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'Express lane to death': Texas seeks approval to speed up death penalty appeals, execute more quickly

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Texas is seeking to speed up executions with a renewed request to opt-in to a federal law that would shorten the legal process and limit appeals options for death-sentenced prisoners.
Defense attorneys worry it would lead to the execution of innocent people and - if it's applied retroactively, as Texas is requesting - it could potentially end ongoing appeals for a number of death row prisoners and make them eligible for execution dates.
"Opt-in would speed up the death penalty treadmill exponentially," said Kathryn Kase, an longtime defense attorney and former executive director of Texas Defender Services.
But a state attorney general spokeswoman framed the request to the Justice Department as a necessary way to avoid "stressful delays" and cut down on the "excessive costs" of lengthy federal court proceedings.
Robbie Kaplan, co-founder of the #TimesUp movement, says sweeping changes to laws in recent years have dissuaded attorneys from taking on har…

Iran: Seven Prisoners Including Pakistani Citizens Hanged in Sistan & Baluchestan

Iran: A corrupt theocracy meting out barbaric and medieval punishments
Iran: A corrupt theocracy meting out barbaric and medieval punishments
Seven prisoners were reportedly executed in prisons located in the Sistan & Baluchestan province. Most of the prisoners were executed on drug related charges.

Iran Human Rights (JULY 16 2017): In the past few days, seven prisoners, including two Pakistani citizens, were reportedly hanged at Zahedan Central and Iranshahr prisons.

On the morning of Thursday July 13, a prisoner by the name of Sharif Reigi was reportedly executed on murder charges at Zahedan Central Prison (Sistan & Baluchestan province, eastern Iran). 

According to the Baluch Activists Campaign, Mr. Reigi was transferred to solitary confinement on Sunday July 9 in preparation for execution.

On Saturday July 15, three prisoners were reportedly hanged at Zahedan Central Prison on drug related charges. 

The prisoners have been identified as Sheikh Mohammad Baluchzehi, 50 years of age, Kabir Dehghanzehi, 21 years of age, and Dadmohammad Dehghanzehi. 

These prisoners were reportedly transferred to solitary confinement on Thursday July 13 in preparation for execution. 

Dadmohammad and Kabir were reportedly Pakistani citizens who were arrested eight years ago. According to a report by the Baluch Activists Campaign, Kabir was 13 years old at the time of his arrest. This report says that Kabir had travelled to Iran for driving lessons. Iran Human Rights has not been able to confirm Kabir's exact age at the time of his arrest.

On the morning of Sunday July 16, two prisoners were reportedly hanged on murder charges at Zahedan Central Prison. The prisoners have been identified as Yousef Bozorgzadeh, 46 years of age, and Ebrahim Damani. Yousef was reportedly arrested eleven years ago.

Also on Sunday, a prisoner was reportedly executed on drug related charges at Iranshahr Prison (Sistan & Baluchestan province, southern Iran). The prisoner has been identified as Abdoljalil Shahli, arrested seven years ago.

Iranian official sources, including the Judiciary and the state-run media, have not announced any of these executions.

Source: Iran Human Rights, July 16, 2017

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