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'Express lane to death': Texas seeks approval to speed up death penalty appeals, execute more quickly

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Texas is seeking to speed up executions with a renewed request to opt-in to a federal law that would shorten the legal process and limit appeals options for death-sentenced prisoners.
Defense attorneys worry it would lead to the execution of innocent people and - if it's applied retroactively, as Texas is requesting - it could potentially end ongoing appeals for a number of death row prisoners and make them eligible for execution dates.
"Opt-in would speed up the death penalty treadmill exponentially," said Kathryn Kase, an longtime defense attorney and former executive director of Texas Defender Services.
But a state attorney general spokeswoman framed the request to the Justice Department as a necessary way to avoid "stressful delays" and cut down on the "excessive costs" of lengthy federal court proceedings.
Robbie Kaplan, co-founder of the #TimesUp movement, says sweeping changes to laws in recent years have dissuaded attorneys from taking on har…

Pakistan: Six murder convicts hanged

A murder convict was hanged at the Faisalabad Central Jail on Tuesday. 

A spokesperson for the Prisons Department said Adeel Shahzad, a resident of Raza Abad, had killed his aunt Zahida Naseem and her 3 children on February 18, 2001, in a Pir Mehal police precinct. 

ATC Judge Raja Akhtar had issued black warrants for Shehzad. 

Muhammad Ashraf, alias Achoo, who had killed a man in 2000, was hanged in Sahiwal District Jail on Tuesday.


Source: Express Tribune, April 13, 2016


4 more executed in Pakistani jails

4 more prisoners, convicted of murder, were hanged in various jails in Pakistan on Wednesday.

The executions took place in the jails of Multan, Jhang and Sialkot in Punjab province and in Larkana in Sindh province.

A death row convict Anwarul Haq was executed in Multan for murdering his brother over a land dispute in year 2000, prison officials said.

Another prisoner Ghulam Farooq was hanged in Sialkot prison for killing 2 women and a man in a family feud in 1999.

In Jhang prison Muhammad Irfan was executed for killing a woman during a robbery in her home in 2006.

In Larkana jail Waris Mirbahar was hanged for the 1995 murder of a PIA employee during an attack on a cash van of the airlines, prison officials said.

Human rights group Amnesty International last week described Pakistan, with 326 hangings last year, as the world's 3rd most prolific country conducting executions after China and Iran.

Pakistan had ended a moratorium on the death penalty after Taliban attackers gunned down more than 150 people, most of them children, at a school in Peshawar on December 16, 2014.

The country had initially reinstated hangings only for those convicted of terrorism, but later the decision was extended to all capital offences.

Source: arynews.tv, April 13, 2016

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