Lutte pour la Justice
Le comité Lutte pour la Justice (LPJ) was created in 1996 by Odell Barnes, a death row prisoner in Texas who wanted to have his innocence recognised and the right to a new trial. His three French correspondents took on his cause the very same year. This informal committee aimed to provide moral support and, above all, find funding to examine the counterclaim in more detail and finance a competent lawyer. It became a legal association in 1999 so as to improve transparency and efficiency.
Thanks to the funds collected, the 5-strong Texan defence team, assisted by volunteers, was able to carry out a comprehensive second enquiry and provide proof of Odell Barnes’ innocence. However, none of Texas’ judges wanted to take this proof into account and the prisoner was executed on 1 March 2000.
Lutte pour la Justice thereafter shifted its focus to new cases in the United States and Texas in particular. It no longer provides support to individual death row prisoners but rather to local committees and groups of activists supporting a prisoner sentenced to death.
This support takes various forms: advice, financial assistance, moral support, information and communication, etc. LPJ prioritises concrete work on the ground, partnerships with other associations and moral support to both prisoners and their correspondents, and therefore humbly includes itself in the fight for universal abolition of the death penalty.