Indian-origin man got sentence of death in Singapore for heroin smuggling

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Srivijayan Prabagaran  caught with the drug while trying to enter Singapore and was sentenced to death in 2014.

A 29-year-old Indian-origin man was caught for drugs trafficking charges in Singapore on July 14, 2017 despite calls by the U.N. and rights groups to halt his capital punishment. Srivijayan Prabagaran was sentenced to death in 2014 after he was caught with 22.24g of heroin while trying to enter Singapore.

Prabagaran had his death sentence carried out at Singapore’s Changi Prison Complex, said the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB). He was arrested in April 2012 at Woodlands Checkpoint in the main causeway to southern Peninsular Malaysia. Two packets of the drug were recovered from the vehicle he was driving, the CNB said in a statement.

On July 13, 2017, Prabagaran’s lawyer, Choo Zheng Xi, on instructions from Prabagaran’s family, asked the Singapore apex court to stay his client’s death sentence on the grounds that his appeal in Malaysia was pending. Judges of Appeal Chao Hick Tin, Andrew Phang and Tay Yong Kwang called the attempt to halt Prabagaran’s execution because of proceedings in another country “an abuse of process”.

“The judiciary of each country is entitled to act in accordance with its Constitution and its laws,” Channel News Asia quoted Judge Chao as saying. “No judiciary of one country interferes in the judicial process of another country,” he said. Prabagaran had a pending appeal before the Malaysian Court of Appeal to institute proceedings against Singapore in the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Amnesty International had raised concerns about the fairness of the trial, including the alleged failure of the authorities “to follow up leads and call on key witnesses that would corroborate his version of events”.

The United Nations Human Rights (OHCHR) South East Asia Regional office had called on Singapore to halt the scheduled execution of Prabagaran, and had urged the government to immediately reinstate a moratorium on the use of the death penalty.

 

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