September 29, 2017
IDPN 2017 Issue 39
Iran: On Sunday, September 24, 2017, 42 Sunni Muslims were executed on charges of terrorism. Exact crimes ranged from killing members of security forces to detonating car bombs. This mass execution was criticized by Amnesty International.
On Tuesday, September 26, 2017, Javad Kheyyeri was executed by hanging at Urmia Central Prison. Javad was convicted of drug trafficking and the murder of a police officer.
On Tuesday, September 26, 2017, and unidentified 27-year-old male was executed by hanging at Yasuj Central Prison. The man was executed for murdering another individual with his car over a tribal dispute.
Kenya: James Muchangi has been sentenced to death for stealing a toothbrush and toothpaste. In 2008, James robbed a man with a sharpe, knife-like object, stealing a bag that contained Sh16, a toothbrush, and toothpaste. The victim was also cut on the face. James alleges that he was framed and has recently had his appeal denied.
Three death sentences have been upheld by the Court of Appeals. The three men, Julius Mugambi, Edward Mburu, and Francis Maina, were convicted of attempting to steal pineapples worth Sh1,500. During the attempted robbery, the three men threatened security guards with machetes and injured an animal. Reportedly, they never escaped with the fruit.
Pakistan: Army Chief Qamar Jawed Bajwa has approved the death penalty for four men convicted of terrorism. The men were involved in the attacking, kidnapping, and killing of soldiers. Twenty-one individuals were killed in the attack.
District and Sessions Judge Cahudhry Muhammad Tariq Javed has sentenced Maqsood Ahmed and Arshad to death for the murder of Muhammad Shafiq during a robbery. Another individual, Munir Gul, was injured in the robbery attempt. Ahmed and Arshad also received a 20 year prison sentence to other crimes, and a fine of Rs1 million.
Singapore: Fifty-four-year-old Hamzah Ibrahim was convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced to death, even though he had cooperated with authorities. Due to his cooperation, the court had the option to not impose the death penalty, however, the court ruled that due to the seriousness of the offense, he was given the death sentence. Another individual in the joint trial, Muhammad Farid Sudi was found to be only a carrier and was awarded a lesser sentence of life in prison and 15 strokes of the cane for his help. A third individual, Tika Pesik, was also determined to be only a courier, however, he did not help the police and was sentenced to death.
Sudan: Twenty-one-year-old Asim Omer has been sentenced to death by hanging for killing a police officer during a protest last year. His verdict has also triggered protests. Asim was found guilty of premeditated murder and the family of the victim refused monetary compensation and demanded Asim receive the death penalty. The protesters argue that the prosecution failed to prove their case and that the defense proved Asim was at home during the protest resulting in the policeman’s death.
United States of America: On Tuesday, September 26, 2017, Georgia was scheduled to executed Keith Leroy Tharpe. His execution was stayed by the Supreme Court of the United States. A stay was granted while the court considers whether to hear his appeal. Keith and his lawyers are attempting to argue that one of the jurors in his trial was racist, due to several remarks he made at a later date. Keith is convicted of murdering his sister-in-law, 29-year-old Jacqueline Freeman on September 25, 1990. Read more about Keith’s case and his stay of execution here.
Zachary Adams was convicted of the kidnapping, rape, and murder of Holly Bobo, a nursing student in Savannah, Tennessee. Holly was kidnapped on April 13, 2011. Her remains were found by hunters in September of 2014. The man responsible, Zachary, was facing a possible death sentence, however, he reached a deal with prosecutors, for a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole, minutes before his sentencing hearing was scheduled to begin.
Scott Dekraai has been convicted of killing eight individuals in a mass killing in Orange County, California in 2011. Due to the prosecution engaging in misconduct regarding the jail informant program, Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals excluded the death penalty as an option. Instead, Scott has been sentenced to eight consecutive life prison terms, without the possibility of parole. He was also sentenced to an additional seven years to life for surviving victim of the shooting.
Death row inmates in South Carolina have moved prisons so that they are closer to the death chamber. Over 30 inmates participated in the move. Their new prison is in Columbia, across town from the death chamber. There are currently 35 inmates on death row in South Carolina.
Vietnam: Thirty-year-old Bui Van Bien has been sentenced to death for heroin trafficking and illegally possessing military weapons. Earlier this year, eight of of Bui’s accomplices were also sentenced to death and three others received sentences of life in prison.