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Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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Update: Robert Pruett was executed by lethal injection on Thursday.
Robert Pruett is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas Thursday. He has never had a chance to live outside a prison as an adult. Taking his life is a senseless wrong that shows how badly the justice system fails juveniles.
Mr. Pruett was 15 years old when he last saw the outside world, after being arrested as an accomplice to a murder committed by his own father. Now 38, having been convicted of a murder while incarcerated, he will be put to death. At a time when the Supreme Court has begun to recognize excessive punishments for juveniles as unjust, Mr. Pruett’s case shows how young lives can be destroyed by a justice system that refuses to give second chances.
Mr. Pruett’s father, Sam Pruett, spent much of Mr. Pruett’s early childhood in prison. Mr. Pruett and his three siblings were raised in various trailer parks by his mother, who he has said used drugs heavily and often struggled to feed the children. Wh…

Malaysia: 2 brothers to be executed as planned after short-lived stay

Suthar and Rames Batumalai
Suthar and Rames Batumalai
The execution of 2 brothers convicted for murder is now set to proceed as planned at the Kajang Prison.

The 2 - 44-year-old Rames and 39-year-old Suthar Batumalai - were originally due to be executed on Friday morning, but had received a stay at the 11th hour.

Speaking in a statement in response to this development, Malaysian Bar president Steven Thiru said on Friday that the lawyers for the brothers were now exploring further avenues to support their petition for clemency.

Attempts to contact lawyers acting for the brothers have been unsuccessful.

"Sufficient time and opportunity must be given for them to exhaust this fresh ground before any sentence is meted out," said Thiru.

He added that the brothers must not be denied due process, and the execution of the death penalty must never be rushed or expedited.

"The Malaysian Bar urges the Government to allow the clemency proceedings to be completed, and to commute the sentences of death by hanging, to life imprisonment," he said.

Rames and Suthar had on Thursday submitted a clemency application through their lawyers to the Negri Sembilan Pardons Board.

The brothers were sentenced to the mandatory death penalty under Section 302 of the Penal Code in 2010 after being found guilty of a murder they committed in 2006.

Thiru added that a moratorium should be placed on all executions pending the outcome of the Government's ongoing review of the death penalty.

He also issued a fresh condemnation of Malaysia's mandatory death penalty, saying that it was "not acceptable for the state to take a life for a life".

Source: thestar.com.my, February 24, 2016


Spare Rames Batumalai, Suthar Batumalai from death penalty, urges Bar


The Malaysian Bar has been informed that the execution of brothers Rames Batumalai, 44, and Suthar Batumalai, 39, which had been scheduled to take place at Kajang Prison on 24 February 2017 and was then stayed at the eleventh hour, is now to proceed.

The brothers were sentenced to the mandatory death penalty under Section 302 of the Penal Code in April 2010 after they were found guilty of murder. We do not wish to comment on the merits of the case against them, nor do we condone or excuse the crime for which they were convicted.

The Malaysian Bar abhors and condemns the death penalty, in particular the mandatory death penalty. Sentences imposed on offenders must be proportionate to the gravity of offences committed, for the punishment to be just and effective.

However, it is never acceptable for the state to take a life for a life. The act of repaying one act of inhumanity with another is primitive and barbaric.

We are informed that the lawyers for the brothers are currently exploring a further or a new avenue to support their petition for clemency. Sufficient time and opportunity must be given for them to exhaust these fresh grounds before any sentence is meted out. The brothers must not be denied due process, and the execution of the death penalty must never be rushed or expedited.

The Malaysian Bar urges the government to allow the clemency proceedings to be completed and to commute the sentences of death by hanging, to life imprisonment.

Further, we repeat our call to the government to declare and implement an immediate moratorium on any and all executions, pending the outcome of the government’s reported ongoing review of the death penalty.

Source: Aliran, Steven Thiru, February 24, 2017. Mr. Thiru is president of the Malaysian Bar.


Lorry attendant sent to gallows for drug trafficking


A lorry attendant was sentenced to death by the High Court here today after he was found guilty of drug trafficking at Taman Puteri, Kluang near here last year.

Judicial commissioner Muhammad Jamil Hussin meted down the sentence on R. Karuppu Samy, 36, after the defence failed to raise any reasonable doubts on the prosecution's case.

Muhammad Jamil, in his ruling, said the accused's statement that he was not aware of the existence of a black box containing the drugs was clearly a denial.

The accused was charged with trafficking in cannabis weighing 657 grams in a house at No 46, Jalan Sutera 2/6, Taman Puteri, Kluang near here at 12.10am on March 20 last year.

He was charged under Section 39B(1)(a) of the Dangerous Drugs Act which carries a death sentence upon conviction.

A total of 12 prosecution witnesses and 2 defence witnesses testified during the trial.

The prosecution was conducted by deputy public prosecutor Rasyidah Murni Adzmi while the accused was represented by counsel Salmi Hamdan Sabran.

Source: themalaymailonline.com, February 25, 2017

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