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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…

6 drug traffickers sentenced to death in West Java, Indonesia

Meth bust by Indonesia's BNN
The Cirebon District Court in West Java handed the death penalty on Wednesday to 6 of 9 defendants for dealing 40 kilograms of crystal methamphetamines and 180,000 ecstasy pills in March last year in a case that involved an international drug ring.

Presiding judge Mukhlis said the six defendants were proven guilty of smuggling drugs into the country for distribution.

"The defendants have violated Article 114( 2), Article 113(2), Article 112(2) and Article 132(1) of Law No. 35/2009 on narcotics," said Muklis, when reading out the verdict as quoted by Antara.

The death sentence was what the prosecutors demanded.

The 6 defendants were Ricky Gunawan, 34, Jusman, 52, Karun, aka Ahong, 40, Yanto, aka Abeng, 50, Sugianto, aka Acay, 29 and M. Rizki, 30. 2 other defendants, Hendri Unan, 28 and Gunawan Aminah, 60, avoided capital punishment but were both sentenced to 8 years in prison and fined Rp 1 billion (US$75,414).

In March last year, National Police detectives arrested 9 drug traffickers at a rest area by the Cikampek toll road.

Source: The Jakarta Post, January 12, 2017

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