Singapore on Wednesday, April 27th 2022 executed a Malaysian man with a mental disability condemned for a drug offence in spite of outcries from different pressure groups including Amnesty International in Malaysia.
Nagaenthran Dharmalingam, who trafficked a small amount of heroin into the country, was hanged. His case sparked widespread criticism because he was believed to be mentally disabled.
According to a post by Amnesty International on their Twitter account, Nagaenthran Dharmalingam’s family confirmed their son was executed this morning.
The Human Rights group Amnesty International who previously called the trial “a travesty of justice,” said it was “unspeakably heartbroken at this incredible cruelty.”
“May he rest in peace. May the fight against the death penalty continue in his memory.”
“Life is precious. #AbolishTheDeathPenalty”
Nagaenthran Dharmalingam was hanged for attempting to smuggle less than 43 grams (1.5 ounces) of heroin into Singapore.
The city-state’s government has said its use of the death penalty for drug crimes is made clear at the borders.
His case sparked widespread criticism because he was believed to be mentally disabled with an IQ of only 69.
His brother Navin Kumar said the execution had been carried out and said the body would be sent back to Malaysia, where a funeral would be held in the town of Ipoh.
Dharmalingam was convicted and sentenced to death in 2010
The 34-year-old Dharmalingam had been on death row for more than a decade.
His lawyers had filed multiple appeals against his execution but a Singapore court on Tuesday had turned down a last-minute legal challenge put forward by his mother.
At the end of Tuesday’s hearing, Dharmalingam and his family reached through a gap in a glass screen to grasp each others’ hands tightly as they wept.
Rights groups condemn the death penalty
“Hanging an intellectually disabled, mentally unwell man because he was coerced into carrying less than three tablespoons of diamorphine is unjustifiable and a flagrant violation of international laws that Singapore has chosen to sign up to,” Maya Foa, director of non-governmental organization Reprieve told the Associated Press.
lo/wmr (AP, Reuters)