Monday, April 11, 2005

Executed without sentence

Saudi Arabia has reportedly executed six men without sentencing them to death. The men were jailed for five years in 1999 for abducting and robbing taxi drivers. When their sentence was up, they continued to be detained. When Amnesty International protested, they were executed. None were informed that they faced execution until they were about to be beheaded.

I oppose the death penalty - but this is not about the death penalty; it is about the minimum standards demanded of any justice system. Even countries which murder must abide by the basics of procedural fairness - including informing people of the charges against them, giving them a fair chance to present a defence and challenge the evidence, and telling them their sentence if they are convicted. Otherwise you don't have a justice system so much as a formalised system of lynching.


Were they executed because Amnesty complained? I've noticed that officials can be extremely vindictive if their actions are challenged.

Posted by Anonymous : 4/11/2005 10:14:00 AM

I think the timing is more coincidental; the problem is that they were executed without ever being informed of their sentence or given a chance to challenge it.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 4/11/2005 04:35:00 PM