February 13, 2015

IDPN 2015  Issue 07


China:Liu Han, who was mining billionaire and alleged associated of a disgraced former security tsar, executed on Monday, February 9, 2015.  Han and his brother Liu Wei, along with three accomplices were sentenced to death for “organizing and leading a mafia-style group.”  All five were executed on Monday.


Also on Monday, a Chinese court sentenced to death 43-year-old Zhao Zhihong, who was known as the “smiling killer.”  Zhao confessed to killing 10 people and raping 13 others, including a 1996 murder, for which another individuals, 18-year-old Huugjilt, had been executed.  Huugjilt’s parents were present to hear their deceased sons’ conviction overturned and to be awarded compensation. 



Kuwait: The nation’s Court of Appeals has upheld the death sentence for a traffic police officer convicted of kidnapping, raping, and attempting to murder a Filipino.  The officer stopped a taxi and upon determining that the women was in the country illegal, ordered her to get out and the taxi driver to drive away.  He stabbed her several times when she refused to have sex with him, and, believing her dead, left her.  She was later able to identify her attacker.



Lebanon:Twenty-three individuals have been sentenced to death for their involvement in the 2007 Fatah al-Islam attacks on the Army.  Fatah al-Islam is classified as a terrorist organization by the government.  All were charged and convicted of belonging to the organization.  In 2007, the group waged war against the Lebanese Army in a refugee camp, which resulted in the death of 170 soldiers and 64 civilians.



Saudi Arabia:Abdullah Mohammed al-Ahmad al-Anzi was executed by beheading on Tuesday, February 10, 2015.  Abdullah, originally from Syria, was convicted of trafficking amphetamine pills.


On Wednesday, February 11, 2015, Nayef al-Briki, a Yemen national, was executed by beheading for trafficking hashish.  He was executed in a town near the Yemen border.



United States of America:Walter Storey was executed by the state of Missouri on Wednesday, February 11, 2015.  He was pronounced dead shortly at 12:10 am CST.  Walter was 47 years of age.  He was executed for the murder of 36-year-old special education teacher Jill Frey in her St. Charles, Missouri, apartment.  Read the full story here.


The state of Missouri has announced a change in the time of executions.  Missouri has held executions at 12 am CT for decades, however, beginning in March, executions will now be held at 6 pm.  Missouri has resisted changing the execution time in order to ensure that the state had a full 24 hours to carry out the execution.  The court’s execution orders will state that the execution can be carried out anytime within a 24-hour period.


A state representative has submitted a bill that would prevent anyone from being sentenced to death after July 1, 2015, effectively ending the capital punishment in Kansas.  It also introduces a firm life without the possibility of parole.  The bill is not retroactive, however, so the inmates already on death row could still be executed.  Kansas has not carried out an execution since 1961. 


A Senate Judiciary Committee in Oklahoma unanimously voted to approved the use of nitrogen gas for executions should lethal injection be ruled unconstitutional.  Executions in Oklahoma are currently on hold as the Supreme Court of the United States reviews its execution protocol.  Problems with the protocol began last April when an inmate appeared to suffered during his execution, eventually dying from a heart attack.  It was later determined the needle had been improperly inserted.  Oklahoma has since successfully carried out one execution.  Nitrogen gas is thought to be one of the human ways to carry out executions.


A bill that called for a repeal of the death penalty in South Dakota, has been defeated by a legislative committee.  The narrow vote came over protests by two former attorney generals who both believe that the death penalty should be repealed in the state.