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USA | The Dreadful Failure of Lethal Injection

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Editor’s Note: This column is the product of a research collaboration with five Amherst College students, Mattea Denny, Nicolas Graber-Mitchell, Greene Ko, Rose Mroczka, and Lauren Pelosi. America’s death penalty continues to fall out of favor, a well-known fact. When the year started, eight executions were scheduled for February and March in five different states. But all of them are now on hold, and two of the three executions that were set for April already have been halted. While advocacy for the end of the death penalty has played some role, it is the decomposition of the lethal injection paradigm that has truly driven down execution numbers. We have now seen a decade of chaos and experimentation as death penalty jurisdictions tried to find reliable sources of drugs to carry out executions. States rolled out new drugs, but things did not go smoothly. The number of mishaps associated with lethal injection increased substantially. From 2010-2020, an already problematic method of ex

Indonesia | West Java court sentences Iranian-led drugs gang to death

A district court in West Java has handed death sentences to a gang of more than a dozen drug traffickers, including an Iranian couple and a Pakistani man, the prosecutor's office said.

A total of 13 suspects -- three Iranians, a Pakistani and nine Indonesians -- were ordered to be executed by firing squad for the gang's role in smuggling about 400 kilogrammes (880 pounds) of methamphetamine, according to authorities.

The ruling was delivered by videolink late Tuesday in West Java's Sukabumi city, where members of the drugs ring were caught last June, due to Covid-19 restrictions.


Iranian Hossein Salari Rashid led the smuggling plot, said Bambang Yunianto, head of the Sukabumi prosecutors' office.

"There are 4 foreigners in the group with (Rashid) the mastermind of the crime. He was sentenced together with his wife," Bambang said.

Tuesday's ruling was a record for the number of drug traffickers sentenced to death at one time in Indonesia, Amnesty International said.

It brought to 30 the number of people given the death penalty in the Southeast Asian nation this year, including several foreigners, the rights group said.

Most were drug trafficking cases, it added.

Indonesia has some of the world's toughest anti-drug laws, but it has held off conducting executions for several years.

In 2019, A French drug trafficker briefly on death row saw his sentence reduced to a long prison term on appeal.

A year earlier, eight Taiwanese smugglers were sentenced to death by an Indonesian court after being caught with around a tonne of crystal methamphetamine.

Several foreign traffickers have been executed by firing squad, including Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in 2015, a case that sparked diplomatic outrage and a call to abolish the death penalty.

The pair were the accused ringleaders of the so-called Bali Nine heroin smuggling gang.

Source: The Jakarta Post, Staff, April 7, 2021


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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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