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Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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Update: Robert Pruett was executed by lethal injection on Thursday.
Robert Pruett is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas Thursday. He has never had a chance to live outside a prison as an adult. Taking his life is a senseless wrong that shows how badly the justice system fails juveniles.
Mr. Pruett was 15 years old when he last saw the outside world, after being arrested as an accomplice to a murder committed by his own father. Now 38, having been convicted of a murder while incarcerated, he will be put to death. At a time when the Supreme Court has begun to recognize excessive punishments for juveniles as unjust, Mr. Pruett’s case shows how young lives can be destroyed by a justice system that refuses to give second chances.
Mr. Pruett’s father, Sam Pruett, spent much of Mr. Pruett’s early childhood in prison. Mr. Pruett and his three siblings were raised in various trailer parks by his mother, who he has said used drugs heavily and often struggled to feed the children. Wh…

Council of Europe head appeals Morsi death sentence

Former Egyptian president M. Morsi
Former Egyptian president M. Morsi
The head of the Council of Europe has written to Egypt's Grand Mufti asking him not to approve hundreds of death sentences hanging over jailed dissidents - including former president, Mohamed Morsi.

Thorbjorn Jagland wrote to Professor Shawki Abdel-Karim Allam on Thursday in the hope that capital punishment will not be applied to Morsi and over 100 Muslim Brotherhood activists.

Egyptian law requires death penalties to be referred to the Grand Mufti, the highest religious official in the country.

"The Council of Europe is firmly opposed to the death penalty as a cruel and inhumane punishment which denies human dignity and integrity and can never be undone," Jagland wrote in the letter.

Last year, hundreds of Egyptians were sentenced to death but rulings on only a few dozen were actually upheld, the rest converted into jail sentences of 25 years.

Morsi and 12 codefendants were sentenced to 20 years in prison last month for allegedly mobilizing supporters to "intimidate, detain and torture" dozens of anti-Morsi protesters during clashes outside eastern Cairo's Ittihadiya presidential palace in December 2012.

The former president currently faces multiple criminal trials on charges that include espionage and "insulting the judiciary" -- charges he says are politically motivated.

Source: World Bulletin, May 29, 2015

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