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To beat the clock on the expiration of its lethal injection drug supply, this past April, Arkansas tried to execute 8 men over 1 days. The stories told in frantic legal filings and clemency petitions revealed a deeply disturbing picture. Ledell Lee may have had an intellectual disability that rendered him constitutionally ineligible for the death penalty, but he had a spate of bad lawyers who failed to timely present evidence of this claim -…

Five Hanged in Northern Iran on Drug Charges

On the morning of Saturday April 9, 5 prisoners were reportedly hanged at Rasht's Lakan Prison (in the provine of Gilan, northern Iran) on drug charges.

The prisoners had reportedly been transferred out of their wards on Thursday April 7 and taken to solitary confinement cells in preparation for their executions.

According to close sources, Rashid Kouhi, Seyed Javad Mirzadeh and Hossein Farhadi are the names of 3 of the prisoners. 

Iran Human Rights is in the process of investigating the identities of the 2 other prisoners. 

All 5 prisoners were reportedly on death row for drug related offenses.

According to Amnesty International, 36-year-old Rashid Kouhi was arrested in September 2011 and sentenced to death by the revolutionary court in Rudbar (a county in Gilan) for possession and trafficking 800 grams of methamphetamine. 

Close sources say prison authorities contacted Kouhi's family on April 7 and instructed them to come in for their last visit with him on Friday April 8 before his scheduled execution the next day.

Iranian authorities have admitted multiple times in the past that the death penalty has not decreased the volume of drug crimes in Iran, but Iranian authorities still continue to hang prisoners on drug charges. 

Human rights groups, including Iran Human Rights, have reported close to a thousand executions carried out in Iran in 2015.

 According to the annual death penalty report by Iran Human Rights, 66% of the executions carried out in 2015 in Iran were for drug related offenses.

Source: Iran Human Rights, April 10, 2016

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