No Second Chances: What to Do After a Botched Execution

Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. The state shouldn't get a second chance.
The pathos and problems of America's death penalty were vividly on display yesterday when Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. Immediately after its failure Gov. John Kasich set June 5, 2019, as a new execution date.
This plan for a second execution reveals a glaring inadequacy in the legal standards governing botched executions in the United States.
Campbell was tried and sentenced to die for murdering 18-year-old Charles Dials during a carjacking in 1997. After Campbell exhausted his legal appeals, he was denied clemency by the state parole board and the governor.
By the time the state got around to executing Campbell, he was far from the dangerous criminal of 20 years ago. As is the case with many of America's death-row inmates, the passage of time had inflicted its own punishments.
The inmate Ohio strapped onto the gurney was a 69-year-old man afflicted with serious ailm…

Death row prisoners in limbo in Indonesia after unexplained stay of execution

Isolation cells on Nusakambangan island, West Java, Indonesia
Isolation cells on Nusakambangan island, West Java, Indonesia
Jakarta: A condemned Pakistani man has spoken of his suffering as his life remains in limbo more than two months after he was mysteriously spared from an Indonesian firing squad.

Garment trader Zulfiqar Ali was among 14 convicted drug offenders slated to be executed on April 29 as part of Indonesia's so-called "war on drugs".

But 10 prisoners, including Mr Ali, were given a last-minute stay of execution for reasons never explained by the Indonesian government.

"I am in darkness until now," Mr Ali told Fairfax Media via his lawyer.

"I am suffering for a long time and still this is a time of suffering for me."

Mr Ali was arrested on drug trafficking charges in 2004 after an Indian acquaintance, Gurdip Singh, named him as the owner of 300 grams of heroin.

An internal probe into Mr Ali's case, ordered by the Indonesian government, found he was a victim of conspiracy and likely to be innocent.

The investigation by then director-general of human rights Hafid Abbas, which found evidence of human rights violations and abuse of power at all levels, was ignored by former president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

"I have sent a very strong letter to President Jokowi three days ago and strongly advised the president to immediately provide clemency to Zulfiqar Ali," Dr Hafid, who is now a commissioner with the National Commission for Human Rights told Fairfax Media.

However a spokesman for the Attorney-General, Muhammad Rum, said the executions would still be carried out. "The plan is still on, it was only postponed," he told Fairfax Media. "We haven't decided on the time."

Since his death was mysteriously postponed, Mr Ali, who has cirrhosis, has been ferried between hospital and a jail on Nusakambangan, the island where Indonesia carries out its executions.

He and another of the condemned prisoners, Indonesian Merri Utami, have repeatedly asked to be transferred back to the jails where they were incarcerated prior to July's executions.

Ms Utami, whom supporters say was a victim of human trafficking, has been kept in an isolation cell at a jail in Cilacap, the closest town to Nusakambangan.

"She is in isolation 24/7 except for two hours of church time each week," her lawyer, Afif Abdul Oyim told Fairfax Media.

"Her daughter spoke to her and told us her health has been impacted by the isolation. Emotionally, she is still traumatised by the execution day. Sometimes she will hear her cell doors opening, like the one she heard during execution night. She has no activities all day in isolation. It adds to the stress."

But Mr Rum said the nine male prisoners would remain on Nusakambangan and Ms Utami would stay at the women's jail in Cilacap.

"They are already there, so they stay there," he said.

Click here to read the full article

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald, Jewel Topsfield and Amilia Rosa, October 4, 2016

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