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Capital Punishment in the United States Explained

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In our Explainer series, Fair Punishment Project lawyers help unpackage some of the most complicated issues in the criminal justice system. We break down the problems behind the headlines - like bail, civil asset forfeiture, or the Brady doctrine - so that everyone can understand them. Wherever possible, we try to utilize the stories of those affected by the criminal justice system to show how these laws and principles should work, and how they often fail. We will update our Explainers monthly to keep them current. Read our updated explainer here.
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 -…

Indonesia will not execute a European this year: Attorney General

Serge Atlaoui, his wife Sabine and their son
Serge Atlaoui, his wife Sabine and their son
Indonesia will not execute a European this year, Indonesian Attorney General  H. M. Prasetyo said on Wednesday. 

Prasetyo thus confirmed that the death sentence against French drug convict Serge Atlaoui will not be carried out in the next and forthcoming round of executions.

Two foreign prisoners, one Nigerian and a Zimbabwean, will face the firing squad, Prasetyo said

Relief

Several foreigners sentenced to death for drug trafficking will therefore benefit from a reprieve in 2016. 

Serge Atlaoui was granted an eleventh-hour temporary stay of execution on technical grounds in May 2015.

"It's a relief, it's reassuring, but the fight is not over yet. And I can't possibly celebrate knowing that the relatives of the inmates to be executed will suffer," Serge's wife said Wednesday night.

Sabine Atlaoui travelled to Nusakambangan penal island on Monday, while uncertainty was still hanging over the fate of her husband who did not yet know whether he would be included in the third round of executions.

Eight executed in May 2015

"You can't imagine how happy I am to see you," the Frenchman said to his wife and five-year-old son he hasn't seen for a year.

Serge Atlaoui and Filipina drug mule Mary Jane Veloso were spared at the last moment in late May 2015. Eight were then executed by firing squad, including two Australians, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.

Source: Le Républicain Lorrain, Alain Morvan, translated from the French by DPN, July 13, 2016


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." - Oscar Wilde

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