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Will the Supreme Court Kill The Death Penalty This Term?

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Will the U.S. Supreme Court add the fate of the death penalty to a term already fraught with hot-button issues like partisan gerrymandering, warrantless surveillance, and a host of contentious First Amendment disputes?
That’s the hope of an ambitious Supreme Court petition seeking to abolish the ultimate punishment. But it runs headlong into the fact that only two justices have squarely called for a reexamination of the death penalty’s constitutionality.
Abel Hidalgo challenges Arizona’s capital punishment system—which sweeps too broadly, he says, because the state’s “aggravating factors” make 99 percent of first-degree murderers death-eligible—as well as the death penalty itself, arguing it’s cruel and unusual punishment.
He’s represented by former acting U.S. Solicitor General Neal Katyal—among the most successful Supreme Court practitioners last term. Hidalgo also has the support of several outside groups who filed amicus briefs on his behalf, notably one from a group including Ari…

Iran: Three Men and One Woman Hanged in One Day

Iran Human Rights (DEC 8 2015): On Sunday December 6, three men with alleged murder charges were reportedly hanged to death at Zahedan Central Prison and also one woman was reportedly hanged in Ghazvin Central Prison for allegedly murdering her husband.

According to close sources, the names of the three men are: Mohsen Piri, Mohsen Gomshadzehi and Aziz Sarani. 

They were reportedly among five prisoners who on Thursday December 3 were transferred from their cells to solitary confinement in preparation for their executions. 

The other two were returned to their cells after the plaintiffs on their case files granted them respite from hanging. Iranian official sources have been silent on the execution of the three men.

The Iranian official news site, Parsine, has identified the woman as F. Zanjanian. 

According to the official report, "Zanjanian" committed the act of murder in 2011 and was sentenced to death and 99 lashings by Iranian courts.

Source: Iran Human Rights, December 8, 2015

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