Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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…

Indonesia: Death Row Frenchman Serge Atlaoui 'Has Exhausted Legal Options'

Serge Atlaoui in Cipinang prison in 2007
Serge Atlaoui in Cipinang prison in 2007
JAKARTA, Indonesia — Indonesia's Foreign Ministry said Thursday a French citizen sentenced to death for drug offenses has exhausted all options in his legal fight to avoid execution.

Ministry spokesman Aarmanatha Nasir said Indonesia will proceed "in accordance with the sentence that has been imposed against the convict," Serge Atlaoui.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has said his government is "totally mobilized" in support of Atlaoui, 51, whose final appeal was denied on Monday by an administrative court in Jakarta. 

Nasir said Indonesia has not received any specific requests from the French government following its statement in reaction to the rejection of Atlaoui's final appeal.

He said Indonesia recognizes that governments have an obligation to protect their citizens when they get into trouble abroad but they must do so in compliance with local laws.

Indonesia has executed 14 people, mostly foreigners, for drug trafficking this year. The Attorney-General's Office says Atlaoui will not be executed during the holy month of Ramadan, which ends in mid-July.

Lawyers for Atlaoui made a last-ditch appeal which had little chance of success after President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo denied clemency in December.

The Frenchman was arrested in 2005 for involvement in an ecstasy factory on the outskirts of Jakarta.

His lawyers say he was employed as a welder at the factory and did not understand what the chemicals on the premises were used for.

Source: Associated Press, June 25, 2015

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