Clive Stafford Smith is the founder and Director of Reprieve.
Clive oversees Reprieve’s casework programme, as well as the direct representation of prisoners in Guantánamo Bay and on death row as a Louisiana licensed attorney at law.
After graduating from Columbia Law School in New York, Clive spent nine years as a lawyer with the Southern Center for Human Rights working on death penalty cases and other civil rights issues.
In 1993, Clive moved to New Orleans and launched the Louisiana Crisis Assistance Center, a non-profit law office specialising in representation of poor people in death penalty cases.
In total, Clive has represented over 300 prisoners facing the death penalty in the southern United States. While he only took on the cases of those who could not afford a lawyer – he has never been paid by a client – and always the most despised, he prevented the death penalty in all but six cases (a 98% “victory” rate).
Few lawyers ever take a case to the US Supreme Court – Clive has taken five, and all of the prisoners prevailed.
You would think with a track record like this, I would have heard about him in law school or even on TV some time – any time. His success record before the Supreme Court alone is newsworthy not to mention his success record in general. I have some case law to read. This will be interesting. Many thanks to my friend David O’Neil for introducing me to him.