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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…

Bali nine 'bribes' probe ends, key witnesses not questioned

Indonesian authorities have shut down an investigation into allegations that judges asked for bribes in exchange for more lenient sentences for executed Bali nine pair Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan without interviewing the judges and a key lawyer involved in the case.

Muhammad Rifan, one of the men's former lawyers, made the sensational allegations that the judges asked for more than $130,000 for the drug smugglers to be given a prison term of less than 20 years during their original trial.

As revealed by Fairfax Media, Mr Rifan alleged the deal fell through after the judges presiding over the hearings in Denpasar District Court asked for more money because they were under pressure from the Indonesian Supreme Court and Attorney-General's Department to apply the death penalty.

After starting and then abandoning its investigation before Sukumaran and Chan were executed by firing squad, the judicial commission – which oversees the probity of Indonesian judges – re-commenced the probe after their deaths.

"The report on the alleged breach of the code of ethics is closed because the judicial commission has not got sufficient evidence," said Imam Anshori Saleh, a member of the commission.

"Rifan's testimony was heard but he refused for it to be [officially] put in the interrogation report," he said.

"Meanwhile, Peter [Johnson's] lawyers have been summoned twice but refused to meet with us and respond."

Without the lawyers' evidence, the judicial commission won't interview the judges or other witnesses.


Source: The Sydney Morning Herald, Tom Allard, August 23, 2015

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