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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…

Three Yemenis beheaded in Saudi, 83 executions in 2015

Public beheading in Saudi Arabia (file photo)
RIYADH: Saudi Arabia beheaded three Yemenis for drug trafficking Wednesday, bringing to 83 the number of executions in little more than four months, compared with 87 all of last year.

The condemned men, Eisa Ali Ahmed Hajri, Mohammed Ali Saifi and Majid Gasim al-Ahdal, were convicted of trying to smuggle hashish into the kingdom, the interior ministry said in a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

They were executed in Jazan province which borders Yemen.

The ministry has cited deterrence as a reason for its use of the death penalty despite criticism from human rights watchdogs.

London-based Amnesty International ranked Saudi Arabia among the world's top three executioners of 2014.

On a visit to Riyadh this month, French President Francois Hollande said capital punishment "should be banned," and his country is campaigning around the world for its abolition.

Drug trafficking, rape, murder, apostasy, homosexuality and armed robbery are all punishable by death under Saudi Arabia's strict version of Islamic Shariah law.

Source: Agence France-Presse, May 13, 2015

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