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…

Hopes for mercy for British grandmother on death row in Bali fade

Lindsay Sandiford in her Kerobokan death row cell
Lindsay Sandiford in her Kerobokan death row cell
A British grandmother on death row in a Bali jail for drug smuggling was yesterday told that Indonesia’s new anti-narcotics chief plans to show no mercy to everyone involved with drugs.

Lindsay Sandiford, 59, from Cheltenham, was sentenced to death by firing squad in January 2013 after attempting to smuggle £1.6million of cocaine through Bali’s international airport in May 2012.

She has lost a number of appeals and has had no positive response to her pleas for mercy from Indonesian president Joko Widodo, who has taken a hardline stance on executing convicted drug offenders.

Until now, people who have been able to prove they are addicts have been shown leniency, but the country’s new anti-narcotics director, Budi Waseso, has now announced that he intends to bring in sweeping changes to the drug law, including an end to immunity from prosecution for addicts.

They have until now been at the low end of the drug offenders list but they and those convicted of more serious narcotics offences now face execution.

This is bad news for Mrs Sandiford, who has already been told that President Widodo intends to show her no mercy and she will be led to the firing squad sometime in the near future.

‘If they now plan to execute addicts, what hope would someone who smuggles drugs have?’ asked a visitor to Kerobokan prison, where Mrs Sandiford is being held.

If she had been clinging to any hope, that appears now to have gone following Mr Waseso’s pledge to dramatically change the drug laws and who has announced his total support for the President’s no-nonsense attitude to serious drug offenders.

The existing drug laws, Mr Waseso said, give dealers a loophole to evade prosecution by claiming to be a small-time user.

Source: Mail Online, Richard Shears, Sept. 7, 2015

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