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Innocent on Death Row? New Evidence Casts Doubt on Convictions

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Rodney Reed’s death sentence was suspended. But researchers say other current cases raise similar doubt about the guilt of the accused.
The number of executions in the United States remains close to nearly a three-decade low. And yet the decline has not prevented what those who closely track the death penalty see as a disturbing trend: a significant number of cases in which prisoners are being put to death, or whose execution dates are near, despite questions about their guilt.
Rodney Reed, who came within days of execution in Texas before an appeals court suspended his death sentence on Friday, has been the most high-profile recent example, receiving support from Texas lawmakers of both parties and celebrities like Rihanna and Kim Kardashian West, who urged a new examination of the evidence.
Mr. Reed has long maintained that he did not commit the 1996 murder for which he was convicted. And in recent months, new witnesses came forward pointing toward another possible suspect: the dead…

Five Hanged in Northern Iran, One in Public, Four at Ghezel Hesar on Drug Charges

Public hanging in Iran (file photo)
Public hanging in Iran (file photo)
Five prisoners hanged in northern Iran in the span of two days: one in public on murder charges and four at Ghezel Hesar Prison on drug charges.

Iran Human Rights (May 5 2016): A prisoner with murder charges was reportedly hanged in public in the city of Nur (located in the northern province of Mazandaran) on the morning of Monday May 2. State-run agency, Iran News, has identified the prisoner who was hanged in public as "Avaz". 

On Tuesday May 3, four prisoners with drug related charges were hanged at Ghezel Hesar Prison (located in the northern city of Karaj). 

According to close sources, these four prisoners have been identified as: Reza Hosseini, Majid Imani, Abdolhamid Bameri, and Ahmad Altafi. Reza Hosseini was reportedly transferred to Ghezel Hesar from Tehran Central Prison (also known as Fashafouye) for his execution. 

Iranian official sources, include state media and the Judiciary, have been silent about these four executions.

Iran Human Rights (May 3 2016): On Sunday May 1, one prisoner was reportedly hanged at Nahavand Prison (in the western province of Hamadan) and two prisoners were reportedly hanged at Mashhad Central Prison (in the northeastern province of Razavi Khorasan).

According to a report by the Judiciary in Hamadan, the prisoner hanged at Nahavand was executed on murder charges. The report identifies the prisoner only by the initials, M.R.

The state-run news site, Rokna, reported on the executions of the two unrelated prisoners in Mashhad, but did not publish their names or initials. According to the report, one of the prisoners was hanged on murder charges while the other was a 25-year-old hanged on rape charges.

Source: Iran Human Rights, May 5, 2016

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