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News Link • Criminal Justice System

Torturous Milestone: 40 Years in Solitary

•, By James Ridgeway and Jean Casell

On the world stage, Guantanamo may well stand as the epitome of American human rights abuses. But when it comes to torture on US soil, that grim distinction is held by two aging African-American men. As of today, Herman Wallace and Albert Woodfox have spent 40 years in near-continuous solitary confinement in the bowels of the Louisiana prison system. Most of those years were spent at the notorious Angola Prison, which is why the pair are still known as members of the Angola 3. The third man, Robert King, was released in 2001—his conviction was overturned after he'd spent 29 years in solitary.

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