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USA: SUPREME COURT SNUBS CHALLENGE TO DEATH PENALTY CONSTITUTIONALITY

February 27, 2017: The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a direct challenge to the constitutionality of the death penalty as cruel and unusual punishment, rejecting an appeal by Marcus Reed, a Louisiana death row inmate convicted of killing three brothers.
Liberal Justice Stephen Breyer objected to the court's decision not to hear the appeal by Reed, a drug dealer convicted in the Aug. 2010 shooting deaths of the three brothers, including a 13-year-old, over the theft of marijuana and an Xbox videogame console from his home.
The court's action came at a time of deep divisions among the eight justices over the death penalty, with Breyer and other liberals expressing doubt about whether capital punishment remains acceptable under the U.S. Constitution four decades after the court reinstated it.
Breyer, renewing his concerns over how the death penalty is administered in America, noted that Reed was sentenced to death in Louisiana's Caddo Parish, a county that he said has apparently sentenced more people to death per capita than any other county in the United States in recent history. Breyer wrote that "the arbitrary role that geography plays in the imposition of the death penalty," with certain places much more likely than others to use it, helped him "conclude that the court should consider the basic question of the death penalty's constitutionality."
Reed, who is now 39, Black, asked the U.S. Supreme Court to determine whether the death penalty represented cruel and unusual punishment, forbidden by the U.S. Constitution's Eighth Amendment. "The standards of decency have evolved since this court last considered the broad question of the constitutionality of capital punishment," Reed's petition said.
Reed's lawyers argued that capital punishment undermines human dignity and public confidence in the fair administration of justice, adding that its use by states has dropped to such low levels that it can hardly be considered an indispensable part of the criminal justice system. The Supreme Court upheld the death penalty as constitutional in a landmark 1976 ruling, but has in more recent years imposed some limits in its application for juveniles and people with intellectual disabilities.
The justices' starkly contrasting views on capital punishment have been on display in recent cases. Last week, after the court turned away a death row inmate's challenge to Alabama's lethal injection procedures, liberal Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote a dissent saying lethal injection might be the "most cruel" method yet.
Reed was convicted in 2013 of murdering 18-year-old Jarquis Adams and his brothers Jeremiah, 20, and Gene, 13. The jury rejected his self-defense argument. (Source: Reuters, whtc.com, 27/02/2017)

PAKISTANI COURT FREES MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR BLASPHEMY
COLOMBIA PROTESTS CHINA'S EXECUTION OF 72-YEAR-OLD DRUG MULE
IRAN: TWO PRISONERS HANGED IN URMIA
MALAYSIA: DEATH ROW INMATE SPARED THE NOOSE THANKS TO ROYAL PARDON
NIGERIA: LAWYER FADIPE’S KILLER SENTENCED TO DEATH
ARKANSAS SCHEDULES UNPRECEDENTED EIGHT EXECUTIONS IN TEN-DAY PERIOD
MALAYSIA: INDONESIAN TO HANG FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
ALGERIA: KILLER OF NATIONAL POLICE CHIEF SENTENCED TO DEATH
EGYPT PARLIAMENT REJECTS ABOLITION OF DEATH PENALTY
AFGHANISTAN: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH BY APPEAL COURT IN KABUL
IRAN: PRISONER HANGED IN BANDAR ABBAS
BOTSWANA: GOVERNMENT WILL NOT AMEND DEATH PENALTY LAW – MINISTER
NIGERIA: MAN SENTENCED TO DEATH BY HANGING FOR KILLING WIFE
VIETNAM: HANOI COURT SENTENCES TWO VINASHIN EXECS TO DEATH
UAE: TEENAGER GETS DEATH PENALTY FOR STABBING MAN TO DEATH IN ROW OVER FOOTBALL
US SUPREME COURT GRANTS TEXAS DEATH ROW INMATE DUANE BUCK NEW HEARING
UN: SAIF AL-ISLAM GADDAFI MUST BE HURLED BEFORE ICC
EGYPT: CASSATION COURT UPHOLDS DEATH SENTENCES FOR 10 OVER FOOTBALL RIOT
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED AT SHIRAZ PRISON
NIGERIA: TWO SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR ARMED ROBBERY
MALAYSIA: LORRY ATTENDANT SENT TO GALLOWS FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
GAZA: HAMAS CONDEMNS 6 ‘INFORMANTS FOR ISRAEL’ TO DEATH BY HANGING
BANGLADESH: COURT SENTENCES ONE TO DEATH OVER MANIKGANJ FARMER’S MURDER
IRAN: TWO PRISONERS EXECUTED AT DIZSEL ABAD PRISON
SINGAPORE: 2 PAKISTANI MEN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER
SUDAN: CHILD RAPIST SENTENCED TO DEATH
SRI LANKA: 5 SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER 1995 MURDER
IRAN: 15 PRISONERS EXECUTED
INDIA: MAN GETS DEATH SENTENCE FOR MURDER OF DALIT
ARIZONA INVITES DEATH ROW INMATES TO BRING THEIR OWN EXECUTION DRUGS

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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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