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FLORIDA: SUPREME COURT HALTS DEATH PENALTY CASE

October 28, 2016: The Florida Supreme Court stopped a judge from proceeding with a death penalty case, signaling that courts might not be able to move forward with capital trials until the Legislature changes a law that justices earlier this month struck down as unconstitutional.
In the 5-2 decision, the court granted a request by lawyers for Patrick Albert Evans to stop Judge Joseph Bulone from moving forward with a trial slated to begin Monday.
Friday's ruling is the strongest indicator yet that Florida's death penalty remains in flux in the aftermath of a pair of opinions issued by state's high court on Oct. 14.
Those decisions found that a statute passed in March in response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in a case known as Hurst v. Florida was unconstitutional "because it requires that only 10 jurors recommend death as opposed to the constitutionally required unanimous, 12-member jury."
The majority in the decision in one of the cases, involving Death Row inmate Larry Darnell Perry, found that the law was unconstitutional because it did not require unanimous jury recommendations and "cannot be applied to pending prosecutions." Attorney General Pam Bondi last week asked the Supreme Court to "clarify" their rulings in the Perry and Hurst cases, maintaining that trials already underway should be allowed to move forward. In Evans' case, Bulone issued an order Wednesday saying he would begin to empanel a death-qualified jury on Monday and, if Evans is found guilty of 1st-degree murder, "proceed to a penalty phase consistent with" the Oct. 14 Supreme Court decisions.
"I don't think it would be all that hard to draft those jury instructions. I don't think it would be all that hard to come up with a verdict form," the judge told lawyers on Oct. 20, according to his order. Bulone's decision prompted Evans' lawyers to immediately ask the Supreme Court to intervene, warning of a "jurisprudential quagmire" if the court allowed the case to go forward "without appropriate guidance." "It is not a court's job to write the law," wrote Allison Ferber Miller and Jane McNeil, lawyers in the Sixth Judicial Circuit Public Defender's office, and Pete Mills, an assistant public defender in the Eighth Judicial Circuit, in the 137-page motion filed Wednesday.
Mills is chairman of the Florida Public Defender Association's death penalty steering committee. "There are 67 counties in the state of Florida, 20 judicial circuits and literally hundreds of judges. It simply cannot be this court's intent for each circuit judge to write his own law according to that judge's interpretation of the court's decisions in Perry and Hurst," Evans' lawyers wrote. In Friday's order, the Supreme Court majority wrote that Evans' petition "demonstrates a preliminary basis for relief," and gave prosecutors until Nov. 14 to show why the petition should not be granted.
Evans' lawyers have until Nov. 28 to respond.
The order put a stay on the circuit court proceedings. In her request for clarification, Bondi's lawyers argued that death penalty prosecutions can continue without a change in the law, so long as trial courts require unanimous jury recommendations. (Source: news-press.com, 30/10/2016)

SRI LANKA: FIVE SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER A MURDER CASE
SAUDI ARABIA: MURDERER RELEASED AFTER 15 YEARS ON DEATH ROW
PAKISTAN: SC STAYS HANGING OF MENTALLY ILL CONVICT IMDAD ALI
ALABAMA(USA): MARCUS BENN SPARED DEATH SENTENCE
PAKISTAN: SC COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCES OF TWO MURDERERS TO LIFE IMPRISONMENT
IRAN: JUSTICE MINISTER CALLS FOR REVISION OF DEATH PENALTY LAW
KAZAKHSTAN: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH IN ISLAMIC EXTREMIST ATTACK
MALAYSIA: INDIAN BEAUTICIAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR TRAFFICKING DRUGS
SUDAN: PRESIDENTIAL 'GOODWILL AMNESTY' FOR CONVICTED SPLM-N REBELS
USA: DEATH PENALTY ADVERSELY AFFECTS FAMILIES OF VICTIMS AND DEFENDANTS
BANGLADESH: FIVE GET DEATH SENTENCE OVER HABIGANJ FARMER MURDER
NIGERIA: 25-YEAR-OLD MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH BY HANGING
PAKISTAN: FATHER IS SENTENCED TO DEATH AFTER MURDERING HIS DAUGHTER BECAUSE SHE COULDN'T BAKE 'PERFECT BREAD'
IRAN: FIVE PRISONERS EXECUTED ON DRUG CHARGES
BANGLADESH: TWO AHSANULLAH UNIVERSITY STUDENTS GET DEATH SENTENCE FOR MURDERING CLASSMATE
KENYA: PRESIDENT KENYATTA SPARES 2,747 DEATH ROW CONVICTS FROM HANGMAN’S NOOSE
IRAN: THREE PEOPLE HANGED IN SHIRAZ
USA: U.S. EXECUTIONS NEAR A 25-YEAR LOW
IRAN: 4 EXECUTED FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING, MURDER
PAKISTAN: SUPREME COURT SAYS SCHIZOPHRENIA NOT A MENTAL DISORDER, DISMISSES MERCY PLEA OF DEATH ROW CONVICT
CHINA: LAW EXPERTS OPPOSE SENTENCE OF IMMEDIATE EXECUTION
MALAYSIA: FILIPINA SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
GHANA: FARMER SENTENCED TO DEATH
GAZA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER
EGYPT: CASSATION COURT OVERTURNS DEATH SENTENCES FOR 15 IN 2013 DEADLY ASSAULT ON KERDASA POLICE STATION
VIRGINIA (USA): SUPPORTED BY NEW DNA EVIDENCE, MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH IN 1970 FILES INNOCENCE CLAIM
GEORGIA (USA): GREGORY PAUL LAWLER EXECUTED
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED ON DRUG RELATED CHARGES
IRAN: 14 PRISONERS EXECUTED ON DRUG CHARGES AT GHEZEL HESAR PRISON
GAZA: THREE MEN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR SPYING, MURDER

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IRAN. HANDS OFF CAIN, REDUCTION OF DRUG EXECUTIONS BUT NUMBERS REMAIN WORRISOME
  HUMAN RIGHTS: DEMONSTRATION OF THE RADICAL PARTY BEFORE IRANIAN EMBASSY 14 FEBRUARY  
  BELARUS EXECUTES TWO CONVICTED MURDERERS  
  MALAYSIA: GOVT HALTS EXECUTION OF 1,200 DEATH ROW INMATES  
  JAPAN HANGS CULT LEADER SHOKO ASAHARA, 6 OTHERS FOR 1995 TOKYO SUBWAY SARIN ATTACK  
  SOMALIA - DEATH PENALTY AND TERRORISM  
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