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America Is Stuck With the Death Penalty for (At Least) a Generation

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With Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement, the national fight to abolish capital punishment will have to go local.
When the Supreme Court revived capital punishment in 1976, just four years after de facto abolishing it, the justices effectively took ownership of the American death penalty and all its outcomes. They have spent the decades since then setting its legal and constitutional parameters, supervising its general implementation, sanctioning its use in specific cases, and brushing aside concerns about its many flaws.
That unusual role in the American legal system is about to change. With Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court this summer, the Supreme Court will lose a heterodox jurist whose willingness to cross ideological divides made him the deciding factor in many legal battles. In cases involving the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment, his judgment often meant the difference between life and death for hundreds of death-row pr…

"Duterte Not Seeking Amnesty for Drug Convict Veloso": Indonesian VP

Rodrigo Duterte, left, and Joko Widodo, right.
Rodrigo Duterte, left, and Joko Widodo, right.
Jakarta. Vice President Jusuf Kalla is convinced that Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte's state visit to Indonesia on Friday (09/09) was not related to drug convict Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso.

Veloso, who is a Philippine citizen, was sentenced to death after she was caught with 2.6 kilograms of heroin at Adisucipto International Airport in Yogyakarta in April 2010.

Kalla believes Duterte's shoot-on-site policy against drug dealers indicates he would not defend Veloso.

"He [Duterte] has openly stated that he would shoot thousands of people involved in narcotics. To defend one person proven guilty [of drug crimes] is surely against his character," Kalla said in Jakarta on Friday.

However, it was earlier reported that Duterte would discuss amnesty for Veloso with President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo. Veloso's lawyer Agus Salim said he would provide Duterte with the legal files for the discussion.

Veloso's execution was put on hold last year because her testimony against alleged human trafficker Maria Christina Sergio was needed by the Philippine authorities.

During her trial, Veloso claimed that Sergio duped her into taking a suitcase to Indonesia after she lost her job in Malaysia. The suitcase was later found to have had drugs sewn into the lining.

Source: Jakarta Globe, September 9, 2016

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