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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

'They electrocuted me' says Indonesia's death-row prisoner nearing execution

Michael Titus Igweh
Michael Titus Igweh
A Nigerian man facing imminent execution in Indonesia tearfully told a court that police electrocuted his genitals to force him to confess to possessing heroin.

Michael Titus Igweh is among several prisoners on death row whom lawyers and human rights groups are frantically lobbying to save from the firing squad amid claims they were tortured and their legal cases riddled with corruption, errors and miscarriages of justice.

"I was constantly beaten, and my genitals electrocuted until I was helpless," the clothes importer, who was sentenced to death in 2003 for possessing 5.8 kilograms of heroin, told the Tangerang District Court in May. "In fact, I was threatened to be shot."

Sources have told Fairfax Media the third wave of executions in Indonesia could be held within days. It is understood the Nigerian and Pakistani embassies have now been notified that their nationals are among those to be killed.

Indonesian Attorney-General Muhammad Prasetyo reiterated on Friday the executions would be "soon" and would include Indonesians and possibly a woman. Mr Prasetyo had earlier said prisoners from Nigeria and Zimbabwe would be among those targeted.

In a further ominous sign the executions could be just days away, prison visits have this week been suspended to the penal island of Nusakambangan, where the prisoners will be strapped to wooden posts and shot in a field.

Fourteen drug offenders were executed in Indonesia last year, including Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, sparking an international backlash.

However the Indonesian government insists executions are necessary to combat a so-called drugs emergency.

"The public want it to be done soon," Attorney-General Prasetyo said on Friday. "We are getting more informed now and can see how drugs have affected our younger generation. We could just lose a generation."


Source: The Sydney Morning Telegraph, Jewel Topsfield, Amilia Rosa, Karuni Rompies, July 24, 2016


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