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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 -…

India: President Pranab Mukherjee rejects mercy petitions of three more death-row convicts, taking his tally of rejections to 37

President Pranab Mukherjee
Indian President Pranab Mukherjee
President Pranab Mukherjee rejected on August 7 mercy petitions from three death-row convicts, Shabnam, Jasvir Singh and Vikram Singh. 

The information about these rejections was uploaded on the website of the President’s secretariat only today. 

While Shabnam’s mercy petition was received in President’s Secretariat from the Ministry of Home Affairs, on March 31, those of Jasvir Singh and Vikram Singh were received on June 23. 

Shabnam, along with her husband, Salim were co-accused in a murder case, that was tried against them on the allegations that they had committed murders of seven persons who were the members of Shabnam’s family during 14-15 April, 2008. 

Their death sentences were confirmed by the Supreme Court on May 15, 2015. 

Shabnam is lodged in Moradabad jail, while Salim is in Agra jail. Their only child, delivered by Shabnam in jail, has been given in adoption. 

Jasvir Singh and Vikram Singh, now in Patiala Central jail, were convicted and sentenced to death, for the murder of 16-year-old school boy, Abhi Verma, in 2005. 

The Supreme Court commuted Jasvir Singh’s wife, Sonia’s sentence to life term in the same case in January 2010. 

In August last year, a three-member Bench headed by Justice TS Thakur dismissed their appeal, challenging the validity of Section 364A of the IPC, that provides for death penalty for the crime of kidnapping someone for ransom.

Source: Live Law, August 14, 2016.

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