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Inaugural International Wrongful Conviction Day – Thursday 2 October 2014

Wrongful Conviction Could Happen to Anyone - Give Your Support to an Important Day

“This is an important event intended to call attention to the human rights issue of wrongful convictions. Every week, if not every day, a person who was wrongly convicted of a crime they didn’t commit is being exonerated somewhere in the world. It could – and does – happen to anyone.”

- David Langwallner, Founding Director of the Irish Innocence Project at Griffith College Dublin

Griffith College and the Irish Innocence Project will be hosting a special event in observance of the First International Wrongful Conviction Day on Thursday 2 October from 5-6pm at the College’s Dublin campus auditorium. The public is invited to attend and the event is free.

A number of talks from key legal experts will be held including a presentation on wrongful convictions from David Langwallner, Dean of Law at Griffith College. Speakers at the event will include family members of the Justice for Harry Gleeson group. They have been working with the Irish Innocence Project to clear the name of Harry Gleeson, believed to have been wrongly executed for the murder of his neighbor Moll McCarthy more than 70 years ago, although the legacy of his hanging impacts the family still. The Harry Gleeson case was featured on Prime Time on July 24, 2014.

The First Annual Event 

This Thursday’s first commemoration was the idea of the Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted in Toronto, Canada. It is intended to be an event, to be marked annually, to enlighten the public as to the consequences of wrongful convictions. The date – 2nd October – is not tied to any specific event, but is intended to provide an opportunity to unite with others and increase public awareness about the common cause of preventing and remedying wrongful convictions.

The Innocence Project Network

The first Innocence Project started in New York in 1992 and since then a total of 68 projects have been launched around the world under the Innocence Network umbrella membership organisation to investigate likely wrongful convictions and overturn miscarriages of justice. The Innocence movement is now recognised as one of the newest and most pressing human rights issues of growing concern around the globe.

There have been 136 people exonerated from death row in the US as a result of Innocence Projects, most recently a pair of half-brothers who had served 30 years on death row before they were freed.

The Innocence Project in Ireland

The Irish Innocence Project was founded in 2009 and has a team of more than a dozen law and journalism students from Griffith College, Trinity College, Dublin City University and the University of Limerick working on about 20 likely wrongful convictions under the guidance of supervising lawyers. Some of the investigative work of the Irish project has led to a case coming back before the Irish High Court, assistance being given in an international case in Greece, and a request for a pardon from the Minister for Justice in Ireland.

Show Your Support if You Can!

 

Useful Resources

Irish Innocence Project

Innocence Network

Griffith Faculty of Law

Law Programmes at Griffith College

LLB in Law

LLB in Law (online)

LLM in International Human Rights Law