Eugene Fischer -- #32904-004

Life in Prison -- Marijuana Conspiracy

Eugene Fischer, prisoner of the drug warSo what did I do to merit dying in prison? At age 47, I was convicted as a first time, non-violent offender of participating in a marijuana smuggling ring. I was convicted of being the man who helped ship marijuana from Columbia to the United States. No marijuana was ever seized, however the case was made through cooperating witnesses for the conspiracy to smuggle the illegal drug.

My trial was absurd, out of a Kafka novel. It was not fair and was staged in a tiny town in mid-America that I had never been to nor heard of, however, one of the cooperating truckers had ended in. I am not guilty of being a major drug smuggler part of a drug ring with 5 participants as they allege. I do not deserve the sentence they gave me.

I have presented newly discovered evidence to show my innocence. A case came out of the Supreme Court showing trials such as mine as unconstitutional, but no court, including the Illinois court, where I should be allowed to appeal, will hear my appeals. These courts claim that I am "procedurally barred".

Prison has no rehabilitation programs except religious. However, a prisoner has no incentive to use the education programs or maintain good behavior, and there is no compassion for dying prisoners to be released. In my twenty years I have seen many prisoners die. Only a few are released because of terminal illnesses, and only if the doctors say the patient will live for only a few more days.

In 1989, the system of parole which had been in place for 50 years was eliminated! Prior to this, prisoners could work, study and hope that they could prove to the parole board they merited early release. Now prison sentences of 20 years or more are the norm. If a federal prisoner gets a 20-year sentence, he must do the twenty years minus the 47 days credit per year served.

[A return to] Parole would be my solution of choice. Representative Davis out of Chicago has proposed such a bill, however, we need people to show their support for federal parole. Notify your congressmen.

FEDCURE and November Coalition are working endlessly to bring back such a system of parole. Please contact them and show your support. Your help is needed to bring back a system of justice, a light at the end of the tunnel.

Letter from federal inmate Eugene Fisher to US Rep. Danny Davis concerning federal parole (pdf), courtesy of FedCURE, 5/25/08

Visit Eugene's website at