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The Justice Department is proceeding with plans for more federal executions in the closing days of President Trump's administration, including two scheduled shortly before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden. Attorney General William Barr announced the moves, connected with what he called "staggeringly brutal murders," in a statement late Friday. The Justice Department said the directives amounted to a continuation of its policy since last year when it relaunched federal executions after an informal moratorium that had been in place for 17 years. If the Justice Department plan moves forward, 13 people will have faced death by lethal injection during the Trump administration. Legal experts who follow capital punishment said that would be the most since the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who served 12 years in office before his death in 1945. RELATED |  U.S.: Barr's Justice Department Prepares To End Trump's Term With an Execution Spree Robert Du

Iran | Four Executions in A Day

The Iranian authorities hanged five prisoners in Rajaishahr and Qa’en prisons in Alborz and South Khorasan provinces respectively at dawn on October 13. 

The judiciary had sentenced four of the victims to the death penalty for alleged homicide and Moharebeh [waging war against God] by armed robbery. These four persons were among ten prisoners who were transferred to solitary confinement on October 11.

However, all of them were sentenced during unjust proceedings and each one had a harrowing story, revealing the judiciary’s cruelty. These victims were Mohammad Yadi, Mehdi Ali, Saman Yamini, and Mehrshad Barahuei.

Mohammad Yadi Was on Death Row for 12 Years for Doing Nothing


Mohammad Yadi had committed no crime. He accepted responsibility for his brother’s crime to free his brother. His brother managed to escape the country. However, he died during an accident in the UK.

He was a fugitive for 12 years and remained on death row for 12 years. The plaintiff and the court were aware that Mohammad was innocent. But the state security forces captured him and hanged him.

The Court Acquitted Mehdi Ali, But the Noose Didn’t


Mehdi Ali had stolen jewelry and was sentenced to the death penalty. The court finally accepted his repentance, and the complainants forgave him. He was waiting for the court to free him. However, surprisingly, prison guards took him to the gallows.

Sasan Protested, the Court Executed Both Brothers


Saman Yamini’s story too was harrowing. “Saman and his brother Sasan were detained for murdering an old woman during a robbery. The court initially sentenced Sasan to death and Saman to life imprisonment. Sasan complained about the sentence. Finally, the appeals court sentenced both brothers to death due to the complainant’s influence,” a source said.

“[Authorities] executed Sasan two years ago. Today, they hanged Saman. They were killed while forensics had confirmed that the victim had died of heart attack and fear,” the source added.

Baluch Prisoner Was Illegally Executed


Additionally, the authorities executed a Baluch prisoner Mehrshad Barahuei in Qa’en Prison, northeastern Iran, for drug smuggling. “Mehrshad had no criminal background. Given the law abolishing the death penalty, the sentence of unarmed transfer of opium—from few kilos to hundreds of kilos— is imprisonment and he should not have been executed,” a source said.

According to article 4 of the Penal Code, anyone who transfers and preserves over five kilograms of opium is to be punished with a 30 to 50-million-rial [$100-166.66] fine and 10-25 years in prison.

A means of a terrifying society


Iranian officials indeed use executions as a means of a terrifying society. In this context, as they face more social protests, they hastily kill people who had been convicted in flawed justice procedures. 

Under the ayatollahs’ rule, the judiciary sentences alleged murderers to death without scrutinizing the reasons and evidence in a fair proceeding.

According to the No to Prison – No to Execution human rights center, the Iranian government has executed at least 158 prisoners in less than seven months. This number is separate from that of secret executions, victims of torture, and the SSF’s excessive use of force in cities and borders, leading to hundreds of deaths per year.

Source: irannewsupdate.com, Mostafa, October 19, 2020


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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