February 5, 2021
IDPN 2021 Issue 06
Bangladesh: The High Court has confirmed the death sentences of eight individuals who have been convicted in two separate murder cases. Four individuals, 28-year-old Suman Dhali alias Daku Suman, 28-year-old Zakaria Hussain alias Jony, 32-year-old Suman alias CNG Suman and 28-year-old Nasir Uddin, were convicted of killing a couple, 35-year-old Saju and his 27-year-old wife Ronji, and their two children, seven-year-old Imran, and two-year-old Sanjida, in Keraniganj on September 24, 2014. The four other men were not named, but were convicted of raping and murdering a teenage girl in Faridpur in December 2018.
China: On Tuesday, February 2, 2021, 53-year-old Wang Shujin was executed in Hebei province. Wang was convicted of four rapes, three murders, and an attempted murder, all of which occurred between 1993 and 1995. Wang had previously served time in prison for rape. Wang was arrested in 2005, at which time he voluntarily confessed to six rapes and murders.
Also on Tuesday, February 2, 2021, Yang Guangyi was executed in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. Yang was convicted of using cruel and violent means to rape a girl in 2018, which resulted in her death. Yang surrendered to the police after the murder, in the hope of being granted leniency.
Iran: On Saturday, January 30, 2021, 31-year-old Javid Dehghan-Khold was executed at Zahedan Central Prison. Javid, a Baluch prisoner, was convicted on political and security charges. Javid was allegedly tortured into confessing to his crimes and he also was allegedly denied due process through lack of access to his lawyer.
On Tuesday, February 2, 2021, 37-year-old Jabbar Nemati was executed by hanging at Adelabad Prison in Shiraz. Jabbar, a former welder, was convicted of murdering a man during a financial dispute.
Malaysia: Thirty-four-year-old Lyiana Roslee, the wife of a political figure, could be sentenced to death after being arrested for trafficking and producing marijuana. Several cannabis plants were discovered in her home. Also arrested in the police raid was a Filipino domestic helper.
Pakistan: An unnamed man has been sentenced to death by a sessions court in Karachi, for the rape and murder of a six-year-old child. The murder occurred in 2015, and the man confessed to the crime. He has also been ordered to pay a fine to the family of the child.
A bill has been passed by the Senate Standing Committee on Interior that would allow for the death penalty for anyone convicted of raping a child. Additionally, the bill wants the high courts trial for sexual offenses against children to be completed within 30 days, followed by two months for appeals to the Supreme Court.
Palestine: On Monday, January 27, 2021, the Court of the First Instance of Deir al-Balah sentenced to death a 25-year-old, identified by initials only. The man was from the Jabalia refugee camp and was convicted of murdering another person over a financial dispute in July 2017.
United States of America: Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Wendell Griffen has announced that he plans to retire when his term expires on December 21, 2022. Judge Griffen has held his seat since 2010. In April 2017, he was barred by the Arkansas Supreme Court from hearing death penalty cases. The ruling came after Judge Griffen blocked Arkansas from using lethal injection drugs, while later in the same day, participated in an anti-death penalty protest outside the Arkansas governor’s mansion. During the protest, Judge Griffen was photographed lying on a cot, simulating an inmate about to receive a lethal injection.
The state Senate in Virginia has passed bill, by a vote of 21-17, that would abolish the death penalty in the state. On Friday, February 5, 2021, the Virginia House of Delegates also voted to pass the bill, by a vote of 57-41. The bill will now head to Governor Ralph Northam, who has already stated that he supports the bill. Since 1982, Virginia has carried nearly 1400 executions since its founding, and currently trails only Texas in the number of executions performed since 1976. Currently, there are only two death row inmates in Virginia. If Governor Northam signs the bill into law, Virginia will become the first southern state to abolish capital punishment.
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