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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…

Maldivian and international human rights groups urge Maldives President to halt execution plans

Maldives
Leading Maldivian and international human rights organizations are calling on the President of the Maldives to halt plans to break a 60 year moratorium on executions.

A group of organizations – Reprieve, Amnesty International, the Anti-Death Penalty Asia Network, FORUM-ASIA, Maldivian Democracy Network, Transparency Maldives and Uthema – have sent a joint letter to the President of the Maldives, Abdulla Yameen, asking him to “change course and halt these planned executions.”

President Yameen has repeatedly spoken of his desire to carry out executions, despite the country’s Parliament having rejected a proposal to reinstate the death penalty in 2013. This week, the President suggested that executions would begin in September. There are concerns for three men who have had their death sentences confirmed by the Supreme Court.

In their letter to the President, the group of organizations said: “There is mounting evidence that those in line for execution – Hussein Humaam Ahmed, Ahmed Murrath and Mohammed Nabeel – have not received fair trials.”

The letter adds: “You have claimed that the introduction of executions after 60 years is necessary to end violent crime. But all the evidence shows that that the death penalty does not have a unique deterrent effect.[...] The death penalty will do nothing to make the Maldives safer.”

The intervention follows the recent raising of similar concerns by experts, including Professor Tariq Ramadan of Oxford University; and investors in the Maldives, such as Sir Richard Branson.

Commenting, Deputy Director of Reprieve Harriet McCulloch said: “President Yameen’s executions plan will do nothing to make the Maldives safer. With reports of forced ‘confessions’ and concerns about unfair trials, it’s clear there could be a grave miscarriage of justice if executions go ahead. Breaking a moratorium that has held for half a century will deal a terrible blow to the rule of law in the country. President Yameen must urgently listen to the growing calls from inside and outside the Maldives, and drop these ill-advised proposals.”

Source: Reprieve, August 10, 2017

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