Capital Punishment in the United States Explained

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 -…

Iran: Juvenile Offender Executed in Kerman Prison, Another At Risk in Kermanshah

The Iranian judiciary has executed a juvenile offender who was just 16 years old at the time of the crime for which he received a capital sentence.

Arman Bahr Asemani was hanged the morning of Monday, January 16 in Kerman Prison along with an older co-defendant, Shams Allah R., despite the protest of his lawyer and civil society activists.

Born February 10, 1997, Asemani was a legal minor at the time of the 2012 homicide for which he and Allah R. were arrested and charged.

The Iranian press has focused its coverage of the case on Allah R., the legal adult, with scarce reference to Asemani, reports HRANA.

The capital sentences were carried out as another juvenile offender (whose name has not been made public) at imminent risk of execution for his alleged role in a 2012 stabbing homicide has been brought to global attention by United Nations officials.

Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran Asma Jahangir, Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions Agnes Callamard, and Chairperson of the Committee on the Rights of the Child Benyam Dawit Mezmur sharply criticized the judiciary’s conduct in a joint statement Monday: “The Iranian authorities must immediately halt the execution of this juvenile and annul the death sentence against [the juvenile defendant] in compliance with international standards for the imposition of this form of punishment.”

Abdorrahman Boroumand Foundation has documented at least 122 executions of juvenile offenders in Iran since the beginning of 2000. Our juvenile offender project provides an in-depth look at the Iranian judiciary’s continued policy of executing such offenders, a practice which clearly violates the country’s international legal commitments.

➤ Read the original Persian reporting from HRANA.

Source: ABF blog, January 17, 2017

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