June 29, 2018
IDPN 2018 Issue 26
China: Ten individuals have been sentenced to death in Guangdong Province in southern China. All ten individuals were convicted of dealing drugs. Immediately after their sentencing trial, they individuals were taken to be executed.
On Thursday, June 28, 2018, 39-year-old Car Liqun and 36-year-old Huang Zhengye were publicly sentenced to death for selling drugs. They were then immediately executed by firing squad. Many of the 300 attending the public sentencing were wearing school uniforms.
India: Twenty-eight-year-old Pragya Survase has been arrested for poisoning food that led to the deaths of five individuals and the hospitalization of over 100 others. Pragya is accused of mixing insecticide in the food at a housewarming party. She has confessed to the crime. If convicted of murder, she could be sentenced to death.
The cabinet in Punjab has agreed to changes to the Indian Penal Code. The new changes would allow for the those convicted of raping a girl under the age of 12 to be sentenced to death. Additionally, the minimum punishment for rape had been increased from seven years to ten years. The minimum punishment for raping a girl under the age of 16 has been changed from 20 years to life in prison.
Iran: On Wednesday, June 27, 2018, four individuals were executed by hanging. Abolfazl Chazani Sharahi was executed at Qom Central Prison for a murder he allegedly committed when he was 15. Executing a person for a crime committed while a minor is a violation of international law. He is thought to be the fourth individual executed this year for a crime committed while a minor. Safa Ali Jalali and Majid Heydari were also executed a Rajai Star Prison. Both were convicted of murder. Thirty-three-year-old Mehdi Alami was executed by hanging a Sary Central Prison. He was convicted of murder.
Iraq: Haider al-Abadi, the prime minister, has ordered that all death row terror convicts have their executions carried out after terrorist group, Islamic State, killed eight hostages and dismembered their bodies. The order is for the immediate execution of all terrorist who have completed their appeals. Since the fall of the Islamic State, the Iraqi justice system has been overburdened by captives of the terrorist group, with a minimum estimate of 19,000 individuals arrested and accused of terrorism. Over 3,000 have been sentenced to death so far. Since this new order was given, at least 12 inmates have been executed.
Jordan: The Court of Cassation has upheld a ruling sentencing two brothers, aged 22 and 28, to death for the murder of their 27-year-old, three-month pregnant sister and a 50-year-old woman on November 8, 2017. The brothers claim that the murder was an honor killing. They also claimed the murder occurred in “a moment of rage,” and they should therefore receive a reduced sentence.
North Korea: It is being reported that Hyon Ju Song, the lieutenant general of the Korean People’s Army in Pyongyang, has been executed by firing squad for “abusing authority and engaging in anti-Party acts.” Allegedly, Hyon ordered extra food and fuel for the military officers and their families at the Sohae Satellite Launching Station and said that, “We no longer have to suffer and tighten our belts to make rockets or nuclear weapons.” This statement was seen as abuse of power, opposing the Party, failing the maintain secrecy of the affairs of the Party, and misrepresenting the ideology of the party.
Saudi Arabia: Abdullah bin Mubarak bin Manahi Al Barooq Al Bishi, a Saudi national, was executed by beheading, according to the Ministry of Interior. Abdullah was convicted of murdering his father by pouring gasoline on him while he slept and lighting him on fire.
Singapore: Fifty-eight-year-old Chia Kee Chen has had his life sentence changed to the death penalty following an appeal by the prosecution. Chen is convicted of murdering the former lover of his wife in December of 2013. The victim, Dexmon Chua, was tortured before being beaten to death. Chen’s accomplice, 36-year-old Febri Irwansyah Djatmiko is currently at large in Indonesia, while 68-year-old driver Chua Leong Aik has serving a jail term.
Sudan: Nineteen-year-old Noura Hussein has had her death sentence overturned and she was resentenced to five years in prison. Noura was forced to marry Abdulrahman Mohamed Hammad when she was 16 years of age. Noura was sentenced to death for murdering her husband after he raped her while her family members held her down. Noura killed Abdulrahman when he attempted to rape her again the following day. Noura was turned into the police by her parents.
United States of America: On Wednesday, June 27, 2018, Daniel “Danny” Bible was executed in the state of Texas. Danny, dubbed the “Ice Pick Killer,” was executed for the murder of 20-year-old Inez Deaton, whom he stabbed 11 times with an ice pick after entering her home to use her phone. The crime went unsolved for nearly 20 years, until Danny eventually confessed while in prison for another crime. Danny also confessed to a string of rapes and murders over the years. Read more about Danny and his case here.
Seven years after the report was commissioned, the Joint State Government Commission report on the death penalty in Pennsylvania has finally been completed and publicly released. The reported noted that there were a high number of people with intellectual disabilities and mental illnesses on death row and that capital punishment in the state had been unevenly applied. Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has placed a moratorium on executions in the state until the report was completed and its recommendations implemented. Numerous recommendations were included in the report, including the following: automatically disqualifying a person with mental illness from receiving the death penalty, requiring a judge to determine mental competency prior to the trial, and creating a state-funded capital defender office to represent people charged with capital crimes at trial and on appeal. The use of capital punishment is being considered a campaign issue for the gubernatorial election this November. The current governor’s opposition to the death penalty is well-know, while his opponent Scott Wagner has promised swift justice and to being signing death warrants within 48 hours of taking office.
The West Chester Court of Common Pleas in Pennsylvania has re-sentenced 47-year-old Darrick Hall to life in prison. Darrick was sentenced to death for the October 1994 murder of laundromat manager Donald Johnson. Darrick was robbing the laundromat when he shot and killed Donald in Coatesville. Darrick was scheduled to have a re-sentencing hearing, however the prosecution and defense reached an agreement that resulted in Darrick being sentenced to life in prison, without the possibility of parole.
District Judge Michael Vallani in Las Vegas, Nevada, has vacated the death sentenced for 71-year-old Frederick Mendoza. Mendoza, a former Marine who served in the Vietnam War and has lived with post-traumatic stress disorder ever since, was sentenced to death in 2008 for the rape and murder of a 68 year old woman. As part of his death with prosectors to receive the reduced sentence, Mendoza has agreed to stop all appeals in his case.