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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…

Iran: More Than 12 Prisoners Scheduled For Execution The Coming Days

Iran Human Rights (July 11 2016): After a short break on the occasion of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the executions have resumed in Iran. At least 12 prisoners are scheduled to be executed in three different Iranian prisons in the coming days.

According to Iran Human Rights' (IHR) sources 10-13 prisoners of Rajaishahr prison (Karaj, west of Tehran) have been transferred to solitary confinement in preparation for execution. 

The prisoners who are all convicted of murder were transferred to solitary confinement on Sunday July 10 and are scheduled to be executed on Wednesday (12-13 July).

Six of the prisoners are identified as: Saeed Javad, Hassan Ghadimi and Mohammad Akbari from Ward 1, Faribors Azizpour, Hassan Mahdilou and Seyed Mohammad Taheri from hall 3 of Section 10 of Rajaishahr prison.

According to information received by IHR one prison identified as "Hadi Pashaei" has been transferred to solitary confinement in the prison of Maragheh (Northwestern Iran) in preparation of execution in the coming days. He is allegedly convicted of drug-related charges and was arrested 6 years ago. 

Four other prisoners from the same prison, identified as "Vali Samani" and "Mehdi Samani" (brothers), "Mehdi Baziari" and "Masoud Ghasemzadeh" are scheduled to be executed in near future. Also these prisoners are convicted of drug-related charges.

The Website of the "Human Rights Activists News Agency" (HRANA) reported yesterday that one prisoner identified as "Mehdi Pak Goftar" is scheduled to be executed in the prison of Ilam (western Iran). The prisoner is convicted of drug-related charges and the execution is scheduled for this week, said the report.

Source: Iran Human Rights, July 12, 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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