Iran | Death Penalty According to Shariah Law

Chapter III of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran contains provisions related to the rights of the people.  In this Chapter, Article 22 states: “The dignity, life, property, rights, domicile, and occupations of people may not be violated, unless sanctioned by law.” However, the number of crimes punishable by death in Iran is among the highest in the world. Charges such as “adultery, incest, rape, sodomy, insulting the Prophet Mohammad and other great Prophets, possessing or selling illicit drugs, theft and alcohol consumption for the 4th time, premeditated murder, moharebeh (waging war against God), efsad-fil-arz (corruption on earth), baghy (armed rebellion), fraud and human trafficking” are capital offences.[1] Many of the charges punishable by death cannot be considered as “most serious crimes” and do not meet the ICCPR standards.[2] Murder, drug possession and trafficking, rape/sexual assault, moharebeh and efsad-fil-arz and baghy are the most common charges resulting

‘I’m nothing like that person’: Texas death row inmate makes video plea for clemency

Quintin Jones, who is scheduled to be executed 19 May, appealed to the governor in a video published in the New York Times

The death row prisoner stares into the camera from behind bullet-proof glass, and with a pained expression delivers a message to the Republican governor of Texas, Greg Abbott.

“I know you don’t know me,” Quintin Jones begins. “I’m writing this letter to ask you if you could find it in your heart to grant me clemency, so I don’t get executed on 19 May. I got two weeks to live, starting today.”

The plea from a condemned Black man to one of America’s staunchest advocates of capital punishment must rank as among the more unusual last-minute attempts by an inmate to save their own life. It is made in the form of a four-minute video published in the opinion section of the New York Times, filmed from death row in Livingston, Texas.

As appeals for mercy go, this one is a long shot. In his six years in office, Abbott has only granted clemency once: to a white inmate, Thomas Whitaker.

The Republican-controlled state is gearing itself up as the pandemic lifts for a spree of judicial killings of the sort that have earned it the reputation of being the death penalty capital of the US.

Over the course of the year it plans to carry out five executions including that of Jones, out of a nationwide total of seven.

Despite the odds, Jones makes a spirited case for sparing his life. He talks about how he grew up “in the hood as a Black male” and was taught “to be tough and hard, macho. So yeah I had a messed-up childhood. Yeah, I had drug addiction, alcohol addiction. Yeah I hated myself.”

He was arrested in 1999 for beating his great-aunt Berthena Bryant, 83, to death and stealing $30 to pay for drugs. He was alleged to have been involved in two other murders – for which he has never been charged.

Jones tells the Texas governor he is not the person he was at 20 when he killed his great-aunt, a crime he has admitted.

“I’m nothing like that person,” he says. “I became a man on death row, so now you killing the man, and not the child.”

The prisoner promises that if Abbott shows mercy, he will spend the rest of his natural life in prison bettering himself and others around him.

“The mistakes I made – it’s mistakes, and it’s not something definitely solid about who I am. I wouldn’t be one of those that, you know, in 10, 20 years, you say ‘I regret letting him live.’”

Jones beat his great-aunt to death with a baseball bat she kept for her own protection. His other great-aunt, Bryant’s younger sister Mattie Long, has forgiven him.

Long has also written to Abbott, supporting Jones’s bid for clemency.

“Quintin can’t bring [my sister] back,” she said. “I can’t bring her back. I am writing this to ask you to please spare Quintin’s life.”

Source: theguardian.com, Ed Pilkington, May 10, 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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