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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Three young men hanged in public in the Iranian city of Shiraz

Shiraz public hanging
April 16, 2011 - Iran Human Rights
More here and here
Iran Human Rights, April 16: Three young men were hanged in public in the Iranian city of Shiraz, reported the official Iranian news agency IRNA.

According to the report the men identified as "Abolfazl Faraei" (28), "Reza Roshanfekr" (27) and "Seyed Rokneddin Karimi" (28) were convicted of killing security officers two years ago. They were also convicted of kidnapping and armed robbery said the report.

The charges have not been confirmed by independent sources.

Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, the spokesperson of IHR, condemned today’s hangings and said: "Public hanging is a barbaric act that should not be tolerated by the world community in 2011". He added: "Public hanging is also an offence against the society and is solely meant to spread fear in the society".

Source: Iran Human Rights, April 16, 2011 - [فارسى]


Four Iranians hanged in public

Shiraz public hanging
April 16, 2011 - Iran Human Rights
More here and here
Tehran - Four Iranian men were hanged in public on Saturday in the southern province of Fars for armed robbery, kidnapping and murder, the Mehr news agency reported.

Three were executed in the city of Shiraz for armed robbery, kidnapping and murdering two security personnel, the report said.

A fourth man was hanged in Takhteh Kenar for murdering eight people, it added.

The latest hangings bring to 97 the number of executions so far this year in Iran, according to an AFP count based on media reports. [According to sources contacted by this blog, at least 92 executions were carried out in Iran in January 2011 alone.]

Iranian media reported 179 hangings last year

In 2009, 388 people were executed, according to international human rights groups, making Iran second only to China in the number of people it put to death.

The Islamic republic says the death penalty is essential to maintain law and order and is applied only after exhaustive judicial proceedings.

Source: AFP, April 16, 2011
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