July 26, 2019

IDPN 2019 Issue 29

China: The Supreme People’s Court has announced that those convicted of committing sexual assault against children that are "extremely vile in nature" and cause "extremely severe consequences” will not receive any leniency consideration. This announcement comes as studies show an increase in sexual assault against children in the nation, which affect the physical and mental health of children.


On Wednesday, July 24, 2019, He Long was executed after approval from the Intermediate People’s Court of Line in Shandong Province. Long was convicted of raping young girls under the age of 14 and then forcing them into prostitution.



Iran: The government has announced that it has arrested 17 Iranian nationals who are accused of working for the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States. The men are accused of spying on the Iran’s nuclear and military sites and reporting to the United States. Some of the men have already been convicted and sentenced to death, although Iran has also announced that none of the men were successful in carrying out any sabotage. President of the United States Donald Trump has tweeted that the allegations have “zero truth.”


On Sunday, June 14, 2019, three men - Ali Karimi, Mohammad Parvaei and Amirali Shadabi - were executed by hanging at Minab prison. All were convicted of murder.


On Sunday, July 21, 2019, 30-year-old Majid Mosleh was executed by hanging at a prison in the city of Kashan. Majid is convicted of murdering the husband of the woman with whom he was having an affair. The woman, who was complicit in the murder, was sentenced to 25 years in prison.


On Tuesday, July 23, 2019, two women were executed by hanging at the Central Prison of Urmia. The two women were identified as Arasteh Ranjbar and Nazdar Vatankhah. They were convicted of murder and complicity in murder, respectively.



Iraq: Two unnamed men have been sentenced to death for being members of the Islamic State terrorist group. One of the men was found to have been involved in terrorist attacks again security forces near the Baiji oil refiner and the University of Tikrit. The other ran a workshop for “booby-trapping” vehicles used by the Islamic State.



Thailand: Twenty-four-year-old Ronnakorn Romruen has been sentenced to death for the rape and murder of 26-year-old Miriam Beelte on April 7, 2019. After which, he attempted to conceal the evidence of his crime by hiding the body. Locals found the body later that day. Romruen, who was high on drugs at the time of the crime, has pleaded guilty to all charges, hoping to receive a lesser sentence. The court has stated that due to the severity of the crime, a death sentence is warranted and cannot be mitigated..



United States of America: Ignacio “Nacho” Gomez, a death row inmate in Texas, has died in prison on Sunday, July 21, 2019. His cause of death has been announced as cardiac arrest, according to a prison spokesperson. Ignacio, a 49-year-old Mexican national, has been on death row for the last 21years. He was convicted of murdering 18-year-old Toby Hatheway, Jr., and 16-year-old twin brothers, Michael and Matthew Meredith in El Paso, Texas on November 23, 1996. Ignacio believed the teenagers had vandalized his mother’s home. After shooting them repeatedly in the head, Ignacio attempted to conceal their bodies.


The Former Vice President, and current Democratic Presidential candidate, Joe Biden has announced his support for abolishing capital punishment at a federal level, and supports incentivizing states to do the same. In previous years, Biden has shown support for the death penalty, including while he served in the Senate. Now, he joins with all other top democratic presidential candidates in condemning the practice. Under Biden’s newly released plan, all those currently sentenced to death would have their sentences commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole. His plan also includes measures for sweeping changes within the criminal justice system.


Daniel Lewis Lee, Lezmond Mitchell, Wesley Ira Purkey, Alfred Bourgeois, and Dustin Lee Honken, are all federal, death row inmates who have completed their appeals process. Now, the US Justice Department has announced that federal executions will resume and that all five of the above men have been given execution dates. The last federal execution occurred in 2003. Since then, executions have been on hold due to ongoing litigation over the practice. According to protocol, the execution will be carried out by lethal injection of a single drug - pentobarbital. It is unknown at this time how the drug will be obtained for the executions. Federal executions are carried out at a federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.


Daniel Lewis Lee is the first federal inmates scheduled to be executed on Monday, December 9, 2019. Lee, a white supremacist, was convicted in Arkansas in May of 1999 for the triple murder of William Mueller, his wife Nancy, and her 8-year-old daughter Sarah Powell. Lee was sentenced to death on May 13, 2002.


Lezmond Mitchell, a native American, is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, December 11, 2019. On a Navajo reservation in Arizona, Mitchell received a ride for 63-year-old Alyce Slim and her 9-year-old granddaughter Tiffany Lee on Cotboer 28, 2001. Both were then stabbed to death, at separate locations and the vehicle was stolen to be used in armed robberies. Lezmond was sentenced to death on September 15, 2003.


Wesley Ira Purkey is scheduled to be executed on Friday, December 13, 2019. He is convicted of the kidnapping, rape, and murder of 16-year-old Jennifer Long in 1998, in Kansas City, Missouri. After the murder, he burned and dismembered her body. Purkey confessed to the crime while serving a life sentence for the murder of an 80-year-old woman in Kansas City, Kansas.


Alfred Bourgeois has been given an execution date of Monday, January 13, 2020. Alfred has been convicted, and was sentenced to death on March 24, 2004, for the 2002 murder of his two-year-old daughter at the Corpus Christi Naval Air Station in Texas.


Dustin Lee Honken has been an execution date of Wednesday, January 15, 2020. Dustin is convicted of murdering five individuals, Lori Duncan and her two daughters, 10-year-old Kandi and 6-year-old Amber, along with Greg Nicholson and Terry DeGeus in Iowa. The three adults were scheduled to testify against Honkon in a federal drug case, while the two children were killed for witnessing their mother’s murder. Honkon was sentenced to death for the two girls, while receiving three life sentences for the other murders.



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