Nagaenthran Dharmalingam: Campaigners urge Singapore not to execute man with intellectual disabilities

Nagaenthran Ok Dharmalingam, a 33-year-old Malaysian man, was arrested in 2009 for bringing 42.7 grams (1.5 ounces) of heroin into Singapore. He is because of be executed by hanging on Wednesday.

Dharmalingam’s attorneys and rights teams preventing to avoid wasting him say Singapore is violating worldwide regulation by executing an individual with a psychological impairment. Legal professionals are in search of a prohibitory order in opposition to the execution at a listening to on Monday, having exhausted all different authorized appeals. A petition to the President for clemency was additionally unsuccessful.

Singapore’s Ministry of House Affairs mentioned in a statement Dharmalingam “was accorded full due course of below the regulation, and was represented by authorized counsel all through the method.”

Nonetheless, his attorneys argue that Dharmalingam mustn’t have been sentenced to loss of life below Singaporean regulation as a result of he was incapable of understanding his actions. A psychologist assessed his IQ to be 69, which is internationally acknowledged as an mental incapacity. At his trial, the protection additionally argued he had extreme consideration deficit hyperactivity dysfunction (ADHD), borderline mental functioning, and extreme alcohol use dysfunction.

Dharmalingam has spent a decade on loss of life row and through that point his situation has additional deteriorated, his attorneys mentioned.

“He has not an excellent sense of what’s occurring round him,” mentioned N. Surendran, a Malaysian lawyer who’s representing Dharmalingam’s household, and adviser to Malaysian NGO Legal professionals for Liberty. “He’s disoriented. He is bought no actual clue of what’s going to occur to him.”

Surendran mentioned executing Dharmalingam “could be tantamount to executing a baby.”

Singapore has a number of the strictest drug legal guidelines on this planet. Trafficking a specific amount of medication — for instance, 15 grams (0.5 ounces) of heroin — leads to a compulsory loss of life sentence below the Misuse of Medicine Act. It was solely just lately — and after Dharmalingam’s case started — the regulation was amended to permit for a convicted individual to flee the loss of life penalty in sure circumstances.

An activist holds a placard before submitting a memorandum to parliament in protest at the impending execution of Nagaenthran K. Dharmalingam, in Kuala Lumpur on November 3.

Dharmalingam was convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced to loss of life by Singapore’s Excessive Court docket in 2010. His first enchantment was dismissed a yr later. One other enchantment after Singapore amended its drug regulation was once more rejected in 2018.

“The Court docket of Attraction affirmed the Excessive Court docket’s choice and mentioned that it was glad that Nagaenthran clearly understood the character of his acts,” the Ministry of House Affairs said in a statement.

The courtroom argued Dharmalingam transported medicine “in an effort to repay his money owed” and he knew it was illegal so he “tried to hide the bundle by strapping it to his left thigh.” It additionally mentioned Dharmalingam was “constantly altering his account of his schooling {qualifications}, ostensibly to replicate decrease academic {qualifications} every time he was interviewed.”

“This was ‘the working of a felony thoughts, weighing the dangers and countervailing advantages related to the felony conduct in query.’ Nagaenthran thought of the dangers, balanced it in opposition to the reward he had hoped he would get, and determined to take the chance,” the ministry mentioned in its assertion, quoting the courtroom’s choice.

Public strain

Dharmalingam’s case has sparked worldwide condemnation. Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob has written to his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsein Loong asking for leniency, Malaysian state media Bernama reported.

Greater than 62,000 folks have signed a petition urging Singapore’s President Halimah Yacob to problem a pardon. Final week, dozens of activists protested outdoors Parliament within the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.

Human Rights Watch, Amnesty Worldwide, Anti-Dying Penalty Asia Community (ADPAN) and different rights teams have additionally known as on the Singapore authorities to halt the execution.

“Executing a person with a incapacity, who was convicted after an investigation and trial that supplied no disability-specific lodging, violates worldwide regulation and will not deter crime,” Emina Ćerimović, senior incapacity rights researcher at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement.

“Singapore ought to commute Nagaenthran Dharmalingam’s sentence and amend its legal guidelines to make sure that nobody is subjected to the loss of life penalty, definitely not folks with mental or psychosocial disabilities.”

Surendran, the lawyer, mentioned the execution order was “sickening past perception.”

“We’ll work till the final minute to avoid wasting Nagaenthran however after all, as you possibly can see time is operating brief,” he mentioned.

Household ‘shocked’

Dharmalingam’s household, who dwell in Ipoh, northwestern Malaysia, have been notified of his impending execution solely on October 26. His lawyer in Singapore, M. Ravi posted the letter to Fb, calling the order “state sanctioned homicide.”

The letter stipulated solely 5 members of Dharmalingam’s household could be allowed to enter Singapore and would wish to cope with an inventory of Covid laws.

A number of relations who managed to get to Singapore and meet with Dharmalingam in Changi jail are “shocked” at his situation, Surendran mentioned.

“They see a very totally different individual, they are not in a position to get via to him,” he mentioned.

It was additionally a “super problem” for them to journey to Singapore from Malaysia because of the varied monetary prices and Covid restrictions imposed, he mentioned. “It has been very troublesome for the household.”

Surendran mentioned the clock was ticking however they might do all the things they’ll to avoid wasting Dharmalingam.

If the execution goes forward, Singapore could be in breach “not solely of customary worldwide regulation, but additionally their very own obligations below the UN conference on the rights of disabled individual, which they’ve signed and ratified,” Surendran mentioned.

Source link


News7h: Update the world's latest breaking news online of the day, breaking news, politics, society today, international mainstream news .Updated news 24/7: Entertainment, the World everyday world. Hot news, images, video clips that are updated quickly and reliably

Related Articles

Back to top button
Immediate Peak