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24. Dezember 2005

umwandlung eines todesurteil zu lebenslang mit der aussicht auf entlassung. der mann, bei dessen 1983 gerichtsverfahren von der staatsanwaltschaft beweise zurückgehalten wurden ( angebl. wurden diese verlegt und tauchten 2001 kurz vor einem angesetzten hinrichtungstermin wieder auf), ist mittlerweile 70 jahre und hat auf einen neuen prozeß verzichtet. er hofft jetzt über den bewährungsausschuß entlassen zu werden, was die staatsanwaltschft verhindern will.

Death penalty withdrawn over misplaced evidence

A judge rescinded ax killer Elroy Tillman's death sentence Friday and gave him life in prison with the possibility of parole, but state attorneys promised to fight to keep the 70-year-old in prison for the rest of his life. Tillman waived his right to have a jury decide a new sentence and, by agreement with prosecutors, accepted the deal approved by 3rd District Judge Leslie Lewis.

The victim's family didn't want to relive the ordeal of court proceedings 22 years after Tillman's conviction, Assistant Attorney General Creighton Horton said Friday. Tillman turned his fate over to the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole, which has yet to schedule a hearing to consider whether he'll ever be released. When it does hold the hearing, the board likely will tell Tillman, "We'll chat about it (a possible release) in 30 years," Horton said.

The change of events came four months after the state Supreme Court overturned Tillman's death sentence -- but not his 1983 murder conviction -- over complaints that prosecutors misplaced some evidence that surfaced only weeks before Tillman was scheduled to be executed in 2001. At 70, Tillman could die on his own before prosecutors could have assured his execution, Horton said. "We determined the best approach would be for us to put our energy going before parole board to argue Tillman should never be released," Horton said.

Tillman was convicted of bludgeoning Mark Schoenfeld with the blunt end of an ax as he lay asleep, then setting fire to his bed before leaving. Schoenfeld had been dating Tillman's ex-girlfriend. The missing evidence was a partial script of an interview by a police polygrapher with a woman who testified she joined Tillman at the murder scene but didn't participate in the bludgeoning. Tillman's appeals lawyers argued the script raised questions about Carla Sagers' credibility. The transcript indicated Sagers was laughing while being accused of sharing greater complicity in the crime.

[  magicvalley.com

24. Dezember 2005

6 männer, die am 16. august aus dem knast in zhoukou ausbrachen und dabei 3 wärter und eine geisel verletzt hätten, wurden zum tod verurteilt.

Six Chinese prison inmates sentenced to death for violent escape

Six prison inmates were sentenced to death for a violent escape in August, the government said Saturday. The prisoners escaped from a prison in the central city of Zhoukou on Aug. 16 by using homemade tools to open a prison gate, the official Xinhua News Agency said. It said they beat three guards and a hostage. They were later captured, Xinhua said. The sentences were handed down Friday by a court in Zhoukou, in Henan province, the report said. It didn't say anyone was killed in the escape, but Chinese courts frequently impose death sentences for nonfatal offenses ranging from tax evasion to rape. There was no indication why the inmates were in prison.

[  eitb24.com

22. Dezember 2005

gescheitert ist vorerst der versuch des new york state govenor pataki die todesstrafe für mord an polizisten wieder einzuführen. die höchststrafe wurde stattdessen auf lebenslänglich ohne aussicht auf bewährung festgelegt.

Bid to restore state death penalty fails

Gov. George E. Pataki's attempt to restore the death penalty for killing a police officer was scuttled Wednesday, as he and state lawmakers agreed on a new law requiring mandatory sentences of life without parole for those convicted of such crimes.

In the special session called by Pataki after two recent killings of New York City police officers, the Legislature also backed tougher penalties for selling or possessing illegal firearms. Pataki's plan would have restored a part of the state's now defunct death penalty law, which became unusable last year after the state's highest court tossed out a key sentencing provision. The Democratic-led Assembly's rejection of the latest death penalty proposal cemented a movement to block restoration of a law Pataki had hailed as his top criminal justice achievement when it was adopted in 1995.

Legislators, however, acknowledged that death penalty advocates lost a major battle when the Assembly declined to back the measure for those who kill police officers.

"We are getting a result, and life without parole is a lot better than where we are now in terms of punishment," said State Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno, R-Brunswick.

While halting the death penalty measure, the Assembly Democrats suffered a political defeat Wednesday with the gun trafficking bill. They backed down from threats not to pass any bill unless it included new restrictions on gun dealers and banned possession of armor-piercing bullets. The gun lobby opposed both provisions. "What we're doing is closing the front door but leaving the back door wide open," Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, said of Wednesday's deal that he insisted does not go far enough to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.

The new law will mandate a sentence of life without parole for anyone convicted of intentionally killing a police officer; current law gives sentencing judges discretion of life without parole or sentences of 20 to 25 years to life, with parole. The new law also provides longer prison terms for attempting to kill or menacing a police officer with a weapon. The gun trafficking bill will sharply increase penalties for possession and sale of illegal guns. Current law treats possession of as many as 20 such guns as a misdemeanor.

The new law, signed Wednesday night by Pataki, lowers to three the number of illegal guns that would be considered a felony, punishable by at least two years in prison. Possessing 10 or more illegal guns can lead to 10 years in prison. Pataki and Silver had sought stronger sanctions against armor-piercing bullets, which Senate Republicans opposed. That provision was dropped, Pataki said, to focus on winning approval of the gun trafficking and police protection measures.

[  buffalonews.com

15. Dezember 2005

Laut der aussage von barbara becnel ,die bei der hinrichtung von stanley tookie williams zeugin war, hat tookie williams hinrichtung fast 35 minuten gedauert in denen er sehr gelitten hat.

The body of Stanley Tookie Williams will be cremated and his ashes spread in South Africa, following a large memorial service in Los Angeles, according to a close friend. Williams was executed this morning despite international attention over a nationwide campaign to save his life. The reformed gang member was put to death for the murder of four people 25 years ago. Barbara Becnel, Williams' close friend who led the campaign to save his life, said she was making the arrangements today. Becnel, who believes Williams did not commit the four murders for which he was executed, said the NAACP Legal Defense Fund has promised her its resources in proving Williams' innocence. Becnel witnessed the execution. "He suffered," she said. "He was writhing,lifting his head up and fussing" at the guards for taking so long. "It was horrible. To me, it was torture. It took 35 minutes to kill him."

[  prisonactivist.org

December 2005

2005 wurden 60 menschen hingerichtet.

Seit dem ende des moratoriums 1977 wurden 1004 menschen legal ermordet.

Für 2006 sind bisher folgende hinrichtungstermine bekannt:

17. januar 2006 California Clarence Ray Allen

19. januar 2006 Texas Julius Murphy

19. januar 2006 Ohio John Spirko

20. januar 2006 North Carolina Perrie Simpson

24. januar 2006 Florida Clarence Hill

25. januar 2006 Texas Marion Dudley

31. januar 2006 Texas Jamie Elizalde

31. januar 2006 Florida Arthur Rutherford

07. februar 2006 Tennessee Gregory Thompson

08. februar 2006 Texas Robert Neville Jr.

15. februar 2006 Texas Clyde Smith

23. februar 2006 Texas Steven Staley

14. märz 2006 Texas Tony Ford

15. märz 2006 Texas Tommie Hughes

22 .märz 2006 Texas Robert Salazar Jr.

29. märz 2006 Texas Kevin Kincy

25. april 2006 Texas Pedro Sosa

28. juni 2006 Tennessee Paul Reid

[  cuadp.org

10. Dezember 2005

seit Freitag, 9.12.2005, ist die todesstrafe offiziell abgeschafft.

Mexico outlaws death penalty

MEXICO CITY - The Mexican government formally abolished the last vestiges of its death penalty on Friday. President Vicente Fox described as "historic" the publication in the official gazette of the constitutional changes, which were approved by the Mexican Congress in June and by a majority of state legislatures in the intervening months. "Mexico shares the opinion that capital punishment is a violation of human rights," Fox said. "Today, the death penalty has been abolished." The Mexican legal system has not put anyone to death since 1961, and courts usually refuse to extradite suspects to the United States or other countries if there is a chance they could wind up on death row. But capital punishment was, until Friday, still technically legal, especially in military courts.

[  chron.com

3. Dezember 2005

die 1000 hinrichtung seit der aufhebung des moratoriums 1977 fand am 2. dezember in north carolina statt.

N.C. execution a U.S. milestone

RALEIGH - A convicted killer from North Carolina became the 1,000th person put to death in the U.S. since capital punishment resumed in 1977 when the state executed Kenneth Lee Boyd early Friday for the 1988 murders of his wife and father-in-law.

Boyd, 57, received a lethal injection and was pronounced dead at 2:15 a.m., state Department of Correction spokeswoman Pam Walker said. His death came after both Gov. Mike Easley and the U.S. Supreme Court declined to intervene and stop the execution. "Having carefully reviewed the facts and circumstances of these crimes and convictions, I find no compelling reason to grant clemency and overturn the unanimous jury verdicts affirmed by the state and federal courts," Easley said in a statement issued a few hours before the execution.

Boyd did not deny that he shot and killed Julie Curry Boyd, 36, and her father, 57-year-old Thomas Dillard Curry, in rural Rockingham County near the Virginia line. Family members have said Boyd stalked his estranged wife after they separated following 13 years of marriage and once sent a son to her house with a bullet and a note saying the ammunition was intended for her. Boyd's son Christopher was pinned under his mother's body as he fired a .357-Magnum pistol into her. The boy pushed his way under a nearby bed to escape the shots. Another son grabbed the pistol while Boyd tried to reload.

The evidence clearly supported a death sentence, prosecutor Belinda Foster said. "He rode around with the boys in the car, saying I'm going to go and kill everybody up there," Foster said. "He went out and reloaded and came back and called 911 and said 'I've shot my wife and her father, come on and get me.' And then we heard more gunshots. It was on the 911 tape." Boyd spent his last hours visiting with family and friends and eating his final meal, a strip steak, baked potato with sour cream, green salad with ranch dressing, a roll with butter and a Pepsi. Among Boyd's visitors Thursday was one of his four grown sons, 35-year-old Kenneth Smith. "He made one mistake and now it's costing him his life," said Smith, who visited Boyd with his wife and two children. "A lot of people get a second chance. I think he deserves a second chance."

Smith's wife witnessed the execution, along with Thomas Curry's niece and her husband. Boyd's attorney, Thomas Maher; a small group of law-enforcement officials; and journalists also watched through the thick, twin glass panes between the viewing room and the death chamber. Maher said: "The execution of Kenneth Boyd has not made this a better or safer world. ... If this 1,000th execution is a milestone, it's a milestone we should all be ashamed of." In his final statement, Boyd spoke to Smith's wife, asking her to "look after my son and my grandchildren." "God bless everybody in here," he added. The execution was the 1,000th in the U.S. since the Supreme Court ruled in 1976 that capital punishment could resume after a 10-year moratorium.

The first execution took place the following year, when Gary Gilmore went before a firing squad in Utah. Execution No. 1,001 happened Friday night, when South Carolina planned to put Shawn Humphries to death for the 1994 murder of a store clerk. Earlier in the week, Boyd told The Associated Press in a prison interview that he wants no part of that infamous distinction.

"I'd hate to be remembered as that," Boyd said Wednesday. "I don't like the idea of being picked as a number." A larger-than-normal crowd of about 150 protesters gathered outside the prison in Raleigh, where officials beefed up security outside the facility. About 120 people gathered at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church for an interfaith prayer service Thursday night, where they sang hymns and listened to Maher talk about Boyd's case. Afterward, they walked from the church to the prison, carrying candles and signs protesting the state's use of the death penalty.

[  myrtlebeachonline.com

2 Dezember 2005
SINGAPORE: Death penalty; Right to life; Rule of law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) writes to you with sadness and regret following the execution of Nguyen Tuong Van at Changi prison in Singapore this morning. It is now known that the Singapore government went ahead with their decision to execute Nguyen, despite pleas from the Australian government and members of the public to grant clemency.

Nguyen was able to meet with his mother one last time yesterday, where they held hands and his mother was able to touch his face and hair. They were not permitted to hug one another however. Then at 6am Singapore time this morning, as supporters gathered in Australia and Singapore to mark Nguyen?s death and protest against Singapore's policy of mandatory capital punishment for drug traffickers, the young man?s life was taken.

The AHRC strongly condemns this senseless, uncompassionate and abhorrent act by the Singapore government. Likewise it voices its full opposition to the death sentence in all cases. The death penalty is the ultimate violation of human rights - the right to life. The Singapore government's decision to carry out this and other executions, is at odds with current global trends to abolish the death penalty. The Singapore government must acknowledge these trends and move to abolish its barbaric use of the death penalty without delay.

[  ahrchk.net

1. Dezember 2005

6 männer wurden im faisalabad bezirksknast hingerichtet. In dem knast sind 2195 gefangene , 45 davon sind zum tod verurteilt.

6 hanged in District Jail Faisalabad

Six murderers including four of the same family were hanged in Faisalabad District Jail on Wednesday morning. The murderers who were hanged included Ghulam Mustafa, Muhammad Ishaq, Manzoor Ahmad, Alias, Javed Iqbal and Muhammad Anwar and they were charged for murdering three persons in 1979 at Kari Valla village in Faisalabad. Out of the six accused, three persons were hanged at 6:30 am and three were at 7:15 am respectively. On the occasion security was beefed-up out side the Jail as strict security measures were taken to avoid happening of any untoward incident.

Prior to the final verdict, the appeal of death sentence was canceled four times. Meanwhile, anti-terrorism court has canceled the death punishment of accused Khan Muhammad. According to Superintendent Ghulam Dastigir, 45 prisoners are facing death sentence. He said that more than 2195 prisoners are present in the prison whereas those who were executed spent the last night praying to God to forgive their sins. Afterwards the bodies of the prisoners were handed over to the relatives. The funeral of the said persons were held in their native town. People screamed on top of their voices after burying the dead bodies.

[  paktribune.com

22 November 2005

erneuter aufruf gegen die bevorstehende hinrichtung des 25 jährigen australiers zu protestieren. Jetzt wurde auch bekannt das die hinrichtung am 2. dezember stattfinden soll.

SINGAPORE: Death penalty; Right to life; Right to fair trial; Rule of law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information confirming that Singapore will go ahead with the execution of an Australian man convicted of drug smuggling. As reported in our previous forwarded appeal on 25 October 2005 (FA-33-2005) and urgent appeal on November 3 (UP-128-2005), Nguyen Tuong Van, 25, was sentenced to death for importing 396 grams of heroin into Singapore. He was convicted under the Misuse of Drugs Act, which carries a mandatory death sentence for anyone found guilty of trafficking in more than 15 grams of heroin.

In October 2004 the Court of Appeal rejected his appeal against the death sentence. On 21 October 2005, his appeal for clemency was rejected by Singapore's President. The Singaporean Foreign Minister then confirmed that the execution of the young man would go ahead, despite pleas for clemency from the Australian government, and from people protesting worldwide. It is now further confirmed that Nguyen will be hanged in Sinapore?s Changi prison on Friday December 2. A letter from the Singapore government confirming the immenent execution was sent to Nguyen's mother. She has now left Australia for Singapore and will be allowed to visit her son in the three days before he is hanged.

Even though Article 6(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) strictly restricts a sentence of death to be imposed only for the "most serious crimes" such as intentional murder, the Singapore government has been using the death penalty for non-violent drug offences. We have previously reported that two Africans were sentenced to death in Singapore on drug trafficking charges (See further: FA-22-2005). Also, in May 2005, a father of two children was hanged amidst the appeals from various human rights organization, including the AHRC, asking for clemency to save his life (for details see: UP-60-2005). There are also a number of other prisoners, including foreign nationals, facing the death penalty in Singapore (please see: UA-24-2003). The AHRC strongly condemns the action of the Singapore government, which is a violation of the right to life, which is one of the most fundamental of human rights. It is also a clear violation of the ICCPR, which Singapore is a state party.

In light of this, and due to the extreme urgency in saving this young man's life, we ask that you please write an appeal letter to the President of Singapore calling for moratorium on Nguyen's execution. Please also urge the Singapore government to abolish the death penalty and, in the meantime, to establish a moratorium on all executions. We also recommend you to write to the embassies of Singapore in your respective country. You can also join the Think Centre's online petition calling for the Singapore government's moratorium on death penalty at: http://www.thinkcentre.org/article.cfm?ArticleID=2657


20. November 2005

ruben cantu wurde am 24. august 1993 wegen eines mordes hingerichtet. Jetzt hat der einzige zeuge im prozeß seine aussage widerrufen und der mitangeklagte, der damals 15 war, hat ausgesagt daß sie an dem abend nicht zusammen waren. Der zeuge gab an daß ihn die polizei erpresste. Er war damals ein illegal in den usa

Investigation Suggests Wrong Man Executed

A decade after Ruben Cantu was executed for capital murder, the only witness to the crime is recanting and his co-defendant says Cantu, then 17, wasn't even with him that night. The victim was shot nine times with a rifle during an attempted robbery before the gunman unloaded more rounds into the only witness.

That witness, Juan Moreno, told the Houston Chronicle for its Sunday editions that Cantu wasn't the killer. Moreno said he only identified him at the 1985 trial because he felt pressured and was afraid of authorities. The doubts now being raised come too late for Cantu. He had long professed his innocence but was executed in Texas on Aug. 24, 1993, at the age of 26. "You've got a 17-year-old who went to his grave for something he did not do. Texas murdered an innocent person," Cantu's co-defendant, David Garza, said.

Garza, who was 15 at the time of the murder, recently signed a sworn affidavit saying he allowed his friend to be accused even though Cantu wasn't with him the night of the killing. The Chronicle reviewed hundreds of court and police documents in its investigation of the case. On the night of the attack, 19-year-old Moreno and his friend, 25-year-old Pedro Gomez were sleeping in a house they were helping build for Moreno's brother. They awoke to a pair of teenagers demanding money, one who was carrying a .22-caliber rifle. Gomez was killed; Moreno was shot but survived.

Moreno was shown a photo of Cantu after rumors at his school that he had been involved, but Moreno didn't identify him as the shooter, the newspaper said. But about four months later, Cantu was involved in a bar shooting that injured an off-duty police officer. Though accusations he shot the officer were dropped, Sgt. Bill Ewell reopened the Gomez case. A bilingual homicide detective was sent to Moreno's home to show him another photo of Cantu. He didn't identify him. The next day, Moreno, then an illegal immigrant, was taken to a police station and again shown Cantu's photo. This time, he picked Cantu out from among five photos, according to an officer's report.

"The police were sure it was (Cantu) because he had hurt a police officer," Moreno said in a recent interview. "They told me they were certain it was him, and that's why I testified." Ewell, now retired, told the Chronicle, "I'm confident the right people were prosecuted." The district attorney who handled the case, Sam D. Millsap Jr., said though that he never should have sought the death penalty in a case based on testimony from an eyewitness who identified a suspect only after police showed him a photo three times.

Miriam Ward, forewoman of the jury that convicted Cantu, said the panel's decision was the best they could do based on the information presented at trial. "With a little extra work, a little extra effort, maybe we'd have gotten the right information," Ward said. "The bottom line is, an innocent person was put to death for it. We all have our finger in that." Since executions resumed in 1982, Texas has executed 355 inmates, according to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

[  news.aol.com

16. November 2005

am 13. november sind zwei männer in gorgan hingerichtet worden die wegen "lavat" ( homosexuelle beziehung) verurteilt waren.


LONDON - Two more young men were hanged in a public square in Iran after being found guilty of "lavat" (a homosexual relationship), according to reports in the semi-official daily newspaper, Kayhan, on November 13. The two men, identified only as Mokhtar N. and Ali A., were aged respectively 24 and 25 years old. They were hanged in public in Shahid Bahonar Square in the northern city of Gorgan. The newspaper said the "criminal past" of the two young men included kidnapping and rape, but the press report made it clear that the "crime" for which they were hanged was "lavat", which means sex between men, or sodomy. Human rights groups point out that Iran often pins false charges of rape, kidnapping, spying, alcoholism and adultery on people it executes, in order to minimize public sympathy for the victims and discourage public protests. The UK LGBT human rights group OutRage! is urging people to email protests to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at ahmadinejad@president.ir.

The previous execution of two teenagers, in July for same-sex acts in the city of Mashhad, provoked an international outcry.

The hard-line government of President Ahmadinejad has vowed to follow a tougher line on the implementation of Islamic law in Iran, including a clampdown on behavior that is deemed immoral and western influenced. Under Iran's Islamic penal code, homosexuality between consenting adults is a capital crime. Police entrap gay men via Internet chat rooms, making rendezvous and then arresting them. Private parties are also raided. Iranian LGBT human rights groups estimate that 4,000 lesbians and gay men have been executed since the Ayatollah seized power in 1979.

"These executions are merely the latest in a blood-stained trail of homophobic murder and mayhem perpetrated by the tyrants in Tehran," said Brett Lock of the LGBT human rights group OutRage!, which campaigns in solidarity with Iranian LGBTs and dissidents. "Without an end to the fundamentalist regime, there can never be justice for gay people, women, trade unionists and minority religions and nationalities," said Lock's OutRage! colleague, Peter Tatchell. Tatchell has urged the international community to break off diplomatic relations with Iran by imposing trade sanctions and giving practical support to the democratic and left opposition inside Iran.

[  outinamerica.com

14. November 2005

2004 wurden 120 männer und 5 frauen zum tod verurteilt. dies ist die niedrigste anzahl von todesurteilen seit 1973. 59 menschen wurden letztes jahr hingerichtet. 22 menschen die in todeszellen inhaftiert waren starben entweder ?an natürlichen ursachen? oder begingen suizid. 107 wurden entweder freigelassen oder die urteile wurden abgeändert. Am 31. dez. 2004 waren 3.315 menschen zum tod verurteilt.

Fewer Inmates on Death Row
Sentencing Options May Be a Factor as Executions Decline

The ranks of people sentenced to death and the number executed declined in 2004 as the nation's death row population kept shrinking, the government reported yesterday. Last year, a dozen states executed 59 prisoners, six fewer than in 2003, according to the Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics.

The report also said 125 people, including five women, who were convicted of murder received a death sentence last year. That was the smallest number since 1973. Last year, 22 death row inmates died of natural causes or committed suicide, while an additional 107 had their sentences commuted, tossed out or overturned. As of Dec. 31, there were 3,315 people on death row, compared with 3,378 a year earlier.

Tracy Snell, one of the report's authors, said the number of prisoners under death sentences has declined four years in a row, the result of a murder rate at its lowest level in 40 years.

One death penalty advocate said the threat of harsh punishment is responsible for that decline. "There are less murders, less murder victims and less death sentences because, in our view, we have been giving this problem the right medicine," said Michael Rushford, president of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation in Sacramento. "Most states have effective habitual-offender laws. These laws take the most likely group of potential capital murderers off the street," said Rushford, whose public interest law group works "to strengthen law enforcement's ability to assure that crime does not pay," according to its Web site. Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center in Washington, said jurors increasingly are reluctant to recommend the death penalty.

He cited recent cases in which death row prisoners have been freed after media or legal investigations; the use of DNA evidence to exonerate those wrongly convicted; and the increased availability of life-without-parole sentences as an alternative to capital punishment. "The thing that stands out to me is the breadth of the decline," said Dieter, whose group has been critical of how the death penalty is applied. "I think if it were just one year or one of those numbers, it would be less consequential. What we're witnessing is a pullback from the death penalty across the country."

Today, 37 of the 38 states with death penalty laws allow juries to consider life without parole as an alternative. That option may come to have a large effect in Texas, which in 2004 executed 23 prisoners, or more than three times as many death row inmates as any other state. A Texas law that took effect Sept. 1 allows capital murder juries to consider life without parole for convicted offenders. California had the most prisoners on death row, with 637 inmates at the end 2004. California, Florida and Texas together account for 44 percent of the nation's death row prisoners, according to the report. In the 2000 U.S. Census, those states made up 25 percent of the U.S. population.

[  washingtonpost.com

31. Oktober 2005

todesurteil gegen zwei männer die 2001 vier journalisten ermordet haben sollen. Ein dritter wurde bereits zum tod verueteilt.

2001 journalist killings: Two more Afghans sentenced to death

KABUL: Two more men were sentenced to death last week for killing four journalists who entered Afghanistan to cover the 2001 toppling of the fundamentalist Taliban regime, a court official said Sunday. A third man has already been given the death sentence for the murders of the journalists ? an Afghan, an Australian, an Italian and a Spaniard.. A primary court in the capital Kabul sentenced brothers Zar Jan and Abdul Wahid last week but they can still appeal, primary court director Abdul Basit Bakhtiari told AFP. The sentences have to be approved by higher courts and President Hamid Karzai.

Courts have already handed down the same sentence on a third man, Raza Khan, for the November 2001 murders days after the Taliban were overthrown in an operation led by the United States. The journalists had crossed into Afghanistan from Pakistan and were travelling by road to Kabul when they were stopped about 90 kilometres (56 miles) from the capital by armed men claiming to be Taliban. They were killed and their bodies left by the roadside. The only woman in the group, Italian Maria Grazia Cutuli, was ?first raped and then killed by the armed men and her ears and nose were cut off,? Bakhtiari said. The other journalists were Australian cameraman Harry Burton, Afghan photographer Azizullah Haidari and Spaniard Julio Fuentes.

Six other members of the criminal gang involved in the killings have been sentenced to between 18 and 20 years in jail for highway robbery and other crimes, but not for the murders of the journalists, Bakhtiari said. Five of the sentences were delivered last week.Journalists streamed into Afghanistan to cover the US-led invasion that toppled the Taliban after they failed to hand over Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for the September 11, 2001 suicide attacks on New York and Washington which killed about 3,000 people. afp

[  dailytimes.com.pk

25 Oktober 2005

zwei artikel über die bevorstehnde hinrichtung eines 25 jährigen australischen mannes in singapore. Zum tod verurteilt wurde der mann im märz 2004 wegen versuchten drogenschmuggel .

SINGAPORE: Death penalty; Right to fair trial; Rule of law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information from the Amnesty International regarding an Australian national named Van Tuong NGUYEN (25), who has been charged with the death penalty and could be hanged very soon.

According to the information we have received, Van Tuong Nguyen was convicted for drug trafficking and his appeal for clemency was rejected by the President on 21 October and he is now facing imminent execution. Although a date has not yet been announced, it is likely the hanging will be carried out within weeks. Even though Article 6(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) strictly restricts a sentence of death to be imposed only for the "most serious crimes" such as intentional murder, the Singapore government have been using the death penalty for non-violent drug offences. We have previously reported that two Africans were sentenced to death in Singapore on drug trafficking charges (See further: FA-22-2005). Also, in May 2005, a father of two children was hanged amidst the appeals from various human rights organization, including the AHRC, asking clemency to save his life(for details see: UP-60-2005). There are a number of prisoners, including foreign nationals, facing the death penalty in Singapore (please see: UA-24-2003), however, the government has continued to carry out punishment instead of addressing these problem. The AHRC strongly condemns that such action of the Singapore government is a violation of the right to life which is one of the most fundamental of human rights. It is also a clear violation of the ICCPR which Singapore is a state party.

Please send an appeal letter to the President of Singapore calling for moratorium on Van Tuong Nguyen's execution. Please also urge the Singapore government to abolish the death penalty and, in the meantime, to establish a moratorium on all executions. We also recommend you to write to the embassies of Singapore in your respective country. You can also join the Think Centre's online petition calling for the Singapore government's moratorium on death penalty at:[  thinkcentre.org

[  ahrchk.net

Singapore: Imminent Execution: Van Tuong NGUYEN (m), Australian national

PUBLIC AI Index: ASA 36/003/2005
24 October 2005
UA 279/05 Imminent Execution
SINGAPORE Van Tuong NGUYEN (m), aged 25, Australian national

Australian national Van Tuong Nguyen, who has been condemned to death in Singapore, had his appeal for clemency rejected by the President on 21 October, and is now facing imminent execution. A date has not yet been announced, although the hanging is likely to be carried out within weeks. An Australian of Vietnamese origin, Van Tuong Nguyen was arrested at Singapore's Changi airport in transit from Cambodia to Australia in December 2002, after police found a package of heroin strapped to his back and a second package in his backpack.

In March 2004 Van Tuong Nguyen, a former salesman, was sentenced to death for importing 396.2 grams of heroin into Singapore. He was convicted under the Misuse of Drugs Act, which carries a mandatory death sentence for anyone found guilty of trafficking in more than 15 grams of heroin. In October 2004 the Court of Appeal rejected his appeal against the death sentence. Van Tuong Nguyen, who had no previous criminal record, was born in a refugee camp in Thailand and moved to Australia with his mother and twin brother when he was six months old. He told investigating officers that he had agreed to carry the drugs in order to pay off debts owed by his twin brother. He said he did not know how much he was being paid for the trip. It was his first trip outside Australia. Since his arrest he has shown remorse and cooperated fully with the authorities. The Australian Federal Police have confirmed that, while in custody, Van Tuong Nguyen assisted their investigation into the international drugs syndicate for which he had worked.


There is usually very little public debate in Singapore about the death penalty, partly as a result of tight government controls on the press and civil society organisations. However, the case earlier this year of Shanmugam s/o Murugesu, who was sentenced to death after he was found in possession of just over one kilogram of cannabis, sparked unprecedented public discussion. In April and May, local activists organised a public forum, petitions, vigils and other events to campaign for Shanmugam's life to be spared, and to raise awareness in Singapore about the cruel and arbitrary nature of the death penalty. The authorities refused to allow an Amnesty International representative who attended the public forum to address the meeting. Shanmugam was hanged on 13 May. His lawyer was reportedly subjected to attacks on his character in government-controlled newspapers over his work on the case.

In April, the Singapore Law Society Gazette published a commentary on Van Tuong Nguyen's Appeal Court decision, arguing that there was "light on the path" because "it is now open to an accused to show ... that a mandatory death sentence is cruel and inhuman punishment under customary international law". Singapore, with a population of just over four million, has the highest per capita execution rate in the world. More than 420 people have been executed since 1991, the majority for drug trafficking. The Singapore government has consistently maintained that the death penalty is not a human rights issue. The Misuse of Drugs Act provides for a mandatory death sentence for at least 20 different offences and contains a series of presumptions which shift the burden of proof from the prosecution to the defence. Prisoners facing execution may be granted clemency by the President, but this is extremely rare.

Amnesty International opposes the death penalty in all cases as a violation of one of the most fundamental of human rights: the right to life. It is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment and there is no escaping the risk of error, which can lead to the execution of an innocent person. The UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions has called for the death penalty to be eliminated for drug-related offences. In April 2005, the UN Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) renewed calls upon all states that retain the death penalty to abolish it completely and, in the meantime, to establish a moratorium on executions.

[  amnesty.org

10. Oktober 2005

pressemitteilung von amnesty zum internationalen tag gegen die todesstrafe

World Day Against the Death Penalty

Today Amnesty International marks the World Day Against the Death Penalty 2005 by calling on all African states to abolish the death penalty.

The World Day Against the Death Penalty provides an opportunity to mobilise against capital punishment in the continent. People from many countries including Benin, Congo, DRC, Mali, Morocco, Sierra Leone, South Africa and Uganda as well as Austria, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Norway, Puerto Rico, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA will be involved in the event through demonstrations, petitions, concerts and televised debates. A petition to be signed by people around the world will be presented to Heads of State in Africa following the World Day.

The focus of the World Day Against the Death Penalty on 10 October this year is on Africa as a continent on the road to abolition. Despite the numerous human rights problems that beset the region, recent developments show a growing trend towards abolition among African countries. Senegal abolished the death penalty for all crimes in December 2004 and Liberia in September 2005. Thirteen of the continent?s 53 states have permanently abolished the death penalty and another 20 countries no longer carry out executions. Thus a majority of African countries have abandoned using this cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment. Amnesty International welcomes the recent abolition of the death penalty for all crimes by Senegal and Liberia and the October 2004 report of the National Study Group on the Death Penalty, initiated by President Olusegun Obasanjo of Nigeria, which recommended a moratorium on executions until the justice system could guarantee fair trials and due process.

Other welcome developments include a statement by President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya during the UN Commission on Human Rights in March 2005 that Kenya was ?committed to abolishing the death penalty? and the authorities were taking steps to ?commute all death penalties to life imprisonment?. Also welcome was the recent ruling by the Ugandan Constitutional Court in favour of ending mandatory death sentences for certain crimes. Benin and Morocco both have moratoria on executions: in Morocco abolition of the death penalty features among the issues being considered in current debates on legal reform and in Benin a draft bill to reform the penal code will be debated in parliament this month. Amnesty International urges the Benin Government to include a provision outlawing the death penalty.

While progress has been made towards abolition in Africa there is still a lot of work to be done. At least 200 people, including child offenders, have been executed since 1997 in the Democratic Republic of Congo alone, most following trials in which the fundamental standards for fair trial were not respected. A moratorium instituted in 1999 was suspended in 2002. In July 2005, Sudan adopted an interim constitution which contained a provision for the execution of child offenders. A moratorium on executions in Mali which lapsed in 2004 has yet to be renewed and courts continue to pass death sentences.

The World Day is organised by the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty (WCADP) a coalition of over 38 human rights organisations, including Amnesty International, bar associations, trade unions and local and regional authorities which have joined together in an effort to rid the world of the death penalty. The World Day will be followed by the Cities for Life event which takes place on 30 November. Cities for Life is an annual event involving the illumination of public buildings or alternative places that symbolically represent the city in cities and towns around the world, as an affirmation of the value of life and a sign of opposition to the death penalty. Cities for Life is organized by the Rome-based Community of Sant Egidio, with the endorsement of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty.

[  amnesty.org

23. September 2005

nach den protesten der fraternal order of police hat ein richter in alabama einen 27 jährigen mann entgegen dem urteil der geschworenen ( lebenslänglich ohne aussicht auf entlassung) zum tod verurteilt

Justice Prevails: Killer of Three Alabama Officers Receives Death Penalty

Chuck Canterbury, national president of the Fraternal Order of Police, welcomed today's news that Kerry Spencer, convicted of murdering three law enforcement officers in Alabama last summer, was sentenced to death."I was very pleased to receive a letter by fax today from Troy King, the Attorney General of the State of Alabama, which informed me of the judge's decision to impose the death penalty on Spencer and which thanked the F.O.P. for its support for a just result in this case," Canterbury said.

On June 17, 2004, Kerry Spencer, who admitted selling as much as $3,000 worth of crack a day from a filthy apartment in a poor neighborhood of Birmingham, Ala., opened fire at close range with an automatic SKS Chinese assault rifle on four officers that arrived at the apartment to arrest his friend. He wounded one officer and killed three others -- Carlos Owen, Harley Chisholm III and Charles Robert Bennett. He confessed to the murders and was convicted by a jury of three counts of capital murder and one count of attempted murder of a police officer. The jury recommended a sentence of life without parole. Under Alabama law, a judge can accept the jury's verdict or override it.

"In this case, the law enforcement officers felt that the jury's verdict was insufficient to the cause justice," Canterbury explained. "Three men, good, veteran officers were murdered in cold-blood by a coward who surrendered to the tactical unit that responded because he was afraid getting shot himself. The jury's sentencing recommendation was not good enough."

The delegates at the F.O.P.'s 57th Biennial National Conference in New Orleans, La., adopted a formal resolution which called on the circuit judge in the case to override the jury's recommendation and impose a sentence of death. Today, Judge C. Tommy Nails did just that.

"I strongly agree with State Attorney General Troy King's comments on today decision: 'This ruling reflects Alabama's resolve to stand up for those who step into harm's way every day to keep the rest of us safe. Criminals know, because of this decision, that if they take the lives of law enforcement, they will pay with their own,'" Canterbury said. "I salute Attorney General King and Judge Nails for working so hard to see justice done in this case. My heart goes out to the families of the slain officers and my thoughts and prayers are with all of the men and women in blue who put their lives on the line every day on every shift to keep all of us safe from men like Kerry Spencer."

The Fraternal Order of Police is the largest law enforcement labor organization in the United States, with more than 321,000 members.

[  releases.usnewswire.com

[  Police union urges death penalty for killer of three officers / 6. Sep.05

23. September 2005

das verfassungsgericht hat zusätze zur verfassung bezüglich der abschaffung der todesstrafe genehmigt. Zwar wurde die todesstrafe bereits 1996 abgeschafft allerdings ohne dieses auch in die verfassung aufzunehmen. anwälte hatten immer wieder darauf hingewiesen dass dies erlaube die todesstrafe zu bestimmten momenten z.b. in kriegszeiten auszuüben.

Moldovan Constitutional Court approves amendments to abolich death penalty

The Moldovan Constitutional Court has approved constitutional amendments, which abolish the death penalty.The abolition of the death penalty is an obligatory condition of the Moldovan accession to the European Union, which is a priority of the Moldovan foreign policy, a source in the Constitutional Court press service said.Moldova abolished the death penalty before its accession to the Council of Europe in 1996, and the new Criminal Code saying nothing about the death penalty. However, the abolition was not legalized in the constitution, which, in the opinion of lawyers, allowed for death penalties on special occasions like wartime.Not a single death sentence was passed in independent Moldova, and not a single prisoner was executed. The republic has 69 lifetime inmates convicted for serial murders and other grave crimes.

[  tass.ru

22. September 2005

eine neue studie zur todesstrafe in kalifornien kam zu dem ergebnis, dass verdächtige die weiße menschen getötet haben sollen, die wahrscheinlichkeit einer todesstrafe 4 mal höher ist wie in fällen wo das opfer hispanic war und dreimal höher in den fällen wo das opfer afroamerikanisch war.1987 entschied das oberste gericht der usa dass über einen fall in georgia urteilte,das solche studienkeine grundlage sind für ein urteil zu widerrufen es sei den das "rassistische voreingenommenheit durch einen beschuldigten individual bewiesen werden kann".

Study Finds Racial Imbalance on Death Row

More condemned men and women are on California's death row for killing whites than for murdering people of any other race, despite there being more black and Hispanic murder victims, according to a new study. The study, to be published in the Santa Clara Law Review, tallied the races of California homicide victims in the 1990s.It concluded suspects who murdered whites were almost four times more likely to be sentenced to death than those who killed Hispanics, and three times more likely to be sentenced to death than those who killed blacks."To put it bluntly, there's apparently different values being placed on victims from different racial and ethnic groups," said Northeastern University criminal justice professor Glenn Pierce, a co-author of the study. "That's what the pattern would suggest."

When it came to the race of the defendant, the study concluded race did not contribute significantly to whether prosecutors sought the death penalty or jurors recommended death.Instead, it was the race of the victim that was paramount.Pierce said his conclusions in "The Impact of Legally Inappropriate Factors on Death Sentencing for California Homicides, 1990-1999" mirrored studies in other states.The study focused on 263 California death sentences in the 1990s. There were 302 death sentences issued during that time, but the study eliminated 39 cases that involved multiple victims of different races or ethnic groups.

Of the 263 sentences, 142 were handed down for killing whites, 44 for killing blacks, 52 for killing Hispanics and 25 for killing victims of other races.During the same period, killed were 8,136 whites, 9,338 blacks, 14,089 Hispanics and 2,037 victims of other races.The study also noted that some counties, particularly rural ones, issued death sentences disproportionately to metropolitan areas.

Rural Kern County, for example, issued 10 death sentences in the 1990s for 661 murders. San Francisco had 910 murders, but prosecutors there never sought the death penalty."This study forced the people in California to confront the unfairness of how the death penalty is applied in this state," said Ellen Kreitzberg, a Santa Clara University professor and director of its Death Penalty College. "The decision of who will live and who will die in California turns on arbitrary and unlawful factors such as the race and ethnicity of the murder victim or the location where the murder was committed."

Kent Scheidegger, director of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, noted that the study showed California did not racially discriminate against murder defendants. He called that "an accomplishment to be celebrated.""It's not racial prejudice. It's the choice of the voters in a county," Scheidegger said. "The voters of Kern elect a harsher DA. The voters in San Francisco select a DA who doesn't do the death penalty at all. That's democracy."In 1987, the U.S. Supreme Court, ruling in a Georgia case, said studies like California's were not grounds for reversing death cases, unless racial bias could be proven by an individual defendant.California has 645 inmates on death row. It has executed 11 people since reinstating the death penalty in 1977.

[  yahoo.com

17. September 2005

für das schmuggeln von 927 gr. cannabis ( dadah) wurde ein mann aus indonesien zum tod verurteilt

Malaysia issues death sentence for Acehnese drug trafficker

A Malaysian court has sentenced an Indonesian man to death for trafficking cannabis.Mardani Hussin, 29, a labourer from Aceh province, is reported to have entered Malaysia without a valid permit in April, 2002, and committed the offence six months later."Many of your fellow countrymen came here to earn a proper living," High Court judge Abdull Hamid Embong was quoted as telling him. "I am sure they are ashamed of your act."

Mardani was charged with trafficking 927 grams of cannabis in the capital on October 22, 2002.He was riding on a motorcycle when he was stopped by police who searched him and seized a parcel with the drug.Drug-trafficking in Malaysia carries a mandatory death penalty, and the country has executed 229 people for the offence in the past 30 years.

[  abc.net.au

Indonesian gets death for dadah trafficking

"You should be ashamed of yourself and apologise to your country and countrymen who come here to find a job and earn an income legally."

High Court judge Datuk Abdull Hamid Embong said this to Mardani Hussin, 29, an Indonesian charged with trafficking in 927g of cannabis. "You should also apologise to Malaysians for being involved in dadah," he said. "You entered Malaysia illegally in February 2002 and within eight months you were caught with the drug." In sentencing Mardani to death, Abdull Hamid said there was only one sentence for dadah trafficking. Mardani looked stunned and cried after Abdull Hamid passed the sentence. Mardani, a labourer from Aceh, was charged with trafficking the drug in Jalan Raja Mahmud, Kampung Baru here about 9.30pm on Oct 22, 2002.

The seven-day trial began on Sept 8 and the prosecution called six witnesses. Earlier, counsel Ameenud-din Ibrahim told the court that Mardani wished to apologise to the court and the public.

Deputy public prosecutor Mohd Abazafree Mohd Abbas prosecuted. Abdull Hamid in convicting Mardani said the court could not accept his evidence. "It failed to create doubts to the prosecution?s case and hence the court convicts you." Abdull Hamid, in his grounds of judgment, said it was "illogical" that Mardani did not attempt to deny that the package containing the cannabis was his, after he was caught by the police. "If he had claimed the package belonged to a friend by the name of Roy who wanted it to be taken to his friend Md Nor, he should have quickly informed the police when he was arrested." Mardani was jailed for four months in Oct 2002 by the magistrate?s court for not having a passport.

[  nst.com.my

9. September 2005

erneut wurden 3 männer wegen ihrer angeblichen mitgliedschaft in der democratic party of iranian kurdistan zum tod verurteilt.

KDPI: Three Kurdish political detainees in Iran sentenced to death

After execution of political detainee Ismail Mohammadi on 4 September 2005, three other political prisoners are sentenced to death by the regime of Islamic Republic of Iran. The below named prisoners, are charged for their support of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan.

They are Abubakr Mirza Ghaderi, the son of Mohammad Saleh, who is married and is a father of two. Osman Mirza Ghaderi, the son of Mohammad Saleh, who is married and has one child. Ghader Ahmadi, the son of Abdulrahman, who is married and is a father of three. They are all residents of the Kurdish city of Bokan. All the victims are charged for their support of Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan The victims are arrested during 2005 and are sentenced to death in the prison of Urmieh. The capital punishment will be implemented by the end of September. Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan condemns the brutal judgment of the Islamic republic of Iran. We call all international community, human rights organisations to make an urgent action in order to abandon the killing of these innocent people.

[  kurdmedia.com

2. September 2005

3 männer wurden am 1. september hingerichtet. Es waren die ersten hinrichtungen seit dem sturz von saddam hussein.

3 hanged as Iraq resumes death penalty enforcement

The transitional Iraqi government executed three convicted murderers yesterday morning in the first application of the death penalty since the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime.Bayan Ahmed Said, Uday Dawood Salman, and Dhahar Jasim Hassan were hanged yesterday morning in Baghdad, Laith Kubba, a government spokesman, told reporters. He did not disclose their ages.The men were found guilty of murder, rape, and kidnapping in southeastern Iraq. Proponents of Iraq's government hailed the executions as a message to criminals throughout Iraq and a comfort for the victims' relatives.

''Let those terrorists know that there will be decisive laws waiting to punish them if they try to kill innocent Iraqis," said Abbas Bayati, a Shi'ite legislator. ''The hearts of many families who had their loved ones killed for no reason will be healed today."European governments had hoped Iraq would abolish the death penalty, which many countries view as a violation of human rights.Executions, mostly of political opponents, were common under Hussein.

Death-penalty opponents suggested the hangings would hurt US efforts to garner international support for the nascent Iraqi government.''It's going to be a problem for our allies when a US-supported government in Iraq executes people," said David Elliot, spokesman for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty, a Washington-based organization.Some Iraqis questioned Iraq's legal system, which they said lacked the transparency to guard against abuse and may not be capable of determining guilt or innocence beyond doubt.

[  boston.com

25. August 2005

ein mann der am 27. august 2003 von der polizei illegal verhaftet und dann 4 tage gefoltert wurde, ist wegen mord zum tod verurteilt worden.

PHILIPPINES: Illegal arrest and detention; Torture; Death Penalty; Rule of law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information from the Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) in Luzon that a person who was illegally arrested, detained and tortured by the military in San Narciso, Quezon, Luzon on 27 August 2003 was convicted and sentenced to death. The victim, Generoso Rolida, was charged for murder before a local court in Gumaca Quezon.

Under the Philippine Republic Act 7659 or the Death Penalty Law, murder is considered a heinous crime punishable by death. The Philippines is one of the countries in Asia that imposes capital punishment as part of its justice system. Although there is a pending bill in the Philippines Congress to repeal or abolish the death penalty, this has not yet been approved.


*Name of convicted person:* Generoso Rolida *Date and place of arrest:* 27 August 2003, in Barangay Vigo Central, San Narciso, Quezon *Alleged perpetrators:* 74th Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army *Court that handed down the conviction:* Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Gumaca, Quezon, Luzon

Background information:

On the morning of 27 August 2003, Generoso Rolida and his family were on their way home to Barangay Vigo Central, San Narciso, Quezon when he was arrested by elements of the 74th Infantry Battalion (IB), Philippine Army. The military tagged him as a sympathiser and a member of the New People?s Army (NPA). He was arrested without any warrant.

According to Rolida, the soldiers searched his house without showing any warrant. When the soldiers found a half sack of rice inside his house, they insinuated that the rice was for the rebels and that he was providing goods and logistics to them. Rolida was later taken to the 74th IB camp in Mulanay, Quezon.

While in detention, Rolida said he was tortured for four days. During the custodial investigation, the soldiers, who were investigating him, repeatedly punched him in different parts of his body. They threatened that he would be buried alive and then they as hogtied him to a wooden post. He was forced but refused to serve as a guide during a military operation to locate NPA camps.

It was only on 31 August 2003 that elements of the Army?s 74th IB took him to a local Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters. When they arrived at the headquarters, Rolida said a police officer on-duty asked the soldiers for a legal document to warrant his detention, but this they could not do. According to Rolida, he heard one of the soldiers say ?all they knew that he (referring to Rolida) must be guilty of something.? It was on his fourth day of detention at the Quezon Provincial Jail (QPJ) in Lucena City, that Rolida learned that he had been charged with murder for an alleged killing of a member of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU) in General Luna, Quezon.

Rolida?s defense was rested without any documentary evidence and only his lone testimony stood as his defense before the Court. This treatment by the court of Rolida may have violated his right for a fair trial, and may have contributed to his unwarranted conviction. Given the severity of the case, the arrest, detention and judicial errors were crucial in the final outcome.

Rolida was charged with murder, a crime punishable by death under the law (Republic Act No. 7659). Yet capital punishment repudiates the spirit of restorative justice behind the modern penal system that is to reform and rehabilitate offenders.

[  ahrchk.net

17. August 2005

seit der wiedereinführung der todesstrafe wurden in 34 fällen todesurteile gefällt.jetzt wurde in einem der fälle die todesurteile gegen drei männer vom ministerpräsidenten bestätigt.

3 Set to Hang as Executions Return to Iraq

Three men convicted of dozens of rapes, kidnappings and killings in the southern city of Kut, in one case displaying the eyeballs of an Iraqi soldier to obtain payment for his murder, will be put to death by hanging in the first execution by Iraq's civilian courts since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari said Tuesday.The case against the men, who acted in concert, is one of 34 in which death sentences have been handed down since the death penalty was reinstated in Iraq in August 2004. It is the first case to emerge from a mandatory review by an appeals court and be sent to Mr. Jaafari and a three-member council headed by President Jalal Talabani. The council must approve the execution before it can take place.

The combination of a shaky government eager to show that it is taking steps against terrorism and overwhelming public support for the death penalty here could make the Kut case the first of many executions in Iraq. That could include Mr. Hussein's. He is expected to go on trial within the next two months before a special tribunal for crimes against humanity."We know that public opinion is eagerly waiting for this," said Ghadanfar Hamood al-Jasim, the chief general prosecutor of Iraq, of the Kut case, which his office oversaw. "They are in pain and they are waiting for justice to take its course."

That was certainly true of the families of three police officers who were among those killed by the three men, who in May confessed to 63 crimes, an unknown number of them killings.Mr. Jasim said that beyond the issue of retribution, he believed that the reinstatement of the death penalty would be a deterrent in a country where violence has reached such a high level. "It will help stabilize the security situation," he said.But human rights organizations immediately questioned that assertion, as well as the motives of the Jaafari government in announcing the executions so soon after the embarrassing political debacle of Monday night, in which negotiators failed to agree on a new Iraqi constitution and the National Assembly hastily voted to extend the talks for a week just minutes before the government would have been dissolved.

Human rights advocates say that Iraq's legal system is often too flimsy to be fair. Beatings and other abuses are routinely used to produce confessions. Defendants see their lawyers rarely, or not at all, before trial. Judges are often under tremendous pressure to impose the death penalty. And, eager to strike back at insurgent attackers, Iraqi security forces have cast wide nets to round up suspects, increasing the risk that innocents will be put to death."There are too many things that can go wrong," said Joe Stork, deputy director of the Middle East Division for the group Human Rights Watch in Washington, D.C.

Immediate questions have arisen in the Kut trial, where at least three family members identified the defendants by saying that they had seen at least some of them confess to the killings on television. Mr. Jasim acknowledged that the Interior Ministry, over Justice Ministry objections, regularly puts defendants on a popular television program that shows criminals confessing to crimes before trial, often with visible bruises on their faces.Mr. Jasim said that once the defendants are on trial, they always repudiate their televised confessions, and judges are obliged to ignore what they have seen outside the courtroom. "We don't consider that as evidence," Mr. Jasim said.

The death penalty has enormous resonance in Iraq, where Mr. Hussein set up special courts to issue death sentences with no appeal. The executions were generally carried out at the clanging metal gallows of Abu Ghraib prison. Iraqi law still specifies that the death penalty is carried out by hanging for civilians and firing squad for soldiers, said Jaafar Nasser Hussain, an Iraqi Supreme Court justice.After the 2003 invasion, the death penalty was suspended by the American-led administration in Iraq. But in August 2004, Prime Minister Ayad Allawi reinstated it.The Kut trial was broadcast on national television. The defendants stood in a pen at the center of the room, their eyes downcast. The victims relatives sat along a side wall. Many held photographs of the dead officers. Security guards in bulletproof vests stood near the doors.

One of the defendants, a taxi driver, Bayan Ahmed Said, described how he had cut out the eyes of one of the victims and then put them in his pocket in order to take them to a sheik who he said had ordered the murders.The other two defendants were a builder and a butcher.The men also were convicted of raping women, beheading them afterward and throwing the bodies into a river.Even worse cases are waiting to be tried, said Mr. Jasim, the prosecutor. A man in Mosul is accused of 113 killings, he said, offering no full explanation for where the barbarity has come from since the Americans invaded in 2003. "We didn't know such crimes before," he said.

But there is worry among many human rights groups that, in the confusion of large-scale arrests and the intense public pressure for convictions in cases of atrocity, innocent people will be put to death. The biggest threat, they argued, were forced confessions in police custody.Researchers for Human Rights Watch interviewed 90 detainees during four months in 2004. Seventy-two of them said they had been ill-treated in custody.

There are other problems. Iraqi law, like American, requires that defendants be brought before a judge within 24 hours of their arrest, but they rarely are, human rights advocates said.Still, the current system is widely considered a vast improvement from the time of Mr. Hussein. Though thousands of families were destroyed in his system, few equate it with today's proposed executions, human rights advocates said.Aiad Jamal al-Din, a Shiite intellectual who supports the death penalty, said Iraqis even wanted public executions. He gave a succinct explanation for the popular support for the death penalty: "This is a war field. In every war, innocent people fall down."

[  nytimes.com

14. August 2005

ein bericht über die hinrichtung von nicht schuldigen menschen. Zur zeit werden die fälle von zwei hingerichteten männer neu untersucht .

execution of the innocent

Putting the death penalty on trial

Nine hundred and seventy-two men and women have been executed in states with the death penalty since 1976. Last month one of them, Larry Griffin of St. Louis, got a chance at a post-mortem reprieve.

Found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, he could soon be found innocent beyond the grave. Missouri killed him by lethal injection at the Potosi Correctional Center in 1995.This remarkable case bears watching. It could not only affect the 52 inmates currently on death row in Missouri, but all 3,415 death row inmates in the nation. Griffin’s case is being reopened 25 years after he was accused of the drive-by murder he said he didn’t commit. Victims-rights groups should want to know what happens because they most of all should want to see the guilty person — not just anyone — punished for violent crimes.

Evidence provided by the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund suggests that not only was Griffin innocent of the crime that sent him to death row, but he wasn’t even there at the time.The probe into the Griffin case was conducted over a year and was overseen by University of Michigan law professor Samuel Gross, who worked with a team of civil rights investigators in other states. Based on the review of the case, the team presented a file that led St. Louis Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce to reopen the case for further investigation.Besides comments from a new witness who says Griffin wasn’t there, the civil rights investigators provided Joyce with the names of three men believed to be responsible for the drive-by killing.

“The evidence of Larry Griffin’s innocence is much stronger than the evidence we have on the identity of the actual killers,” Gross said. “If she (Joyce) concludes that Larry Griffin is innocent, I have no doubt that she will say so.”Missouri is a conservative state with an ambitious and conservative Republican governor who supports capital punishment. Nevertheless, Joyce deserves plaudits for taking this courageous and legally responsible stand.A re-examination of this case will not bring Griffin back to life, obviously, but it may result in clearing his name and bringing the real killers of 19-year-old Quintin Moss to justice.One problem with the death penalty is that it is irreversible. When mistakes are made, there really is no way to correct them. Missouri may have to admit that it killed the wrong man. If so, an apology won’t be enough.

“This may encourage other prosecutors and other government officials to look seriously at cases where errors may have been made,” Gross said. It must. Execution is cruel and unusual punishment that doesn’t reduce violent crime.This case is the best argument for a moratorium on executions in Missouri. Illinois did that in 2000 when then-Gov. George Ryan commuted the sentences of 167 death row inmates after appeals courts exonerated 13 inmates on death row. Ryan used to support the death penalty but evidence of flaws in the system caused him to insist on a review of capital cases.U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens spoke recently at an American Bar Association meeting where he raised concerns about jury prejudice, prosecutorial errors and “special risks of unfairness” in the appellate process.

Stevens also said DNA evidence has shown “that a substantial number of death sentences have been imposed erroneously.” He added, “It indicates that there must be some serious flaws in our administration of criminal justice.” Indeed.If DNA evidence can be used to close cold cases, some decades old in Kansas City, why shouldn’t it be called upon in capital cases where such forensic advances are a matter of life and death for the accused? “Of course Larry Griffin was no angel,” Gross said. “One of the real criminals in this case went on to a prolific career as a hitman and killed, by his own admission, 11 people.” The three men believed to be the real killers are currently serving life sentences for other murders in Missouri.

In March, the Supreme Court wisely determined that executing persons under age 18 is unconstitutional. And in June, the court overturned death sentences of four inmates. The court is moving in the proper direction, but that could change with the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.While so many people are debating how this court defines the beginning of life in the abortion debate, they must also ponder how it could redefine the end of life on death row.Griffin is African-American. Most death-row inmates — and victims — aren’t. Of the 3,415 inmates on death row as of July 1, 1,553 are white, 1,432 are black, 350 are Hispanic, 40 are Native American and 39 are Asian. Only 54 are women.

Missouri ranks fourth in the nation (Texas is No. 1) in executions. This is nothing to be proud of. Neither is the possibility that Missouri killed a man who maintained his innocence until his dying breath and who maybe was telling the truth.

[  centredaily.com

13. August 2005

ein richter in texas hat gegen die entscheidung der geschworenen ein todesurteil gefällt.

JUDGE goes against jury, gives death penalty in 6 slayings

A judge ordered a death sentence Friday for a man convicted of gunning down six members of his girlfriend's family at their rural home, a ruling that rejected the jury's recommendation that the killer's life be spared. Circuit Judge Ed McFerrin imposed the sentence on Westley Devon Harris, 25, who was convicted of capital murder in the 2002 slaughter at Rutledge.

"This was not an easy decision because of my personal beliefs," said McFerrin, who has never before imposed the death penalty.Attorney General Troy King had called the killings an "unspeakable horror" and urged McFerrin not to feel bound by the jury's 7-5 vote recommending life without parole."It's obvious to me that Judge McFerrin struggled with this legally and has chosen to put aside his personal convictions to rule with the law," King said.

[  decaturdaily.com

06. August 2005

ein mann dessen verurteilung zur todesstrafe 2002 grundlage für das urteil des supreme court war, das menschen die "mental zurückgeblieben sind" ( dabei wurde sein iq mit 59 angegeben) nicht hingerichtet werden, soll jetzt einen iq von 74 haben und soll hingerichtet werden.

Murderer declared intelligent enough for death row

A murderer who escaped death row because he was considered too retarded is now to be executed after a jury concluded that he was intelligent enough to receive the death penalty.

The defence had claimed that it was preparing for the case itself that had caused the defendant's IQ to rise. In 2002, the Supreme Court made a landmark ruling in the case of Daryl Atkins, declaring that executing the mentally retarded was unconstitutional.Yesterday, after 13 hours' deliberation, the jury, in Yorktown, Virginia, concluded that Atkins was not mentally retarded. He will be executed later this year.

Atkins, 27, was convicted for the 1996 murder of Eric Nesbitt, a 21-year-old airman, shooting him eight times after forcing him to withdraw money from a cash machine in Virginia.The jury had to consider whether his IQ was less than 70, the level below which Virginia recognised someone as retarded, or 70 or above, qualifying him for death by lethal injection.Prosecution lawyers argued that Atkins's IQ had risen sharply since he was considered to be retarded.

In 2002, Atkins scored 59 in an IQ test. But when the same clinical psychologist conducted a second test for the defence last year, the score had risen to 74. A recent test for the prosecution put it at 76.Dr Evan Nelson, the psychologist who tested Atkins in 1998 and 2004, said the recent scores should be discounted because they were the result of "a forced march towards increased mental stimulation" provided by the case.The prosecutors argued that the circumstances of Atkins's crime proved that he had never been retarded.

[  telegraph.co.uk

05. August 2005

zum ersten mal wurde ein konzert gegen die todesstrafe erlaubt, allerdings dürfen keine bilder des kürzlich hingerichteten shanmugam murugesu gezeigt werden.

SINGAPORE'S anti-death penalty concert to go ahead

Police have approved Singapore's first concert against the death penalty but demanded that no posters bearing the face of a recently hanged Indian origin drug trafficker would be displayed, organisers said. The face of Shanmugam Murugesu was prohibited from appearing on any materials promoting or at the indoor concert dubbed "Hung At Dawn: Local Bands Remember Sam".

The event, scheduled Friday, has been organised by musicians from Singapore and Malaysia in addition to the Think Centre, an activist group. Centre president Sinapan Samydorai said he could not understand the logic behind the ban on Shanmugam's photographs.Posters with Shanmugam's picture that were previously put up have been pulled down."This is a concert campaigning against the death penalty," Samydorai said. "We are not glorifying him as a drug trafficker but as a symbol of our anti-death penalty stand."

Shanmugam was hanged May 13 for trafficking in more than 500 gm of cannabis after a flurry of last-ditch appeals by his lawyer, an overnight vigil by his mother and twin sons and an online petition drive. The police do not want a convicted drug trafficker glorified, said assistant superintendent Victor Keong. The concert was approved on the condition the event and associated efforts, be they in the form of banners, posters, T-shirts or any paraphernalia, do not glorify people who have been tried and convicted by the courts, he added.

Another "Hung At Dawn" concert is scheduled for Aug 18 and Lin Shin Yun, one of the organisers, said another attempt may be used to use Shanmugam's image again. Human rights group Amnesty International has said the city-state has one of the highest incidences of the death penalty and its drug laws are among the world's harshest. Australian Nguyen Tuong Van is awaiting a decision on his bid for a pardon from Singapore President S.R. Nathan. The 29-year-old was sentenced to death in March after being found guilty of smuggling 400 gm of heroin into the country.

[  eians.com

Sunday August 7, 2005

Concert against death penalty

*SINGAPORE:* Dissident artists and musicians staged a rare protest concert on Friday against the death penalty here ahead of the republic's 40th independence day celebrations.

The "Hung at Dawn" concert was staged in memory of Shanmugam Murugesu, a former soldier and champion athlete hanged on May 13 after being convicted of trafficking about 1kg of marijuana.His case has become a rallying point for opponents of capital punishment in Singapore who have teamed up with anti-execution campaigners in other Asian countries.The 38-year-old Murugesu's twin teenage sons, Gopalan and Krishnan, were applauded when they turned up for the concert, attended by fewer than 100 guests and performers at an arts centre in the city centre.

The concert, featuring punk and experimental musicians, was permitted by the Singapore police but they barred the use of images of Murugesu, forcing the organisers to black out his image from concert paraphernalia.A police spokesman said the event was allowed "provided that their concert and publicity efforts do not glorify people who have been tried and convicted by the courts."Concert organisers instead sold black T-shirts with the slogans "Abolish Death Penalty" on the front and "F*** Your Politics" on the back.

Singapore will celebrate its National Day on Tuesday. It prides itself on its low crime rate and says capital punishment is needed to keep the drug trade in check.Sinapan Samydorai, president of the human rights advocacy group Think Centre, said the police permit for the concert was "a step forward" for Singapore, which has long restricted dissent."It is a good sign that they will allow such an issue to be publicly debated," he said. "A few years ago, most people would not have expected a police response like this."

Singapore imposes the mandatory penalty of death by hanging on convicted murderers and drug traffickers.Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said last year that more than 400 people had been executed in Singapore between 1991 and 2003, which it described as a "shocking number" for a nation of just over four million people. ? AFP

[  thestar.com.my

04. August 2005

in einem bericht über eine delegation der anwaltsvereinigung in deutschland und dem uk steht, das im april 72 menschen zum tod verurteilt waren.

JFBA to study ending death penalty

The Japan Federation of Bar Associations said Wednesday it will send a delegation to Germany and Britain later this month to study how the abolition of capital punishment has affected the two countries.The 13-member delegation is also expected to research the two countries' legal systems, including ways to prevent death-penalty misjudgments and support for crime victims, during the Aug. 20-28 trip, it said.

Delegation members plan to visit prisons, research centers and victim-support groups in both countries, while attending an international study session on the abolition of capital punishment.The JFBA adopted a resolution last October urging the government and Diet to enact a temporary statute to suspend executions while the public discusses the issue.According to the federation, 72 people were on death row in Japan as of April.Japan is among the 76 countries that have the death penalty, while 120 countries had no capital punishment as of December.

[  japantimes.co.jp

04. August 2005

zwei männer, die wegen " sodomie" angeklagt werden und im fall einer verurteilung mit einem todesurteil rechnen müssen, wurden gegen kaution entlassen.

Nigerian Gays Facing Stoning Execution Granted Bail

(Lagos) Two gay men facing death sentences for alleged sodomy have been released on bail by a Nigerian Islamic court after members of Congress voiced their concern to the Nigerian President about the treatment of gays in the African nation.Yusuf Kabir, 40, and Usman Sani,18 were arrested in June and held until a hearing last month where a Sharia court judge ordered them to remain behind bars until a second hearing this week.

Police said they were arrested while having sex in a public washroom. But, on Wednesday, the judge ordered their release."The prosecution has not brought its witnesses before this court today; I therefore grant bail to you both on the condition that each of you bring adults to stand as sureties," Islamic judge Mustapha Sani Saulawa ruled.The pair are to return to court August 24. If police do not find witnesses the men could have their charges dropped.

The case comes only weeks after Philip Alston, the United Nations special rapporteur on arbitrary executions called for an immediate review of a case involving a 50 year gay old man sentenced to death by stoning.Alston stumbled across the man while on a UN tour of Nigerian prisons.Alston said that the man told him he had been charged with sodomy on the word of a neighbor and brought before a Sharia court. Following a brief trial he was acquitted for lack of evidence.

But, according to Alston's report, the judge then asked the man if he had ever had sex with another man. When the man answered yes the judge convicted him of sodomy and sentenced him to death.That case prompted a protest from 22 Democratic members of Congress.The letter was organized by Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), the senior Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee; and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), the senior Democratic woman on the House Committee on International Relations and the Whip of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Rep.Tom Lantos (D-CA), the senior Democrat on the House Committee on International Relations; and Rep. Donald Payne (D-NJ), the senior Democrat on the International Relations Subcommittee on Africa, Global Human Rights and International Operations, were among the members signing the letter."We strongly urge you to intervene in this case to assure that this man's legal and human rights are respected and defended," the letter states. "We share the view of the special rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights who recently ended a visit to Nigeria with a call for the death penalty to be dropped in cases of homosexuality and for "immediate measures to review the entire proceedings" of this man's case in particular. "

The letter goes on to note: "We have been very supportive of your efforts to transform Nigeria from military to civilian rule, and we applaud in particular the role your country is playing to help foster stability in West Africa. We also continue to be supportive of U.S. aid to Nigeria, but we must tell you that Americans are also entitled to expect that countries that benefit from our humanitarian and economic assistance will not tolerate practices that are so clearly in violation of basic human rights."

It is not known if the letter was in part responsible for the granting of bail in the case of Kabi and Sani. The fate of the third man is unknown at this time.

[  365gay.com

nachrichten / artikel zur todesstrafe in verschiedenen ländern unter: Death Penalty News and Statistics http://people.smu.edu/rhalperi/updates.html
02. August 2005
Aufhebung der Todesstrafe in Usbekistan bis zum Jahre 2008

TASCHKENT, 02. August (RIA Nowosti). Der Präsident von Usbekistan, Islam Karimow, hob per Erlass die Todesstrafe in seinem Land ab dem Jahr 2008 auf.

In dem Erlass, der am Dienstag veröffentlicht wurde, ist festgelegt, dass „ab 1. Januar 2008 die Todesstrafe als Form der strafrechtlichen Verurteilung aufgehoben und durch lebenslange oder langjährige Haftstrafen ersetzt wird“. Die Regierung des Landes wurde angewiesen, eine Verordnung über Maßnahmen zum Bau und zur Vorbereitung der Inbetriebnahme von spezialisierten Gefängniskomplexen zu verabschieden, die für die Unterbringung von Häftlingen, die zu lebenslanger oder einer langjährigen Freiheitsstrafe verurteilt wurden, erforderlich sind.

Bei der Erringung der Unabhängigkeit enthielt das Strafrecht von Usbekistan mehr als 30 Paragraphen, die die Todesstrafe vorsahen. Im Strafgesetzbuch von Usbekistan ging die Zahl derartiger Delikte im Jahre 1994 auf 13, im Jahre 1998 auf acht und im Jahre 2001 auf vier Arten von Straftaten zurück. Seit der Umsetzung eines Komplexes von Maßnahmen zur Liberalisierung des Strafrechts im Jahre 2003 ist die Anwendung der Todesstrafe nur noch bei zwei Straftaten vorgesehen: Vorsätzlicher Mord unter verschärfenden Voraussetzungen und Terrorismus. Unabhängig von der Schwere der begangenen Straftat verbietet die Gesetzgebung die Anwendung der Todesstrafe bei Minderjährigen, Frauen und Personen über 60 Jahre.

[  rian.ru

July / August

Im juli und august hingerichtet :

6. juli  -  Alexander Martinez  -   TX  -   Lethal Injection

12. juli  -   Robert Conklin  -   GA  -   Lethal Injection

19. juli  -   Michael Pennington  -   OK  -   Lethal Injection

27. juli  -   Kevin Conner  -   IN  -   Lethal Injection

28. juli  -   David Martinez  -   TX  -   Lethal Injection

4. august  -   George Sibley Jr.  -   AL  -   Lethal Injection

10. august  -   Gary Sterling  -   TX  -   Lethal Injection

11.august  -   Kenneth Turrentine  -   OK  -   Lethal Injection

30. July 2005

in china gibt es 18 dieser fahrbaren hinrichtungsautos.


Chinese police lead a condemned man into a special execution van, where he will be put to death immediately following his sentencing by a court, in Xian, central China's Shaanxi province. An anti-capital punishment group reported at least 5,000 of the 5,476 known executions worldwide in 2004 were held in China. While the actual number of executions in China remains a closely guarded state secret, the Beijing government insists it needs to maintain a tough line on crimes.

[  gulf-times.com

dazu gab es schon mehrere berichte von amnesty:

[  Chinese use mobile death vans to execute prisoners

[  Death Penalty in China

30. July 2005

in st. lucia wird die erste hinrichtung seit 10 jahren vorbereitet. Im vor kurzem gebauten bordelais correctinal knast wird zur zeit der galgen "getestet".

St Lucia to resume executions

St Lucia is set to resume executions of prisoners on death row, for the first time in more than a decade.The move comes as the government grapples with a significant rise in violent crime.

Attorney General Victor La Corbiniere told Caribbean Net News on Thursday that procedures for hanging are being activated in the case of one individual whose appeals have been exhausted.The gallows at the recently built Bordelais Correctional Facility are yet to be tested; and this would be St Lucia's 1st execution since Solomon Vitalis was hung, more than ten years ago, for the murder of a Dominican accountant.

La Corbiniere said, "Constitutionally, there is a framework for the death penalty (in St Lucia)."As for the impact of capital punishment on crime, the Attorney General believes "in a small country... there will be a stronger deterrent effect."The news has been met with opposition from local human rights lawyer, Mary Francis, who called the government's moves "premature."

"Government has a duty to do the right thing regardless of if it is unpopular" try to sensitize and change public opinion in St Lucia, to the point or the thinking that having the death penalty is not the right way to solve violent crime," Francis said.There are currently 4 men at Bordelais Prison who have been handed the death penalty.They include Kim John and Francis Phillip, who were convicted of the brutal New Year's Day attack on worshippers at a Catholic Church in the capital, Castries.

The unrelenting wave of violent attacks which is sweeping through the country is showing no sign of easing.Recorded homicides on the island, so far for this year, are more than double the number for the same period last year.The Government has refused to provide a firm date when the first execution will be carried out.Attorney General La Corbiniere believes that once the procedures for hanging get underway, there will be detractors who will try to stall the process.

[  caribbeannetnews.com

27. July 2005

im gaza city central knast wurde ein wegen mord verurteilter mann hingerichtet.

Palestinian Authority executes convicted murderer

The Palestinian Authority executed a convicted murderer on Wednesday, defying international calls to halt capital punishment as part of reforms considered key to securing future Palestinian statehood.

An official statement said Raed al-Mughrabi, 32, was hanged in Gaza City's central prison.Mughrabi was convicted of murder and robbery in 2001 and the execution was approved by President Mahmoud Abbas, the statement said.Last month, three men were hanged and a fourth was killed by a firing squad after they confessed in a Gaza City court to murder. They were the first executions carried out in Palestinian-ruled areas since 2001.

Abbas is under domestic pressure to curb crime that has run rampant in the Gaza Strip and West Bank during 4-1/2 years of conflict with Israel.The capital punishment issue is especially acute when it comes to dozens of Palestinians jailed on charges of spying for Israel, a major crime in tight-knit Arab society.Palestinian officials said in April that planned executions of 15 convicted informers were suspended after complaints by the European Union, the biggest aid donor to the Palestinians.

Human rights groups have complained of a lack of due process of law in the judicial proceedings that have led to executions.In its statement on Wednesday's hanging, the Palestinian Authority said Mughrabi's case had gone through "all legal procedures" and he was tried and executed "in accordance with criminal law and Islamic law".

[  alertnet.org

Minutes before hanging, murderer admits another slaying

In Gaza, a Palestinian executed late Wednesday in Gaza City confessed from the gallows to another, previously unsolved homicide.A statement from the Palestinian Authority Interior Ministry said that the execution was carried out against Ra?zed Al Mughrabi, a resident of Jabalia refugee camp, "for committing a homicide one year ago."A Palestinian civil court had convicted Al Mughrabi for his role in a 1st-degree murder, which he confessed before judges in the case.

Al Mughrabi "confessed before being hanged that he committed another homicide before he committed the 1st one," said the Interior Ministry statement.The statement added that Palestinian police had failed to solve the earlier case.Since the beginning of the year, according to a survey conducted by the Interior Ministry, crime has increased in the Palestinian territories, including 54 slayings.

Families of victims had been repeatedly demonstrating in the streets of the Gaza Strip, urging Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to enforce the law and execute murderers.Palestinian security sources reported that there are more than 50 Palestinians convicted of murder and sitting on death row, awaiting higher decisions to enforce their executions.Abbas and Interior Minister General Nasser Yousef have vowed that deteriorating security in the Palestinian territories would soon be halted and law and order reimposed.

[  khaleejtimes.com

21. July 2005
Iran Gay Teens Executed

öffentliche hinrichtung von zwei jugendlichen in der stadt mashhad.die offizielle version ist das die beiden einen 13jährigen vergewaltigt haben sollen, andere quellen behaupten das urteil sei begründet mit homosexualität.

[  read more here:

05. JULY 2005

nachdem ein gericht die klage der fast 500 zum tod verurteilten menschen abgelehnt hat und die todesstrafe als "rechtmäßig" erklärt hat, klagen die menschen jetzt vor dem obersten gericht.

Death Penalty Challenge Extended to Supreme Court

Hundreds of death row inmates in prisons of Luzira, Kampala and the Jinja-based Kirinya, have not rested their case.

The group challenging their sentence has now gone to the Supreme Court to challenge the June 10 decision by a lower court that death sentence is constitutional.Through their advocates, Katende and Ssempebwa Advocates, the condemned prisoners numbering to about 500, maintain that the death penalty is cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.The government has on the other hand appealed to the same court against some sections of the Constitutional Court judgement.

The court held that it is unconstitutional to keep condemned prisoners on the death row for over three years, after the Supreme Court has confirmed their sentences. It also scrapped the mandatory death sentences in some capital sentences and said the condemned prisoners would have a right to appeal against their sentence once the state fails to hang them in three years after the Supreme Court confirms their sentences.It was a two to three judges decision passed by Justices Galdino Okello, Amos Twinomujuni and Constance Byamugisha. Justices Alice Mpagi Bahigeine and Stephen Kavuma dismissed the entire petition.

In the appeal filed at the Mengo-based Supreme Court on June 24, the Attorney General, who strongly defended the death penalty at the hearing, says the lower court's orders scrapping mandatory sentencing and giving the convicts a right of appeal should be quashed.Both the Attorney General and the lawyers representing the condemned prisoners are yet to respond to each other's appeal before hearing dates are set.

Despite declining to scrap the death sentence, the court said it would within its discretion have a right of substituting the sentences of the prisoners to life imprisonment or any other, depending on the circumstances of their particular cases, if they are not hanged or released within a three-year period.They said execution after a lengthy jail term is like double punishment, given the "depressing and intolerable conditions in prisons that often result into the death of very many prisoners before their actual execution." "These prisoners are left in suspense for a long time. They live in constant fear for several years because they are not sure about when they would be executed, and they at the same time witness their colleagues being taken for execution," Justice Okello said.

The court observed that the prisoners are kept on the death row for between five and six years.On mandatory sentencing, the court said it takes away the principal of fair hearing, the judges' discretion in determination of a sentence and the right for a convict to mitigate before they are sentenced.Uganda has executed up to 377 people, including one woman, since 1938. Of those, President Yoweri Museveni's government sent 51 people to the gallows since it took over power in 1986.

[  allafrica.com

04. July 2005

in einem artikel zum todesurteil gegen 5 männer die einen richter ermordet haben soll steht das seit 28 jahren keine todesurteil mehr vollstreckt wurde. Einen antrag, die todesstrafe abzuschaffen und die urteile in lebenslänglich umzuwandeln wurde 2001 abgelehnt.

* Death sentence for judge killers *

Five men are sentenced to death in Sri Lanka for killing a high-profile judge in November last year.

Death sentence for judge killers

Five men have been sentenced to death in Sri Lanka for killing a high-profile judge in November last year.Judge Sarath Ambepitiya, who was renowned for his tough sentences on underworld figures, was shot dead as he arrived home from court.The five men convicted at the Colombo High Court were said to be members of a gang linked to the drugs trade.The government set up a special security unit to protect the judiciary after the killing.Police chief Chandra Fernando personally took over the investigation.

Gang leader

The assassination on 19 November prompted President Chandrika Kumaratunga to reaffirm her country's commitment to capital punishment, saying it applied for murder, rape and drug trafficking.No executions have been carried out for 28 years in Sri Lanka, although a move to commute all death sentences to life in prison was revoked in January 2001.The five men sentenced to death can take their case to the Court of Appeal and if that fails, go to the Supreme Court and, finally, ask for clemency from the president.

The man said to be the gang's leader, Potta Nauffer, was among those convicted.Judge Ambepitiya's bodyguard also died in the assassination in Colombo.The attack was the first time the judiciary had been targeted in a country where political figures have frequently come under fire.Judge Ambepitiya had just given a life sentence to a woman drug trafficker when he was killed.

In 2002, the judge also sentenced the leader of the Tamil Tiger rebels, Velupillai Prabhakaran, to 200 years in jail in absentia over a 1996 bomb attack.The truck bombing of the Central Bank in Colombo killed 91 people.

[  bbc.co.uk

02. JULY 2005

21 kinder / jugendliche ( keine genaue angaben wie alt die menschen sind) sind zum tod verurteilt. In dem artikel über die seit 10 jahre bestehende kampagne zur einführung eines ?comprehensive juvenile justice law? steht u.a. das eine der vorgeschlagenen teile des gesetzes die anhebung des alters der strafmündigkeit von 9 auf 12 jahre ist.

21 children in jail await execution

Bill to save them gathers dust in Congress

TWENTY-ONE of the 2,000 or so children in jail throughout the country are on death row, an official of the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) has said.Eighty percent of the 2,000 are first-time offenders, and 11 percent are girls.In an interview with INQ7.net, CWC executive director Lina Laigo said the 21 condemned children were either convicted of homicide or murder.

"But nobody bothered to look into the circumstances of their crimes," said Laigo, a former secretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).In some instances, juvenile suspects were tried as adults for lack of record on their age, she said. "But there are other ways of determining a person's age aside from birth certificates."The CWC, DSWD and the United Nations Children's Fund have been lobbying Congress to enact the proposed Comprehensive Juvenile Justice Law. It seeks to provide special protection to children in conflict with the law.

Laigo said the bill has four key provisions: raise the child's age from nine to 12 years old to be criminally liable, establish separate detention centers for children, provide a diversion program to keep them out of jail, and to institute "restorative justice" in the law.Restorative justice, Laigo explained, essentially seeks to repair the damage done to victims. This way, public safety is enhanced as the offender, victim, and the community come together to prevent juvenile delinquency.

The campaign for the protection of child offenders has been going on for 10 years, and the bill to comprehensively address juvenile felony has been waiting Congressional action since 1998. However, it has been sidelined by other issues, Laigo lamented."We started five congresses ago," she said. "Maybe we don't realize that children, especially children in conflict with the law, must be given priority."Child advocates maintain that "jail is no place for a child" and a death sentence is too heavy a verdict for erring children.

[  news.inq7.net

12. JUNE 2005

4 männer wurden in gaza hingerichtet, die ersten hinrichtungen seit 2002.

PA brings back death penalty

The Palestinian Authority on Sunday carried out the first executions in the country since 2002, reversing a stay imposed in response to international pressure.Four men who confessed to murders in a Gaza court were killed on Sunday - three by hanging, one by firing squad."Three of the four were executed by hanging and the fourth by firing squad," interior ministry spokesperson Tawfiq Abu Husa told reporters on Sunday.

"All of them were sentenced to death for murder," Mr. Abu Housa said, adding that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas rejected requests for a stay of execution.The executions come as a new sign of the Palestinian Authority's (PA) efforts to rein in lawlessness, a spokesman said.According to analysts, the death penalty is expected to be opposed by the European Union, top donor to the PA.The Palestinian leader signed the execution order on Saturday, Mr. Abu Housa said.

"There is a new policy of enforcing the law to face and fight the chaos and lawlessness in the Palestinian territories," Mr. Abu Housa said.According to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, with Sunday?s execution orders included, only nine death sentences had been carried out since the formation of the Palestinian Authority in 1994 - out of 70 imposed by the courts.Under heavy international criticism of the measure, the former Palestinian President Yasser Arafat stopped authorising executions in 2002.

Responding to pressure from Palestinians to end "security chaos" in the Gaza Strip - Abbas asked the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, on February for an Islamic legal ruling on the death penalty.Palestinian officials said last March that some 15 prisoners on death row would be executed by the end of the month, in the first use of capital punishment since August 2002, however, the first execution was carried out on Sunday.

Sheikh Sabri reviewed 51 cases - about half concerning alleged collaborators with Israel, an especially sensitive issue.Sheikh Sabri recommended the resumption of executions saying that delaying the execution orders "encouraged the phenomenon of revenge in the Palestinian community".

[  aljazeera.com

Palestinian rights group critical of Abbas' support for death penalty

Sunday's executions approved by Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, under intense internal pressure to stamp out rampant crime, appeared to be an attempt to deter criminals and send a message to the public.

The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) has carried out four death sentences this morning in Gaza City. PCHR is gravely concerned about this development, the first executions since 2002, and reiterates that the death penalty constitutes a violation of the right to life. It is a cruel and inhumane punishment that does not serve to deter crimes. PCHR calls upon President Abbas again not to convert death sentences and the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) to repeal legislation related to the death penalty.

In the early hours of this morning, Sunday, 12 June 2005, the PNA carried out death sentences handed down against four prisoners convicted of murder and other crimes between 1995 and 2000. The executions took place between 04:00 and 05:00 this morning in the police compound (al-Jawazat) and the main security compound (Saraya) in Gaza City without any prior announcement that they were to be carried out.

1. Mohammed Daoud al-Khawaja, 24, from al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza. Al-Khawaja was sentenced to death by the Higher State Security Court on 12 September 2000 after he had been convicted of murdering Mustafa Baroud on 5 September 2000. He was executed by firing squad in al-Jawazat compound.

2. Wa'el Sha'ban al-Shoubaki, 33, from Gaza. Al-Shoubaki was sentenced to death by Gaza Central Court on 15 March 1996 after having been convicted of murdering Suhail al-Sayed. He was hanged in Saraya compound.

3. 'Ouda Mohammed Abu 'Azab, 27, from Khan Yunis. ?Azab was sentenced to death by Gaza Central Court on 31 October 1995 after having been convicted of kidnapping and murder. He was hanged in Saraya compound.

4. Salah Khalil Musallam, 27, from Khan Yunis. Musallam was sentenced to death by a criminal court on 25 January 1996 after having been convicted of murder and robbery. He was hanged in Saraya compound.

These executions have been the first since 7 August 2002, when the PNA executed Bashir Sameeh 'Abdul Latif who had been convicted by a military court in Ramallah on 1 August 2002 of murdering Halima and Tamam 'Abdullah Qutairi. According to PCHR's documentation, the PNA has carried out nine death sentences since its establishment in 1994 and a further nine prisoners have been killed in other circumstances, included extra-judicially killed by gunmen who attacked prisons and court houses. Palestinian courts have handed down 73 death sentences since 1994.

On 7 February 2005, PCHR sent a letter to the newly elected Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas calling upon him not to convert death sentences. PCHR reiterated its stance in that letter that the death penalty constitutes a blatant violation of the right to life and is a cruel and inhumane punishment. PCHR further noted to President Abbas that there is a global trend towards abolishing the death penalty as it has been proven not to deter crimes in countries which it has been applied. At that time, PCHR called upon the PLC to immediately repeal death penalty legislation.

It is significant that the majority of death sentences were issued by the State Security Court which was established by the PNA in 1995. PCHR has previously and consistently criticised the existence of this court which lacks minimum standards for a fair trial - security officers act as judges, trials are summary and do not allow time for defense cases to be formed and verdicts and sentences delivered are not subject to appeal.

PCHR is gravely concerned that the implementation of these four sentences could be a prelude to more death sentences being carried out in the near future. While PCHR emphasises the rule of law, it reiterates its rejection for the death penalty. The death penalty is a cruel and inhumane punishment which violates the right to life:

PCHR calls upon the PNA and the PLC to formally abolish the death penalty in Palestinian legislation and convert death sentences issued to prison sentences. As the majority of death sentences were issued by the State Security Court, PCHR calls for a review of these sentences by civil courts.

PCHR is concerned about the criteria used to select these four prisoners for execution in favour of other prisoners who have been issued death sentences. PCHR notes that all those who were executed were convicted of criminal offences and not of collaboration with Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) for which a number of persons have been sentenced to death. PCHR rejects the selective implementation of all court rulings and asserts that dozens of decisions issued by Palestinian courts, including the Palestine High Court of Justice, but have not been so far implemented.

[  electronicintifada.net

13. JUNE 2005

artikel über die entscheidung des supreme courts die todesstrafe gegen thomas miller-el ( texas) wegen rassismus aufzuheben und einen neuen prozeß anzuordnen

Supreme Court reverses conviction of Texas death row inmate claiming racial bias

(AP) - WASHINGTON-The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday overturned the conviction of a black death row inmate who said Texas prosecutors unfairly stacked his jury with whites, issuing a harsh rebuke to the state that executes more people than any other.The 6-3 ruling ordered a new trial for Thomas Miller-El, who challenged his conviction for the 1985 murder of a 25-year-old Dallas motel clerk. It was the second time justices reviewed the case after a lower court refused to reconsider Miller-El's claims.The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans was wrong to reaffirm the conviction in light of the strong evidence of prejudice, justices said.

[  findlaw.com

Death Row Conviction Overturned Over Race

Supreme Court Reverses Conviction of Black Texas Death Row Inmate Claiming Racial Bias

WASHINGTON Jun 13, 2005 - The Supreme Court overturned the conviction of a black death row inmate who said Texas prosecutors unfairly stacked his jury with whites, issuing a harsh rebuke to the state that executes more people than any other.The 6-3 ruling Monday ordered a new trial for Thomas Miller-El, who challenged his conviction for the 1985 murder of a 25-year-old Dallas motel clerk. It was the second time justices reviewed the case after a lower court refused to reconsider Miller-El's claims.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans was wrong to reaffirm the conviction by a state court in light of the strong evidence of prejudice during jury selection, justices said.The state court's conclusion that the prosecutors' strikes of people from the jury pool was "not racially determined is shown up as wrong to a clear and convincing degree; the state court's conclusion was unreasonable as well as erroneous," Justice David H. Souter wrote for the majority.

In the opinion, Souter noted that black jurors were questioned more aggressively about the death penalty, and the pool was "shuffled" at least twice by prosecutors, apparently to increase the chances whites would be selected.He was joined by Justices John Paul Stevens, Sandra Day O'Connor, Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen G. Breyer.

"The prosecutors' chosen race-neutral reasons for the strikes do not hold up and are so far at odds with the evidence that pretext is the fair conclusion, indicating the very discrimination the explanations were meant to deny," Souter wrote."At least two of the jury shuffles conducted by the state make no sense except as efforts to delay consideration of black jury panelists," Souter said, adding that it "blinks reality" to deny jurors were struck because they were black.

Since capital punishment was reinstated in 1976, Texas has executed over one-third of the more than 900 people put to death in the United States.Justices last year issued stinging reversals in three cases involving Texas death penalty convictions on various grounds, a striking number for a conservative-leaning court that generally favors capital punishment. All the cases involved black defendants.

Miller-El contends that Dallas County prosecutors had a long history of excluding blacks from juries and pointed to training manuals that were distributed to prosecutors from the 1960s into the early 1980s. The manuals advised prosecutors to remove blacks or Jews from death penalty juries on the theory that those groups would be more sympathetic to criminal defendants.At trial, he was convicted by a 12-member jury that included one black. Prosecutors struck nine of the 10 blacks eligible to serve.

In a dissent, Justice Clarence Thomas argued that Texas prosecutors had offered enough evidence that exclusions were made for reasons other than race.For instance, the state's explanation that jurors were struck based on their hostility to the death penalty is plausible, and the alleged racial motivation behind prosecutors' decision to shuffle the jury pool is only speculative, wrote Thomas, the court's only black member.

"In view of the evidence actually presented to the Texas courts, their conclusion that the state did not discriminate was eminently reasonable," Thomas wrote in an opinion joined by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and Justice Antonin Scalia.Last year, the Supreme Court overturned two Texas death sentences because jurors were not told of the defendants' learning disabilities. They were LaRoyce Lathair Smith, convicted for the 1991 killing of a Taco Bell manager in Dallas, and Robert Tennard, charged with killing a Houston neighbor in 1985.

The court also lifted Delma Banks' death sentence and delivered a strong criticism of Texas officials and lower courts, saying that prosecutors had hid crucial information that might have helped Banks' case.

The case is Miller-El v. Dretke, 03-9659.

In a separate case, the Supreme Court made it easier Monday for California defendants to claim racial bias in jury selection, siding 8-1 with a black man who was convicted of killing his white girlfriend's baby.Jay Shawn Johnson argued that prosecutors' dismissal of potential black jurors was unconstitutional. He was convicted by an all-white jury.Justice John Paul Stevens, writing for the majority, ruled the California standard for showing jury bias was too strict. Justice Clarence Thomas dissented, saying a state has a right to craft its own rules.

The case is Johnson v. California, 04-6964.

[  Supreme Court

[  abcnews.go.com

03. JUNI 2005

die regierung von barbados wird vor dem kürzlich eingesetzten carribean court of justice für die wiedereinsetzung der todesstrafe gegen zwei männer klagen.Das höchste gericht in barbados hat die gegen die zwei männer verhängte todesstrafe in lebenslänglich umgewandelt.

Barbados may take first death penalty case to the CCJ

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados: The Barbados government may take its first death penalty case to the recently inaugurated Caribbean Court of Justice.It's possible that the government could approach that court to restore the death sentences of Jeffrey Joseph and Lennox Boyce, which were commuted to life imprisonment by the country's Court of Appeal earlier this week.

They had been previously sentenced to hang for the 1999 brutal murder of 22-year-old Marquelle Hippolyte, and death warrants were read to them on two occasions.Attorney General, Mia Mottley says while she has not had a chance to study the court?s ruling comprehensively, it appears to be a judgment that can be appealed. "Over the course of the next week or two, we will review our position and make a determination as to the question of the appeal," she said.Ms. Mottley says the order of the court has been stayed for 21 days and government therefore has sufficient time within which to make the determination.

"If the government does appeal we would have to apply for that stay to be extended because the case would not have received its final determination by Barbados" final court of appeal (CCJ) as yet," she said.

The Attorney General indicated that government was aware that whichever side was successful in the Barbados Court of Appeal, it was likely that the CCJ would have been called upon to ultimately settle the matter.With Barbados having signed on to the appellate jurisdiction of the CCJ, if the Boyce and Joseph case is heard there, that decision will be final.It was on Tuesday that the Barbados Court of Appeal considered whether the murderers constitutional rights were breached when death warrants were read to them before they had completed their full round of appeals.

The judges also noted that the five-year period before death sentences can be commuted is less than eight months away and the two-year delay before the appeals of Boyce and Joseph went to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council pushes the time for the completion of those appeals over the limit. Therefore, it said, a report from the Inter-American Human Rights Committee could not be compiled and reviewed by the Privy Council within the specified time.The court ruled that the delay was not the fault of the appellants and in view of the time frame and the circumstances of the case, the proper order would be to commute the sentences.

[  caribbeannetnews.com

23. MAI 2005

der supreme court entschied daß wegen mord angeklagte menschen denen die todesstrafe droht, nicht in hand- und fußschellen vor einem geschworenengericht erscheinen sollen.

Court: Shackles sway jurors in death cases

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court ruled Monday that murder defendants cannot be forced to appear in shackles and chains when a jury is deciding whether they should be sentenced to death or life in prison. By a 7-2 vote, the court said the constitutional guarantee of due process forbids the use of visible shackles unless the judge determines that there are "special circumstances" to justify the restraints, such as a concern that the defendant might escape.

"The appearance of the offender during the penalty phase in shackles ... almost inevitably implies to a jury ... that court authorities consider the offender a danger to the community," Justice Stephen Breyer wrote for the majority in the case of a Missouri man who was convicted of murdering an elderly couple. "It almost inevitably affects adversely the jury's perception of the character of the defendant."

Dissenting Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia said there is no deeply rooted legal bar to using shackles, and they said the majority failed to take into account the "dire security situation faced by this nation's courts." Problems with judicial security have been at the forefront of the news this year. In March, Brian Nichols, a rape defendant in a Fulton County, Ga., courthouse, allegedly overpowered a sheriff's deputy, retrieved the deputy's gun from a lockbox and then killed four people, including a judge.

The case before the high court Monday involved Carman Deck, who was convicted of killing an elderly couple in 1996. During a sentencing hearing, Deck was shackled with leg irons, handcuffs and a belly chain. His lawyer objected repeatedly, saying the jury might believe that Deck was a continuing threat that warranted the death penalty. The trial judge overruled the objections.

After he was sentenced to death, Deck appealed. He claimed that the use of shackles violated his rights to due process under the law. The Missouri Supreme Court rejected the claim. In reversing the state court Monday, the justices noted that the law has long forbidden the routine use of visible shackles during the guilt-or-innocence phase of a case. Breyer traced that prohibition to 18th-century notions that shackles were a form of torture. In the modern era, he said, courts had forbidden such visible restraints based on a concern that it signaled a need to separate a defendant from the community.

Breyer said the same concern arises when a jury is deciding whether a defendant should receive the death penalty. He said shackles may be used only when a judge finds that special security is necessary to control a defendant. The court's majority found no such special circumstances in Deck's case. Deck's attorney, Rosemary Percival, said Deck now would be subject to a new sentencing hearing. Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon said he was disappointed: "I think that courthouse and juror safety should be the priority." Also Monday, the court upheld a federal program that requires beef producers to pay $1 for each head of cattle sold in, or imported into, the USA for a fund that produces advertising such as the "Beef: It's What's for Dinner" campaign.

Ranchers had claimed that the "check off" fee, as it is called, was a violation of their free-speech rights. They said they should not have to pay for advertising that does not distinguish between American ranchers' grain-fed beef and imported beef. By a 6-3 vote, the court said the program represented a permissible fee for government speech.

[  usatoday.com

MAI 2005
durch den staat ermordet:

3. mai 2005: Lonnie Pursley, Texas

6.mai 2005: Earl Richmond Jr. , North Carolina

Mai 2005: George Miller - Oklahoma

Mai 2005: Michael Ross - Connecticut

Mai 2005: Bryan Wolfe - Texas

Mai 2005: Vernon Brown ­ Missouri

Mai 2005: Richard Cartwright - Texas

[  National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

18. MAI 2005

von 11.30 - 14.32 mußte ein mann gefesselt auf der pritsche auf seine ermordung mit der giftspritze warten.

Death-penalty opponents decry inmate's three hours on gurney

ST. LOUIS - Death-penalty opponents objected to an inmate's three hours strapped to a gurney before his execution, saying the wait adds grist to their claims that death by injection is inhumane. The state Department of Corrections defended its treatment of Vernon Brown, saying the inmate never complained of discomfort and actually slept part of the time after taking a sedative he earlier had declined. "He was sentenced to death, not torture," Margaret Phillips of the Eastern Missouri Coalition to Abolish Death Penalty said of Vernon Brown's death. "Everything about it is unsettling. The fact that lethal injection might be painful, with or without the delay, is cause for immense distress. There was no good outcome." Brown, 51, was secured to the gurney in the death chamber at a prison in Bonne Terre, south of St. Louis, about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, 31 minutes before his scheduled execution.

But U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas issued a temporary stay five minutes before the injections were to begin. Brown remained immobilized until the high court, by a 5-4 vote, gave the go-ahead about two hours later for the sentence to be carried out.

Brown, who while strapped down accepted a sedative and remained attached to an intravenous line, got the first of three injections at 2:32 a.m. Wednesday and was declared dead three minutes later. John Fougere, a spokesman for Missouri's prison system, said the Department of Corrections was following its protocol on keeping Brown on the gurney, having been advised by the Supreme Court to "remain in the ready position" during the stay it pressed was only temporary. "We did make sure the offender was not in any physical pain. He told us he was not," Fougere said, noting that Brown fell asleep shortly after taking the sedative about 1 a.m. The inmate was awakened shortly after the Supreme Court lifted the stay about 2:10 a.m.

Though some suggested that perhaps Brown could have been taken to his holding cell near the death chamber as his 11th-hour appeals were meted out, Fougere said that "when we were having thoughts about how long this would go, (the Supreme Court) assured us they were still working on it and to be on standby mode." Fougere said that in his eight years with the Department of Corrections, "I don't believe there's been a time the offender has been on the gurney this amount of time."

Among other things, Brown's attorneys had argued that the drugs used in lethal injection could cause excessive pain, citing a recent article in The Lancet medical journal with research "showing the three-chemical process used by some states to carry out lethal injections has the possibility of causing unnecessary cruelty and suffering." "What you saw this morning was part of a process that just doesn't work," said Diann Rust-Tierney, executive director of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. "There's no nice way of doing it, and there are problems inherent with it.

Brown's execution "is part of a continuum of disturbing things that take place," she said. Brown was put to death for the 1986 slaying of 9-year-old Janet Perkins, the St. Louis fourth-grader that Brown enticed into his home, bound with a coat hangar in his basement and strangled with a rope while his stepsons were locked in their bedroom. Her body was found the next day wrapped in trash bags in an alley behind Brown's house. Brown also had been sentenced to death in the 1985 death of 19-year-old Synetta Ford, whom Brown stabbed and eventually strangled with a curling iron cord.

Fougere said the Department of Corrections would analyze Brown's execution, as it does after any death sentence is carried out. "We do a complete debriefing on every aspect to see if we handled every situation in the right way, and this one is no different," he said.

[  kansascity.com

14. MAI 2005

der supreme court des bundesstaates indiana hat entschieden das ein zum tod verurteilter der gesagt hat er wolle hingerichtet werden, dann aber seine meinung geändert hat, bei seiner einmal getroffenen entscheidung bleiben muß.

Inmate can't change mind about execution, court says

A Death Row inmate who said he wanted to be executed and then changed his mind must abide by his original decision, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled.

In a 3-1 decision Thursday, the high court said it would set a date for the execution of Joseph E. Corcoran, who was sentenced to death in 1999 for killing four people, including his brother and his sister's fiance. Corcoran waived his right to appeal in 2003 despite urgings from his attorneys and a judge, and refused to sign the paperwork authorizing the next legal step in the appeals process. He said at the time that he believed he should be put to death.

Corcoran recanted his decision to waive further appeals and asked the high court to dismiss the involuntary appeal so he could restart the process. The justices denied his request in January, but Corcoran appealed again. But the justices said Thursday that Corcoran had not signed paperwork for his appeal before the required deadline. Corcoran was convicted in the shooting deaths of his brother, James Corcoran, 30; Douglas A. Stillwell, 30; Robert Scott Turner, 32; and Timothy G. Bricker, 30. Turner was the fiance of Corcoran's sister.

[  indystar.com

13. MAI 2005

in einem urteil am freitag, wurde nicht nur die todesstrafe gegen einen mann wieder eingesetzt, es wurde dem staat nebraska ebenfalls bescheinigt das die hinrichtung auf dem elektrischen stuhl nicht grausam ist. Nebraska ist der einzige Bundesstaat in dem diese Tötungsmethode noch angewandt wird, in 9 anderen Bundesstaaten ist der elektrische Stuhl ein so genanntes "alternatives Tötungsmittel ".

NE - Appeals court reinstates death penalty for Palmer by Electrocution
Appeals court reinstates death penalty for Palmer

LINCOLN (AP) - A federal appeals court said Friday that there is no evidence that Nebraska's use of the electric chair as its sole means of execution amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals made the comments about the electric chair in response to a broad appeal involving Nebraska death-row inmate Charles Jess Palmer.

Friday's opinion also, as expected, reversed a 2003 ruling by U.S. District Judge Joseph Bataillon of Omaha that vacated Palmer's death sentence. In 2003, Bataillon ruled that Palmer's murder conviction was valid, but he vacated Palmer's death sentence, citing a 2002 U.S. Supreme Court decision in an Arizona case that said juries - not judges - must decide whether a murder merits the death penalty.

While the U.S. Supreme Court left unclear whether its ruling should apply retroactively to inmates awaiting execution - Bataillon ruled that it did. The high court later said its ruling in the Arizona case was not retroactive, so lawyers involved in the case expected the death sentence to be reinstated. Bataillon stopped short of declaring electrocution unconstitutional in Palmer's case. But he said he had been prepared to rule that the electric chair amounts to cruel and unusual punishment because Nebraska is the only state in the country with electrocution as its sole means of carrying out the death penalty.

In Friday's ruling, Judge Roger Wollman wrote that "there is no argument even plausible that there are differences in the level of 'evolving decency' among the different circuits or states of the union, or over the last very few years, that justifies a holding that the practice of electrocution constitutes cruel and unusual punishment." That language was important because the Nebraska Supreme Court is now considering similar arguments in the case of death-row inmate Carey Dean Moore. Such arguments have been made before, but Moore's lawyer, Alan Peterson, argued before the high court earlier this month that the "evolving standard of human decency" has made the time ripe for the court to declare death by electrocution as cruel and unusual.

"Nebraska ... now is alone in the United States, actually in the whole world, in still requiring electrocution," he said. "Nebraska is the last holdout for this universally rejected and condemned sole means of capital punishment." No American court has ever ruled that electrocution amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. But as legal challenges were mounted against its use in recent years, others states adopted alternative methods such as lethal injection as a means of execution.

Solicitor General J. Kirk Brown argued that nine other states besides Nebraska still have electrocution as an alternative method of execution. "The very practice of electrocution has been upheld by other courts within the past year, and there is no argument even plausible that there are differences in the level of `evolving decency' among the different circuits or states of the union," he told the high court.

Palmer was convicted in the 1979 murder of coin dealer Eugene Zimmerman. Moore was sentenced to death for the 1979 murders of Omaha cab drivers Reuel Eugene Van Ness Jr. and Maynard D. Helegland during two robberies. Lawmakers have since changed Nebraska's law to require juries to decide if aggravating factors exist in a murder case to merit the death penalty. A panel of three judges then decides if the defendant should be executed. Three people - Harold Otey, John Joubert and Robert Williams - have been put to death in Nebraska since executions were resumed in 1994.

[  omaha.com

13. MAI 2005

am 13. mai wurde shanmugm murugesu, wegen dem schmuggel von cannabis ( 1.029,8 gramm), hingerichtet.

shanmugm murugesu was hanged on 13. of may, because of the smuggling of 1.029,8 gram.

[  Singapore: Calls for immediate moratorium on the death penalty

[  more infos: thinkcentre.org

Singapore anti-death penalty fight lives on

16. MAI 2005

When family and friends paid a final visit to Shanmugam Murugesu on the eve of his execution Friday, he urged them to press on with a rejuvenated campaign to end the death penalty in Singapore. There were eight other convicts waiting to be hanged at Changi Prison and he did not want them to die in isolation, one visitor recalled him saying.

Murugesu, 38, a former soldier, jet-ski champion and divorced father of two, was executed for trafficking 1,029.8 grams of marijuana, yet civil rights activists who had mounted the futile attempt to save him have vowed to fight on despite admitting it will be an uphill battle.

Interest stirred through unprecedented public efforts to save Murugesu by his family, friends and civil rights advocates has injected new life into the anti-death penalty campaign. Emboldened by the fledgling support, the campaigners hope to further galvanize public opinion at a time when the government is opening up and allowing the public to speak out more on controversial issues. A candlelit vigil for Murugesu held at a Singapore hotel this month attracted about 100 people - activists and opposition politicians as well as ordinary citizens, many of whom bought and wore T-shirts opposing the death penalty. ``I feel that tonight's event is a display of courage. I think we need the courage of a lot of people for things to change,'' said Iris Koh, a music teacher who volunteered to sing at the evening vigil.

Murugesu's lawyer, M Ravi, said fear in this famously tightly controlled city-state remains a a major factor preventing more people openly supporting the campaign. In an example of the extent authorities still monitor dissenters, an ``open mike session'' at the vigil in which the audience was invited to speak was abruptly ended just after the first speaker began to talk.

Organizers said plainclothes police officers stepped in and asked them to scrap that portion of the program. Singapore, which has some of the toughest laws in the world against drug trafficking, maintains that capital punishment is a crime deterrent contributing to the safety and security its residents now enjoy. A death sentence is mandatory for trafficking more than 15 grams of heroin, 30 grams of cocaine and 500 grams of cannabis, as well as for other crimes such as murder, treason, kidnapping and certain firearm offenses. For drugs, a person caught in possession of illegal substances is assumed to be trafficking, thus putting the burden of proof on to the accused.

The death penalty ``is part of a range of punishments which has helped keep crime rates and drug abuse rates in Singapore low,'' the Home Affairs Ministry said. ``We weigh the right to life of the convicted against the rights of victims and the rights of the community to live and work in peace and security. As a result, Singapore is one of the safest places in the world to live and work in,'' it said, adding Singapore has a ``well-respected and independent judiciary'' and its legal system had been consistently rated highly in global rankings. But civil rights advocates argue there is still room for error and first-time offenders such as Murugesu should be given a second chance. Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said last year more than 400 people had been executed in Singapore between 1991 and 2003, which it described as a ``shocking number'' for a nation of just more than four million people.

The Home Affairs Ministry said eight Singaporeans and foreigners were executed last year and 19 in 2003. Amnesty has criticized Singapore for releasing scant information about death row convicts and their conditions. Sinapan Samydorai, president of civil rights group Think Centre, said this was why Murugesu's cooperation in the anti-death penalty campaign was crucial. He told them about the eight other people waiting to be hanged. One already public case is that of Nguyen Tuong Van, an Australian man of Vietnamese descent who was convicted of drug charges.

[  thestandard.com.hk

APRIL 2005
Using software to model death row outcomes

Convicts on death row can wait for years while appeals are filed and protests lodged. Many never get beyond this limbo. Others are executed.

What determines the final outcome? That is the question two professors, one a criminologist, the other a computer scientist, asked as they took 28 years of data on prisoners facing the death sentence and fed it into a software program.

What the software - known as an artificial neural network - managed to do was to predict with more than 90 percent accuracy who would be executed.

The implication, says Dee Wood Harper, one of the researchers and a professor of criminal justice at Loyola University in New Orleans, is that "if this mindless software can determine who is going to die and who is not going to die, then there's some arbitrariness here in the [United States justice] system." The neural network, which learns by constantly scanning the data for patterns, was given 1,000 cases from 1973 to 2000 where the outcome was known. Once trained on that information, it was fed another 300 cases but without the outcome included. That's when its prediction proved highly accurate. What some observers find alarming about the outcome is that the 19 points of data supplied on each death-row inmate contained no details of the case. Only facts such as age, race, sex, and marital status were included, along with the date and type of offense.

"That's what makes this important," Dr. Harper says. "We didn't look at the crime itself. We didn't look at whether the defendant had received a fair or unfair representation. We simply looked at characteristics of the inmate." Although the research is in its early stages, Harper and his colleague Stamos Karamouzis plan to refine the data group and gradually remove variables until the neural network loses its ability to predict and the most significant factors become apparent.

The clues are already there, Harper says. For instance, the state where someone is convicted is key. California has the largest number of inmates on death row and has executed just 12 people in the last 38 years, whereas Texas has been "an execution machine," he says. [Editor's note: The original version incorrectly counted the number of California executions in 38 years.] The reason, in part, is the appeals process, he says, which in Texas, Virginia, and Florida is "short-circuited" compared with other states.

"If you can die in Texas three times faster than you can die in Louisiana, or you happen to have committed a murder in one of the 38 states where the death penalty occurs, then that in itself is an arbitrary thing," Harper says. "You can be one foot over the line in the next state and not be subject to this kind of penalty."

Arbitrary imposition of the death penalty has long been an argument used by those who oppose it. In a 1972 Supreme Court case Furman v. Georgia, the court found evidence of "arbitrary and discriminatory" sentencing, which violated the Constitution and its provision against "cruel and unusual treatment." As a result, states were forced to reexamine their statutes for capital offenses to ensure that they weren't capriciously applied. A later 1976 Supreme Court case, Gregg v. Georgia, set in motion a restructuring of capital trials to provide a separate phase for sentencing including guidelines for jurors, again to create more fairness. Since 1977, more than 900 executions have taken place in the US.

"Despite all our efforts since the 1970s, who gets executed still appears to be random and arbitrary," says John Wright, a habeas corpus lawyer in Huntsville, home of Texas's execution facilities. He says it surprises him that the 19 factors used in the research could produce such accurate results. In response to Harper's comment that theoretically, "everybody who receives the same sentence for the same crime should receive the same punishment in the same period of time," Mr. Wright says, "it's a standard to which to hold the justice system, but it's not something we think about very much at all." The attitude and discretion of the judge and the effectiveness of the attorneys, he says, can have a major impact on the ultimate outcome of a trial. Harper and Professor Karamouzis are now working to further refine their software model to give the research greater impact.

[  csmonitor.com

29. april 2005

todesurteil für einen us- soldaten der vor zwei jahren in kuwait 2 soldaten tötete und 14 verwundete.

US army sergeant sentenced to death in grenade attack: army

A US army sergeant was sentenced to death Thursday for the murder of two soldiers in a grenade attack at a US military camp in Kuwait at the outset of the Iraq war two years ago, the army said. "Sergeant Hasan Akbar was sentenced to death by a military panel here today at 8:40 pm," an army statement issued in Fort Bragg, North Carolina said. The statement said the results of the trial would be reviewed by Major General Virgil Packett, who may approve the sentence or reduce it all or in part. The case will automatically be reviewed by the Army Court of Criminal Appeals and then by the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. Akbar apologized in court for the attack before a military panel pronounced its sentence at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, local television station WRAL reported. "I apologize for my actions," he was quoted as saying. "When I did that I felt my life was in jeopardy and I had other problems."

Akbar was the first soldier since the Vietnam war ended 30 years ago to face a death sentence for killing another soldier in wartime. The last military execution took place in 1961, but seven other service members have been sentenced to death since the military death penalty was reinstated in 1984. Defense lawyers had blamed mental illness for Akbar's actions on March 22, 2003. He was accused of rolling grenades into three tents at Camp Pennsylvania in the northern Kuwait desert as soldiers slept. The attack was carried out the night before the unit was to cross the Kuwaiti border into Iraq. The attack killed Captain Christopher Seifert, 27, and Air Force Major Gregory Stone, 40, and wounded 14 other soldiers. At the start of the trial, the prosecution said it would prove that Akbar, a convert to Islam, knowingly and wilfully planned and carried out the attacks.

[  spacewar.com

25. april 2005

125 menschen wurden 2004 zum tod verurteilt.

Death sentences fall to record low since 1976 reinstatement

WASHINGTON - The number of people sentenced to death last year fell to the lowest level since the Supreme Court reinstated the penalty in 1976. There were 125 people sent to death row in 2004, down from 144 the previous year and the sixth consecutive annual decline, according to figures compiled by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. In 1998, 300 people received death sentences. Miriam Gohara, assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, said one major cause for the decline is high profile exonerations based on DNA evidence. She said that jurors are less willing to impose the penalty when they see that the system occasionally fails.

"I think people are more concerned about the irreversibility of the death penalty. Once somebody is executed, you can't bring them back," Gohara said. Dianne Clements, president of Justice for All, a pro-death penalty victim advocacy group, offered another explanation. "Not only has the murder rate declined, thank goodness, but the types of killers eligible for the death penalty have been redefined by the Supreme Court," she said. The high court has issued a series of decisions narrowing the death penalty, putting a stop to the execution of juveniles, the insane and the mentally retarded. There also are more jurisdictions where jurors are given options other than death, said Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center. "Juries are being given a choice of life without parole that they didn't have in the early '90s," he said. Dieter also said increased public attention has led to better legal representation for defendants who could face the death penalty.

In his State of the Union address this year, President Bush called for more training for lawyers who represent accused killers, tacit recognition that not all suspects receive an adequate defense. As governor of Texas, a state that executes more inmates than any other, Bush commuted one death sentence and allowed 152 executions. Texas sent the most people to death row last year - 23, followed by California, which sent 11 and Florida and Alabama, which each sent 8. There were 3,374 prisoners awaiting execution at the end of 2003, the latest year for which figures are available from the Bureau of Justice Statistics. That was 188 fewer than the previous year, due largely to then-Illinois Gov. George Ryan granting clemency to all 167 inmates on his state's death row because of concerns about wrongful convictions.


[  Death Penalty Information Center

[  Justice for All

[  NAACP Legal Defense Fund

14. april 2005

nach einer jetzt veröffentlichten studie der uni von miami erleidet jeder 4 hingerichtete fürchterliche schmerzen durch die injektion.

Study:Inmates suffer during lethal injections

Inadequate anesthesia may cause 4 in 10 to stay conscious As many as four of every 10 prisoners put to death in the United States might receive inadequate anesthesia, causing them to remain conscious and experience blistering pain during a lethal injection. Researchers in Florida and Virginia drew this conclusion after reviewing levels of anesthetic in the blood of 49 inmates after they were executed. "I approached this as a physician," said the study's lead author, Dr. Leonidas Koniaris, chairman of surgical oncology at the University of Miami. "We were asking: Is there a possibility of awareness during an execution? Is there a large degree of pain and suffering associated with it? And I think the answer we found is yes."

Of the inmates studied in a report published by the British journal The Lancet, 43 percent had concentrations of anesthetic in their blood - as measured by medical examiners during autopsies - that would indicate consciousness rather than sedation during an execution. Koniaris, who says he does not oppose the death penalty, thinks the study warrants a moratorium on executions until a publicly appointed panel can review whether some inmates remain conscious during lethal injection. "If that's the case, as a society we need to step back and ask whether we want to torture these people or not," he said.

Death penalty supporters dismissed the suggestion of a moratorium. "Lethal injection represents the most humane possible means of punishing a brutal, heinous murderer," said Andy Kahan, Mayor Bill White's advocate for crime victims "Whether or not it is painful, one thing is for sure, it is certainly less painful than the excruciating and horrific death that the victim suffered at the hand of the defendant."

And Mike Viesca, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, said his medical staff has assured him the combination of drugs used in a lethal injection renders a person incapable of feeling pain. The anesthetic, sodium thiopental, is the first of three drugs given in the execution protocol used by Texas and most other death penalty states. The amount typically administered through an IV, 2 to 3 grams, is far more than the amount used to sedate surgical patients and, doctors say, should prove fatal by itself.

Yet, some death penalty critics say poorly trained executioners - most have no formal anesthesia training - could miss a vein or otherwise err in administering a dose. The anesthetic also could wear off during a prolonged execution, which typically last at least 8 minutes. If the anesthetic somehow fails and an inmate regains consciousness, the second step of a lethal injection, administration of a muscle relaxant, paralyzes the muscles and lungs. The third drug given is potassium chloride, a toxic agent that stops the heart. The implications of an ineffective anesthetic are, in the words of a Lancet editorial accompanying the article, troubling: "It would be a cruel way to die: awake, paralyzed, unable to move, to breathe, while potassium burned through your veins."

Argument for a stay

The potential inhumanity of lethal injection is sometimes raised by lawyers trying to win a last-minute reprieve for their death-row clients. In December 2003, Texas killer Kevin Lee Zimmerman had his execution stayed after his lawyers argued that the lethal-injection procedure masked severe pain and thus constituted cruel and unusual punishment. The U.S. Supreme Court soon lifted its stay, and Zimmerman was executed six weeks later. Still, death penalty lawyers say courts may reconsider the issue if more evidence, such as that in the new study, is presented to suggest that executions are extremely painful. The study reviews the blood records of inmates from Arizona, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Texas, the national leader in executions, refused to provide data for the study.

A critical question, the study authors admit, is whether measurements of the levels of sodium thiopental in the blood minutes or hours after death correlate with levels in the blood at the time of execution. However, they note that sodium thiopental levels remain stable in stored human blood. A local anesthesiologist, Dr. Lydia Conlay, said the extrapolation of postmortem sodium thiopental levels in the blood to those at the time of execution is by no means a proven method.

"It's an interesting and thought-provoking study," said Conlay who chairs the department of anesthesiology at Baylor College of Medicine. "I just don't think we can draw any conclusions from it, one way or the other. I just can't be sure what the numbers mean." Some opponents of the death penalty say the public accepts lethal injection as a painless medical procedure because, with the IVs, it appears to be one. "The bottom line is that the there's a real problem with the perception of how lethal injection goes down in the public, and what we believe really goes on," said Gary Clements, deputy director of the Capital Post-Conviction Project of Louisiana, a group that represents death row inmates. Lack of data and records

The study's authors said this question of whether an inmate can feel pain ultimately can't be answered because of the unwillingness of states to maintain or share their execution data and records. In addition to asserting that the TDCJ had no autopsy or toxicology reports for inmates executed by lethal injection, Texas officials told the researchers it did not even have records of how it created the protocol it uses for injections.

Another of the study's authors, University of Miami anesthesiologist Dr. David Lubarsky, said the research team would have greatly preferred to use blood data from inmates at the time of executions. But the data doesn't exist, or it wasn't provided, Lubarsky said. "What we do have is data to suggest the process might be critically flawed," Lubarsky said. "It's now up to the corrections systems to show that, at the time of death, inmates are asleep. We should accept no less when we're killing people."

[  chron.com

11. april 2005

weil sie angebl. mitglieder der sla ( sudan liberation army ) seien wurden zwei männer inhaftiert, schwer gefoltert und sollen jetzt anhand der geständnisse die sie unter der folter machten verurteilt werden. da sie u.a. wegen verschwörung angeklagt sind droht ihnen die todesstrafe.

Two Zaghawa Tribe Members Severely Tortured, now Face Death Penalty

by Sudan Organisation Against Torture

On 22 February 2005 at 11.30am, Sudanese armed forces arrested two men from the Zaghawa tribe in Shourom village, Nyala province, Southern Darfur state on suspicion of joining the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA). The details of the men are as follows


1. Mahmoud Abaker Osman, (38 yrs) merchant, Zaghawa
2. Diggo Abdel Jabbar, Omda (community leader), (45 yrs), merchant, Zaghawa Mahmoud Abaker Osman and Diggo Abdel Jabbar are currently detained in Nyala prison, and face charges that carry the death penalty. The two men were reportedly tortured repeatedly and severely whilst in the custody of the armed forces and military intelligence, and have serious injuries as a result. Both men have been denied access to medical treatment and there are serious concerns for their health.

Following their arrest on 22 February 2005, the two men were reportedly taken by government armed forces to a military camp in Sanya Afondu village (approximately 70 Km south east of Nyala) where they were detained in a hole in the ground for 11 days. During this time, eight soldiers, under the control of a senior ranking military official, beat the men with sticks all over their bodies, beat them with metal sticks on the head and legs, flogged them on the back and chest and burnt their feet and hands with fire. On 4 March 2005, the two men were transferred into the custody of the Military Intelligence in Nyala, where they were detained incommunicado, and denied food for five days.

On 13 March 2005, Mahmoud Abaker Osman and Diggo Abdel Jabbar were taken to Nyala Wasat (central) police station and charged under Article 51 (Waging War against the State) and Article 58 (Abetment to Mutiny) of the 1991 Sudanese Penal Code, which carry the death penalty.

On 19 March 2005, after six days in police custody, the two men were transferred to Nyala prison where they remain in detention and are denied access to medical treatment. Mahmoud Abaker Osman and Diggo Abdel Jabbar are now awaiting trial before the Specialised Criminal Courts in Darfur, which hold summary trials that fall far short of international standards and accept confessions extracted under torture.


Over the past two years, a pattern of widespread and systematic recourse to torture perpetrated by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Military Intelligence operating in Darfur has emerged. Torture is widely used in Darfur, often to extract confessions of membership or affiliation to the armed opposition groups operating in the region.

Members of the sedentary communities in Darfur, such as the Zaghawa, Fur and Maselit, are particularly targeted as they are perceived to support the armed opposition movements. Detainees in Darfur are often not informed of the reason for arrest and are detained incommunicado without charge or trial for extended periods of time. They can be brought before Specialised Criminal Courts in Darfur which hand down cruel, inhuman and degrading punishments, including the death penalty.

Specialised Criminal Courts which operate in Darfur fall far short of international standards for fair trial. Confessions extracted under torture are accepted as evidence and there are curbs on the right to appeal. The right to defence is limited, with lawyers often reliant on the good will of the judge to enable them to attend the court and represent their client. SOAT expresses serious concern for the health and well-being of Mahmoud Abaker Osman and Diggo Abdel Jabbar who have sustained severe injuries through torture and calls on the Sudanese authorities to:

- Grant the two men immediate access to medical treatment and legal advice

- Immediately investigate the alleged incidents of torture and ensure that those responsible are brought to justice

- Take all necessary measures to ensure the physical and psychological integrity of the detainees

- Ensure that Mahmoud Abaker Osman and Diggo Abdel Jabbar are brought promptly brought before a court that operates in compliance with international standards of fair trial.

SOAT is an international human rights organisation established in the UK in 1993. If you have any questions about this or any other SOAT information, please contact us:

- Argo House
- Kilburn Park Road
- London NW6 5LF, UK
- Tel: +44 (0)20 7625 8055
- Fax: +44 (0)20 7372 2656
- E-mail: info@soatsudan.org
- Website: www.soatsudan.org

[  sudantribune.com

6. april 2005

ein seit 1972 zum tod verurteilter mann, wird einen neuen prozeß haben. der jetzt 79 jährige mann,der seit jahren versucht seine "unschuld" zu beweisen, hat gute chancen entlassen zu werden

Man on death row since 1972 to get retrial in 1961 murder case

NAGOYA - The Nagoya High Court decided Tuesday to allow a retrial for Masaru Okunishi, who has been on the death row since 1972 when he was convicted of murdering five women in a wine poisoning case in Nabari, Mie Prefecture, in 1961, citing new evidence that could prove his innocence. The court made the decision in response to the seventh retrial application filed by the defense counsel for the 79-year-old convict. "The court has serious doubts about the credibility of the confessions of the defendant, so that he cannot be assumed as the culprit," Presiding Judge Junichi Koide said in handing down the decision. Koide said the new evidence submitted by the defense counsel has "sufficient evidential power" that may lead to an acquittal in a retrial. Kazushige Sugimoto, the deputy chief prosecutor at Nagoya High Public Prosecutors office, expressed regret over the court ruling but did not say whether prosecutors will appeal.

"We will carefully examine the court ruling and will make an appropriate decision upon consultation with the Supreme Public Prosecutors Office," he said in a statement. Five women, including Okunishi's wife and his lover, died after drinking poisoned wine at a party held at a community center in Nabari on March 28, 1961. The new evidence presented by the defense counsel focuses on experts' opinions on the type of pesticide put in the wine and the way the wine bottle was opened, which apparently contradicted the final court ruling. Okunishi initially confessed to putting pesticide in the wine in an attempt to terminate the love triangle. He later retracted his confession. Okunishi, who is in prison in Nagoya, was initially acquitted by the Tsu District Court in 1964. The Nagoya High Court reversed the decision in 1969 and sentenced him to death, which was subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court in 1972.

After hearing the latest court decision, Okunishi released a statement through one of his lawyers, saying "I am grateful for the decision as it was my ardent wish." "This is the best day for me since I got here and I would like to thank all of my counsel, experts and supporters who have supported me to this day," he said. His defense counsel said in a statement that Okunishi has finally found the day to prove his innocence after being threatened with execution for more than 30 years. The counsel also urged the prosecutors not to file an appeal and release Okunishi as soon as possible. It is the fifth time a court has decided to allow a retrial for a death row inmate. The last time was in 1986 at the Shizuoka District Court. All the convicts in those four other cases were eventually acquitted. (Kyodo News)

[  japantoday.com

6. april 2005

in dem prozeß um die wiederaufnehme des verfahrens eines zum tod verurteilten mannes hat der richter geurteilt, daß der ehemalige staatsanwalt ( der ausgesagt hatte mit dem damaligen richter die geschworenen dahingehend ausgesucht zu haben daß keine jüdischen menschen dabei sind) ein lügner sei.

Judge: prosecutor fabricated tainting death penalty jury

SAN FRANCISCO A judge has ruled that a former Alameda County prosecutor who testified he kept Jews off of a death penalty jury to secure a conviction is a liar. John Quatman alleged that he conspired with a trial judge to remove Jewish jurors from a capital case. But today a specially appointed judge ruled Quatman's assertions "are not true" and that he is "dishonest and unethical." Last month, Quatman testified that he colluded with a now-deceased judge -- Alameda County Superior Court Judge Stanley Golde -- to exclude Jews so it would more than likely send a killer to San Quentin State Prison. Excluding jurors based on religion, race or ethnicity violates state and federal law and are grounds for a new trial.

[  kesq.com

6 April, 2005
ein zum christentum konvertierten mann im iran soll wegen " abtrünnigkeit" vor gericht. sollte das gericht zu einem "schuldig"- urteil kommen, droht die todesstrafe.
Iran, a Christian convert to face death penalty for apostasy

Tehran (AsiaNews/MEC) - Hamid Pourmand, a lay leader in a church and a convert from Islam, will appear before an Islamic court next week to face charges of apostasy, Christians in Iran have learned. If found guilty Pourmand is likely to face the death penalty. Pourmand is a lay leader in the Assemblies of God church in Bandar-i Bushehr and converted to Christianity in 1980. At the time of his arrest he was a Colonel in the Iranian army.

He was arrested September 9, 2004, together with 85 other participants of the annual general conference of denomination. The other Christians were released within the next three days, but pastor Pourmand was charged with hiding his conversion from his superiors. According to Iranian law only Muslims can be officers in the army. On February 16, 2005, pastor Pourmand was found guilty of this charge, even though he presented several papers in court which proved his superior were aware he was a Christian. He was sentenced to three years imprisonment, discharge from the army, and loss of his entire income, pension and housing for his family. A few days later his wife and two children were forced to vacate their house.

Yesterday, Christians learned of the new charges of apostasy from Islam and proselytising other Muslims. Apostasy is a capital offence in Iran. In the last 16 years 3 Iranian church leaders have been charged was apostasy and found guilty. All three were sentenced to death. Pastor Hussein Soodman was hanged in 1989. Deacon Maher already had a noose around his neck when he signalled his willingness to recant and was released after signing a paper to that effect in 1992. Pastor Mehdi Dibaj was condemned to death in December 1993. He was released three weeks later after a strong international outcry; only to be found murdered 6 months later.Christians in Iran have expressed great fears for pastor Hamid's life.

[  asianews.it

5. April 2005

amnesty international: jahresbericht zur todesstrafe

Death Penalty: New report shows world executions at second-highest level in 25 years

[  New report shows world executions at second-highest level in 25 years

[  facts and reports about deathpenalty at amnesty.org

10. März 2005

obwohl die todesstrafe seit 1995 abgeschafft ist, sind immer noch 134 gefangene in todeszellen. 4 gefangene versuchen jetzt mit einer klage neue prozesse zuerreichen und aus diesen träkten herauszukommen.

'Retry death row prisoners'

Johannesburg - Prisoners sentenced to death before the death penalty was abolished should be given a fresh trial and a new sentence, the Constitutional Court in Johannesburg heard on Thursday."Since the death penalty was declared unconstitutional in June 1995, a death sentence ceased to have any legal effect," said advocate Frank Snyckers, arguing on behalf of four death row prisoners.

"Therefore no sentences are imposed on these people, therefore we need to have sentences and the only way to do so, is to have a trial in terms of the (Criminal Procedure) Act.Snyckers said: "We need to create a practical mechanisms to put these people back in the system."The Constitutional Court found the death penalty to be unconstitutional as it violated the right to life and was cruel, inhuman and degrading.

Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson commented that it was intolerable that imprisonment on death row should have been allowed to continue for so long after sentence was scrapped 10 years ago."There are still over 100 people who do not know what their position is," Chaskalson said.The State estimated that about 134 prisoners were still on death row.

[  news24.com

8. März 2005

der ninth u.s. circuit court of appeals ( ein bundesgericht) urteilte das staatsanwälte des san joaquin county die rechte von blufford hayes jr. verletzte in dem sie wissentlich falsche aussagen während des prozesses benutzten die maßgeblich für eine verurteilung wegen mordes waren . der mann sitzt seit dem in der todeszelle.

Murder verdict rejected
Burglary made 1980 killing at motel a capital crime

A Stockton man's murder conviction and death sentence for killing a motel manager during a 1980 burglary was overturned Monday by a federal appeals court.

In a 7-4 ruling, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the San Joaquin County district attorney's office had violated the rights of Blufford Hayes Jr. by knowingly presenting false testimony that was crucial to both his first-degree murder conviction and his death sentence. The ruling entitles him to a new trial.Hayes, now 49, was convicted of murdering Vinod Patel, who was stabbed to death on New Year's Day 1980 in a room of the Stockton motel he managed. Cartons of cigarettes and $23 in cash were taken from the motel office.

Hayes testified at his trial that he acted in self-defense in Patel's killing, but denied burglarizing the motel office. He said his only role was to help another motel resident, Andrew James, load the cigarettes into James' car. James denied that and testified that Hayes had admitted both the murder and the theft. It was the burglary that made the killing a first-degree murder, punishable by death; otherwise, it would not have been a capital crime.The jury was informed of an agreement with prosecutors to give key witness James immunity from prosecution for Patel's murder in exchange for his testimony, but was not told about a second agreement that would allow him to escape prison time on a pending, unrelated theft charge. In fact, prosecutor Terrence Van Oss, now a Superior Court judge, denied the existence of an agreement to the trial judge in Hayes' case.

Van Oss denied making any such promise until 1997, when he admitted it during proceedings in another case, said Richard Such, one of Hayes' appellate lawyers.Lower courts upheld Hayes' conviction and sentence, but the appeals court panel said Monday that the prosecutor's concealment had made it harder for the defense to dent the credibility of James, whose testimony was "the centerpiece of the prosecution's case."Whenever a conviction is obtained by deception, "the entire foundation of our system of justice is weakened,"said Judge Sidney Thomas in the majority opinion. Dissenters, led by Judge Richard Tallman, said the deception had no effect on the verdict because there were other witnesses against Hayes, and James' credibility had already been questioned on other grounds.

[  sfgate.com

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