Gerry Conlon RIP: The Bravest of Fighters, For Himself and Others
Gerry Conlon, one of the most infamous victims of a miscarriage of justice who spent 15 years in a British prison after being wrongly convicted of an IRA bombing, has died of cancer at 60 in his native Belfast. One of the Guildford Four, Conlon had to watch his father Giuseppe die in prison as one of the Maguire Seven, Conlon relatives later rounded up as alleged accomplices in the same bombing campaign - an ordeal powerfully portrayed in the film in the Name of the Father. Until shortly before his death, Conlon had continued fighting for justice for others - those wrongly imprisoned, detainees at Guantánamo, Chelsea Manning, England's beleaguered Muslim community. His battle for freedom, and after his 1989 release, for peace, "should haunt us forever," said his lawyer Gareth Peirce: "Once a community has been made suspect en masse every organ of the state will feel entitled, in fact obliged, to discover proof of their suspicions....Lessons should have been learned."
His family: He "forced the world's closed eyes to be opened to injustice."