Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Australia considering cooperation with India on terror case that could result in death sentence

Australia is reportedly considering cooperating with Indian authorities on a terror case that could end with the suspect getting the death sentence.

Attorney General George Brandis last week had talks with India's Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh on security cooperation.

Indian media reports say Australia indicated it would consider a request to share information about the Yahoo email account of ISIS recruit Areeb Majeed.

The Indian Express reported "a government source" had said Australia was considering the request "favourably" but wanted clarification on the issue of the death penalty.

Senator Brandis' office said it would not comment on the attorney general's private meetings or investigations.

The Express reports Indian authorities have already told Australia they would not guarantee Majeed would be spared the death penalty if convicted on the back of the email evidence.

The server of the Yahoo account is in Australia, and its communications could prove crucial to learning what the Mumbai engineering student did during his time in Iraq and Syria.

It's alleged the 23-year-old trained as an ISIS suicide bomber before sneaking back into India late last year.

The email account could also be key to learning about ISIS recruiting and conspiracy more broadly in India.

The issue comes as federal parliament prepares an inquiry into how Australia should advocate for the abolition of the death penalty worldwide.

Following Indonesia's executions of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, it was argued Australia's diplomatic approaches on the death sentence may be more effective if they are more consistent.

In its submission to the inquiry, Reprieve Australia calls for a whole of government strategy to underpin domestic policies.

Australia must ensure it doesn't send people back to countries where they might face the death penalty, and also that it won't facilitate the application of the death penalty by others, it says.

UN Special Rapporteur Christof Heyns, in a report released last week, also warned that states must be careful.

When offering financial or technical assistance to executing countries, "any such assistance must be offered only after obtaining guarantees that no death sentence will be imposed."

The inquiry will hold public hearings on dates yet to be announced.

Source: 9news.com.au, November 2, 2015

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