Friday, October 26, 2018

Singapore kills again, and again, and again.....

In an unannounced hanging, Selemat Bin Paki was hanged yesterday in Singapore.

Two other condemned prisoners await execution, scheduled for today.

On October 25th Singapore's Supreme Court sentenced to death a 30 year old security guard, Gabi Avedian charged with importing 40.22 g of heroin, overruling an Appeal Court sentence of 15 years imprisonment and 10 strokes of the cane on a less severe charge of attempted trafficking.
The sentencing judges had "grave reservations" about testimony of assurances given to Gabi when he undertook delivery,  that the drugs were not heroin
The sentence raises a semantic issue. It would appear that "grave reservations" outweigh the standard for capital punishment sentencing, requiring evidence of guilt to be "beyond reasonable doubt". Would the scales of justice hang even for the one against the other? Are life and death in Singapore dependent on so fine an issue

Singapore has already execute six persons this year, perhaps eight by today

Friday, October 05, 2018

Singapore kills again

deathpenaltythailand has long been a friend and admirer of  Singapore lawyer Ravi. I am familiar with his method of engagement for those whose lives he tries to save. First, he engages with the family of the accused, learning all he can about the life of his client. He asks for some small object which was a treasured possession of the accused and keeps it before him to remind him continually of the real person involved. Then he devotes his excellent legal skills to explore every avenue of defense. I have heard all too often of court appointed lawyers who meet for the first time with the accused on the day of trial, and choose the easy option of recommending an admission of guilt, which may result in a life sentence rather than the death penalty. The tactics of defense of Ravi are often ingenious, exploiting every possible flaw in the arguments of the prosecution. His dearest clients are those most disadvantaged in society. His greatest suffering is to meet with failure and see another life sacrificed on the alter of "Justice".    

"I just received heartbreaking news from 2 lawyers representing drug traffickers that their clients are going to be hanged at 6am tomorrow. In total there will be three state sanctioned executions- Zainuddin, Abdul Wahid and another - all for drug trafficking. A dark day for me as I felt helpless when one of the lawyers asked me to help his client whom he says is 100% innocent.I know he has done his best and is as desperate as I am thinking about what can be done. This will be one of the highest number of hangings in a single day in recent times. I will be writing to the authorities to halt the executions and to impose a moratorium on the death penalty, though I know this will fall on deaf ears as has done before ..... I will be heading to Changi prison later to say a prayer and to express my solidarity with the families of the 3 victims of yet more state murders."