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States to try new ways of executing prisoners. Their latest idea? Opioids.

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The synthetic painkiller fentanyl has been the driving force behind the nation’s opioid epidemic, killing tens of thousands of Americans last year in overdoses. Now two states want to use the drug’s powerful properties for a new purpose: to execute prisoners on death row.
As Nevada and Nebraska push for the country’s first fentanyl-assisted executions, doctors and death penalty opponents are fighting those plans. They have warned that such an untested use of fentanyl could lead to painful, botched executions, comparing the use of it and other new drugs proposed for lethal injection to human experimentation.
States are increasingly pressed for ways to carry out the death penalty because of problems obtaining the drugs they long have used, primarily because pharmaceutical companies are refusing to supply their drugs for executions.
The situation has led states such as Florida, Ohio and Oklahoma to turn to novel drug combinations for executions. Mississippi legalized nitrogen gas this s…

As Lindsay Sandiford turns 60, supporter claims there is hope for Redcar death row gran

L. Sandiford (center) knitting with other inmate in a Kerobokan prison cell
Lindsay Sandiford (center) knitting with other inmates in a Kerobokan prison cell
As she marks what could be her final birthday, sources close to death row gran Lindsay Sandiford say she isn't about to be executed.

The convicted Redcar drug mule will spend her 60th birthday today in the squalid Indonesian prison she's languished in since she was sentenced to death in 2012.

There were fears that the birthday would be her last, with reports she may be among one of 16 people shot following the Muslim holiday of Eid.

However a supporter, who has flown to Bali to be with her on her birthday, has told the Gazette "Lindsay is not listed for execution."

Christie Buckingham of Bayside Church jetted in from Australia to spend time with her friend during what she said was a "very sensitive time" for the grandmother.

"At this stage she is concentrating on getting her appeal in place," she added.

Another senior source close to the case confirmed Sandiford is not scheduled to be 1 of the 16 prisoners executed in the latest round of executions.

"She is working on her appeal and still has legal avenues left which I expect her to use," said the source.

"Certainly there is no indication that she will be executed in the very near future."

Sandiford has been in Bali's notorious Kerobokan Prison since she admitted trying to smuggle cocaine worth 1.6m pounds on to the paradise island.

Despite her plight, it is understood she's shunned consular assistance since 2014.

Instead she has received backing from thousands of Facebook supporters as well as the church.

There had been hope she could be spared a trip to a beauty spot dubbed "death island", where the Government carry out executions.

Indonesian authorities had halted executions for "economic reasons" [after they resumed in 2015], with 2 of the mum's Australian friends [Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan] killed.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman said: "We oppose the death penalty in all circumstances and have made repeated representations on the issue to the Indonesian government at the highest levels."

Source: gazettelive.co.uk, June 25, 2016

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