School children, home raids and Emmy’s (world news)

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Prisons face severe food shortages
Zimbabwe Prison Services (ZPS) has been hit by a critical shortage of food to feed more than 17 000 prisoners in the country’s 72 prisons. Zimbabwe Association of Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation of Offenders chief executive officer, Edison Chihota, said the situation has worsened since 2008 and government must act if it is to abate the crises looming at the country’s prisons.

Did the wrong man spend 40 years in solitary confinement?
Herman Wallace was placed in solitary confinement after being convicted in January 1974 of killing a prison guard at Louisiana’s notorious Angola prison. It is now only a matter of weeks or days before he dies of liver cancer that is ravaging his body. He will likely die at, age 72, without proper medical treatment, after spending nearly four decades in a 6’ by 9’ cell.

Michael Douglas blasts the US penal system at the Emmys. He’s exactly right
Michael Douglas caused a few ripples when he picked up an Emmy award for his performance as Liberace in the film, Behind the Candelabra. Douglas gave a shout to his eldest son, Cameron, who is currently being held in solitary confinement in a federal penitentiary.

Magistrate Judge candidates square off over experience, pre-trial services, role of court
Three candidates vying of for the position of magistrate judge at Orleans Parish Criminal District Court faced off this week, challenging each other on their experience, dedication to pre-trial services and how best to utilize the position of magistrate that some groups have targeted for downsizing.

British Legal Aid cuts fell leading UK barrister
Legal aid cuts have driven the closure of one of Britain’s leading barristers, Michael Mansfield QC. Justice Secretary Chris Grayling also wants to cut the fees paid to fat cat lawyers, reducing payments by 30% in “very high cost cases” that last more than 90 days.

Russian courts order activists held over Arctic oil protest
Russian court denies 15 detainees, who had been among 30 people aboard a Greenpeace ship used to stage the protest at the Prirazlomnaya oil platform, were denied bail by judges in the northern city of Murmansk.

Bahrain school children arrested in home raids and denied education
Bahrain security forces have arrested a number of school children for reasons relating to freedom of expression. The security forces have raided a number of homes in different areas around Bahrain arresting students under 18.

Ex-prisoner fails to halt police DNA-collection programme
Former prisoner fails in legal challenge that could have forced police to destroy thousands of DNA samples collected from those convicted of serious crimes before 1994.

Guilty until proven innocent
Donovan Drayton was arrested and accused of murder days after a 30-year-old man’s bullet-riddled body was found in the doorway of a single-family home in South Jamaica Queens. Drayton spent five years behind bars as a pretrial detainee.

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About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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