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IDPN 2021

International Death Penalty News 2021, Issue 18: Egypt, India, Iran, Malawi, Pakistan, Qatar, Singapore, United States of America

April 30, 2021
IDPN 2021 Issue 18

Egypt: Seventeen people have been executed at Wadi Al-Natrun Prison, including an 80-year-old Koran teacher Sheikh Abdel Halim Gabreel. The other executed inmates were identified as Walid Saad Abu Omaira, Mohamed Rizk Abuel Soud, Ashraf Sayed Rizk, Ahmed Owes Hussein, Essam Abdel Moety, Ahmed Abdel Nabi, Badr Abdel Nabi, Qutb Sayed Qutb, Omar Mohamed El-Sayed, Izzat Al-Attar, Ali El-Sayed Kenawy, Abdullah Saeed, Mohamed Yousef Al-Seidi, Ahmed Abdel Salam, Arafat Abdel Latif, Mustafa El-Sayed El-Kerfesh. All were convicted of charges relating to an attack on a Kerdasa police station in August 2013, that resulted in 13 police officers being killed. The execution were, unusually, carried out during the holy month of Ramadan, which has drawn criticism. Death penalty opponents have also criticized the trial for those killed as “grossly unfair,” as the defendants were allegedly denied access to lawyers and forced to confess.

India: On January 20, 2019, a 12-year-old girl from Kangula village was raped and killed while she was carrying lunch to her father. A man named Anam was convicted and sentenced to death for her murder. Now, the Special Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses has reduced Anam’s sentence to life in prison, as well as a fine to be paid to the victim’s family.

The death sentence of a 34-year-old has been reduced to life in prison by a court. The man was convicted of raping and murdering a seven-year-old girl on March 25, 2019. The court reduced the sentence after it was determined that case did not meet the criteria of “worst of the worst” in order to be eligible for the death penalty. The sentence has been reduced to life in prison.

Iran: Two men have been sentenced to death after being convicted of “insulting the prophet.” One of the men has been identified as Yousef Mehrad, a father of three who was arrested during the early morning hours of May 24, 2020, after which he was taken to Arak Central prison for interrogations. For two months, Yousef was kept in solitary confinement and for eight months, he was denied contact with his family or access to a lawyer. No information has been provided about the second man.

Malawi:  The highest court in the nation, has ruled that the death penalty is unconstitutional and ordered that all current death row inmates be resentenced. For years, the death penalty has been the mandatory punishment for anyone convicted murder or treason. A person could also be sentenced to death for rape, violent robberies, house break-ins, and burglaries. No executions have been carried out in the nation since 1994, when the first democratically elected president took office.

Pakistan: Ghulam Abbas has been sentenced to death for killing four people – Hira, Sabahat, Faiza and Ali Haider Zohaib – over a marriage dispute in the limits of Police Station Airport in September 2020. Abbas has also received two life terms, a 25-year sentence and a fine to compensate the families of the victims.

On Tuesday, April 27, 2021, a father and son were each sentenced to death for their part in a double murder. Muhammad Qurban and his son Muhammad Shabbir were convicted of killing Qurban’s wife, Shamim Bibi and daughter Mukhtaran Bibi. They were murdered because Shamim refused to transfer her property to his name. Three others were also accused in the case, however, they were acquitted due to lack of evidence.

Qatar: After a 20-year hiatus, Qatar has resumed carrying out executions, with the execution of Anil Choudary, a Nepali man, who was convicted of murder. The execution was carried out after the victim’s family refused to pardon Anil. Anil was convicted of killing a Qatari with a knife.

Singapore: An Indonesian worker, 28-year-old Daryati, has been sentenced to life in prison for the murder of 59-year-old Seow Kim Choo, her employer. Seow was stabbed to death on June 7, 2016, receiving more than 90 stab wounds. Daryati initially faced charges that could have resulted in her being sentenced to death, however the charges were later reduced by the prosecution. Daryati claimed that she suffered from persistent depressive disorder with intermittent major depressive disorder and that she should not be held fully responsible for her actions. The court disagreed with her, saying she did not provide sufficient evidence of proof of her diagnosis.

United States of America: On Monday, April 19, 2021, Nevada death row inmate Patrick Charles McKenna died at an outside hospital after experiencing a series of heart attacks. Patrick was 74 years of age and one of Nevada’s longest serving death row inmate. Patrick was sentenced to death in 1979, after being convicted of murdering his cellmate, 20-year-old JJ Nobles, on January 5, 1979, at Clark County jail, where Patrick had just been convicted and sentenced for robbery, kidnapping, and sexual assault.

Lawmakers in Tennesseehave passed a bill that prevents death row inmates with intellectually disabilities from being executed. The bill is now being sent to Governor’s Bill Lee’s desk, for his signature. In 2002, the Supreme Court of the United States also ruled that person with intellectual disabilities cannot be executed, as it violates their 8th Amendment right. However, the Tennessee Supreme Court later ruled that there is no procedure in the state for death row inmates to have their cases reopened to explore intellectual disability claims. The recent bill will address that issue.

On Wednesday, April 28, 2021, California death row inmate Charles Edward Crawford was found unresponsive in his cell. He was later pronounced dead at a hospital. His cause of death has not yet been reported. Charles was 46 years of age. He was sentenced to death in June 2002, after being convicted of murdering of 16-year-old Evangeline Reyel and 20-year-old Mark Williams on April 15, 1996, in Fremont, California.

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