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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 -…

Two Bahraini Men at Imminent and Renewed Risk of Execution

Mohamed Ramadhan Issa Ali Hussain and Hussain Ali Moosa Hussain Mohamed are at imminent risk of execution following the execution of three men on 15 January 2017.

Their death sentences were upheld by the Court of Cassation on 16 November 2015 and have been passed to the King who has the authority to ratify the sentences, commute them or grant a pardon. 

Mohamed Ramadhan and Hussain Ali Moosa are now at imminent and renewed risk of execution. 

After a nearly seven-year hiatus, Bahrain resumed executions on 15 January when it executed three men whose death sentences, in a grossly unfair trial, were confirmed by the Court of Cassation on 9 January and speedily ratified by the King.

Mohamed Ramadhan and Hussain Ali Moosa were sentenced to death on 29 December 2014 for the killing of a policeman, who died in a bomb explosion in al-Deir, a village northeast of Manama, on 14 February 2014. 

Their trial was grossly unfair and relied on forced “confessions”. Both men did not have access to their lawyers during their interrogation at the Criminal Investigations Directorate, where Amnesty International continues to document the use of torture and other ill-treatment, and later told their lawyers that they had been tortured in the first few days following their arrest in February 2014. 

Mohamed Ramadhan said that he had been detained incommunicado and beaten and given electric shocks to force him to “confess” but were unsuccessful. Hussain Ali Moosa said he was coerced to “confess” and incriminate Mohamed Ramadhan after being suspended by his limbs from the ceiling, given electric-shocks and beaten repeatedly for several days.

Despite the two men’s lawyers lodging complaints with the Special investigations Unit within the Public Prosecution regarding the two men’s torture allegations, they received no response. 

Mohamed Ramadhan’s wife and a US-based NGO also lodged complaints with the Ombudsman’s office but it failed to investigate his torture allegations for two years and his wife has not been informed about the conclusion of its investigation.

➽ Click here to take action NOW (on Amnesty International's website)

Source: Amnesty International, January 18, 2019

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