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The Aum Shinrikyo Executions: Why Now?

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With the execution of Aum Shinrikyo leader and six of his followers, Japan looks to leave behind an era of tragedy. 
On July 6, 2018, Japanese authorities executed seven members of the religious movement Aum Shinrikyo (Aum true religion, or supreme truth), which carried out the 1995 Tokyo subway sarin attack and a series of other atrocities. None of the seven of the executed men were directly involved in releasing the gas on that tragic day; four of those who did remain under a death sentence, and their executions may be imminent.
The seven executed were involved in planning and organizing the various crimes committed by Aum. Asahara Shoko (born Matsumoto Chizuo), was the founder and leader of the movement, having developed the doctrinal system instrumental to Aum’s violence and its concept of a final cosmic war of good (Aum) against evil (the corrupt material world and everyone — from the Japanese government to the general public — who lived in it). Asahara is believed to have given …

Federal appeal denied for Tennessee’s only woman on death row

Christa Pike
Christa Pike
Christa Pike was convicted and sentenced to death in the 1995 death of Colleen Slemmer.

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – After more than two decades on death row, a federal court has denied to overturn Christa Pike’s conviction and death penalty sentence.

A federal court ruled that Pike doesn’t have grounds for a federal appeal and that she has exhausted Tennessee state appeals. 

 Pike was convicted in the 1995 death of Colleen Slemmer, 19. 

Prosecutors say Pike tortured Slemmer, beat her to death and then kept a piece of her skull as a trophy.

Pike appealed her conviction and death penalty sentence in 2012. Slemmer’s mother has been fighting to get back the rest of her remains, which are being held as evidence, for a proper burial.

A spokesperson for the Tennessee Attorney General’s Office says Pike has completed all appeals at the state level.

Source: wate.com, March 10, 2016

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