Mon Jul 6 16:41
                  I never saw a consequense for officals, just a "go ahead" with torture and murder .... TORTURE:... more
                  • abusesYvette Holden, Thu Jul 9 05:12
                    This just confirms what I wrote we all turn a blind eye to the abuses which is totally unacceptable but I believe prison abuses and long sentences all tie in. They dish out long sentences this makes... more
      • TX: PETITION - Free Linda CartyPetra, Fri May 15 14:16
        Free Linda Carty Target:Gov. Rick Perry, the state of Texas Sponsored by: The Hudson's Women's Aid; Heidi Isabelle Moan and Gavin Reeves We, the undersigned urge you to respect , Ms Carty's rights,... more
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