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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 -…

Japan: Ex-gang boss on death row charged with another murder

Yakuza
TOKYO: Police have charged a former gang boss on death row with the murder of a man in 1996, his second indictment for murder since the finalization of his conviction over a fatal shooting rampage in 2003, police sources said.

Osamu Yano, the 68-year-old former head of a group affiliated with the Sumiyoshikai crime syndicate, was indicted in May on suspicion of murdering a business owner in 1998, after his death sentence was finalized in 2014.

According to the Metropolitan Police Department, Yano and three members of the yakuza group murdered Shizuo Tsugawa, a 60-year-old real estate worker from Isehara, Kanagawa Prefecture, in a car in August 1996.

A senior member of the group instructed another ranked member to kill Tsugawa, who was involved in a land ownership dispute with the gang, and a subordinate member is suspected of having actually carried out the murder.

Yano allegedly ordered the three gang members, all of whom are now dead, to dump the body immediately after the killing, suggesting his involvement in the murder plan, although Yano has denied the allegations.

Tsugawa's family reported him missing to the Kanagawa prefectural police after he answered the door to one of the gang members dressed as a delivery man.

After Yano sent two letters indicating his involvement in the murder to the Shibuya Police Station between May and June 2015, the Tokyo police searched a mountain in Isehara and discovered the body in April last year.

Tsugawa was apparently taken to the site by car immediately after leaving home. The body was in the same clothes that Tsugawa was wearing when he was last seen.

Yano was sentenced to death over the rampage in which a rival gangster and three customers were killed at a bar in Maebashi, north of Tokyo, in January 2003.

Source: Japan Today, July 6, 2017

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