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…

Vietnam courts overturn death penalty for Nigerian drug mule, sentence Filipino to death for drug smuggling

A court in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City reduced a death sentence previously handed to a Nigerian man for bringing methamphetamine into Vietnam to life imprisonment, local online newspaper Thanh Nien (Young People) News reported Tuesday.

The indictment on Monday said Ejiogu Benjamin Ikechukwu had nearly 3.3 kilograms of the drug in metal tubes and a laptop charger in his luggage as he flew to the city-based Tan Son Nhat Airport in June 2012. He had transited in Qatar.

The 33-year-old man said he only planned to go to Vietnam to buy clothes to resell them in Nigeria and had no idea about the drug in his luggage. He said a man asked him to carry the tubes and the charger to Vietnam and someone would pick them up.

A Ho Chi Minh court in August 2013 sentenced him to death, but he applied for an appeal. The People's Supreme Court then canceled the verdict, ordering a new investigation. Investigators could not track down the people who had used him as a drug mule.

Those convicted of smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or more than 2.5 kilograms of methamphetamine in Vietnam face death penalty. The production or sale of 100 grams of heroin or 300 grams of other illegal narcotics is also punishable by the death penalty.

Source: Xinhua News Agency, August 18, 2015

Hanoi court announces death penalty for cocaine-smuggling Filipino

The Hanoi People's Court sentenced a Philippine national to death for drug trafficking on August 18.

40-year-old Emmanuel Sillo Camacho was arrested with cocaine hidden in his luggage at Noi Bai international airport on December 7, 2013.

Security forces discovered the white powder inside 18 socks with the total weight exceeding 3,408 grams.

Camacho admitted that 4 months before the arrest, he met a woman named Jessica through Facebook who was living in Brazil. At their face-to-face meeting, Jessica hired the man to smuggle drugs into Vietnam, adding that she would offer him a job in Brazil or other countries with wages up to 1,500 USD per month.

The court said Camacho overlooked the Vietnamese law for a quick profit and deserved the capital punishment based on the large amount of cocaine sized 2 years ago.

Jessica's identity is still under investigation.

Source: Vietnam News Agency, August 18, 2015

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