I went to many "Free Geronimo Pratt" demonstrations over the years. He was framed by the FBI, probably COINTELPRO for a crime he could not possibly have committed as he was some 400 miles away in Oakland at the time the robbery murder occurred.
He was one of America's foremost political prisoners along with Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu-Jama, railroaded into prison and in Mumia's case facing the death penalty for crimes they did not commit.
In the case of Geronimo Pratt, his main crime was being a member of the Black Panther Party.
From Erica Henry, CNN
June 3, 2011
(CNN) -- Former Black Panther Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt, who was wrongly imprisoned for 27 years on a murder conviction, died Thursday in Tanzania, his former lawyer said.
He was 63.
Stuart Hanlon, a San Francisco-based lawyer who helped overturn Pratt's murder conviction, said he did not know the exact cause of death.
Pratt died in a small village in Tanzania where he lived with his wife and child, Hanlon said.
Hanlon called Pratt a "true American," saying that he was an Army veteran who served two tours in Vietnam before joining the Black Panther Party.
"He could've been a great leader. He was very charismatic," Hanlon said. "His legacy is that he never gave up. He never got despondent or angry."
Pratt's conviction became a rallying cry for rights groups that said he had been framed for his strident activism during the turbulent civil rights era.
Continue reading at: http://www.cnn.com/2011/US/06/03/california.pratt.death/