23 Nov 2005

Last minute clemency bid for Nguyen


From ABC News online.
Van Nguyen's family visited him in jail this morning. The convicted drug smuggler is set to be hanged on December 2.
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Victoria's Attorney-General Rob Hulls is tonight preparing to fly to Singapore to plead for the life of death row inmate Van Nguyen.
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The family of convicted Australian drug trafficker Van Nguyen has visited him in jail.
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Last minute clemency bid for Nguyen

Victoria's Attorney-General has secured a meeting with a senior Singaporean government minister on Thursday to present a last minute plea for condemned Melbourne man Van Nguyen.

A group of European Union parliamentarians has also appealed for clemency for Nguyen during a visit to Singapore.

Nguyen was convicted in Singapore of trying to smuggle 400 grams of heroin and is due to be executed on December 2.

Attorney General Rob Hulls has changed his arrangements for an overseas trip to make the unscheduled stopover in Singapore to plea for clemency for Nguyen.

The Attorney-General will deliver a letter containing the plea from the Premier Steve Bracks to the Government of Singapore to spare the 25-year-old's life.

Mr Hulls has told Lateline he will propose a prisoner exchange program to Singapore's Senior Minister of State for Law and Home Affairs, Ho Peng Kee.

"I am vehemently opposed and I know that Steve Bracks is vehemently opposed to the mandatory death penalty and I think it is incumbent upon me, as Attorney-General, to take a very strong message from the Premier of Victoria to urge, to implore the Singaporean Government not to embark upon this final act and execute this young man," he said.

"I'll be making it pretty clear that there is a very strong feeling in Australia against executing this young man, that all avenues should be exhausted prior to them taking this final step, and it would be a final step."

Family visits

The family of Nguyen have visited him in Changi prison in Singapore.

Nguyen's mother and his twin brother Khoa arrived at the jail this morning with staff from Australia's High Commission in Singapore.

They were inside for an hour, the first of what is expected to be daily visits.

Nguyen's lawyers are still desperately trying to find avenues to stop the execution and want the Federal Government to take the case to the International Court of Justice.

Prime Minister John Howard says he does not believe that would succeed and that Singapore is not likely to reconsider pleas for clemency for Nguyen.

European MEPs

Meanwhile, European parliamentarians have criticised Singapore's mandatory death penalty and urged the Government to stop Nguyen's execution.

"The death penalty is firmly rejected in the European Parliament, but it is applied here. Clearly, we have different positions," Hartmut Nassauer, chairman of the delegation for relations with South-East Asia, told reporters at a briefing in Singapore.

"We believe in universal democracy, rights and human law."

Singapore, which has the highest execution rate in the world relative to population according to a 2004 report by Amnesty International, has a compulsory death penalty for murder and drug trafficking.

Frithjof Schmidt, a member of the European Green Party, urged the Australian Government to take the case to an international court.

"There should be a debate in an international court, given the gravity of the punishment for someone just transporting drugs," Mr Schmidt told Reuters.

The delegates met Nguyen's Singapore-based lawyer during their visit, he said.

-ABC/Reuters

12 comments:

Renegade Eye said...

I found this blog surfing.

I hope he doesn't get executed.

Regards.

Anonymous said...

I found this blog surfing.

I hope he does get executed.

Regards.

Patriot said...

Didn't know Afganistan has internet access.

the second anonymous said...

I found this blog surfing.

I found this absolutely ridiculous. A non-Singaporean blogging on Singaporean issues with a bunch of jokers clowning and plugging for clemency of this Australian drug peddler who is a Vietnamese.

Is this all this blog is about? If you broke the law, face the penalty.

By the way, if this blog is intended “to discuss social and political issues related to Singapore and the South East Asia region”, blog entries of varying articles would do this blog good.

LF said...

Hi steven,

I know most of u folks oppose the death penalty, but where's the objectivity and respect for the opposing view?

Rgds

Anonymous said...

Old Man Lee set up the shop and hes gotta eat his own pie!

- Watching the good show and enjoying every min of it! = )

The real deal said...

I am glad that Singapore is standing firm on this issue. A small country makes a far larger and more powerful country and its people impotent. And this is the real issue: it rankles a lot of people. And it rankles even further that on the one side there is front page coverage and treatment of this issue, while on the other, there is the most minimum coverage. That is marvellous: Singapore should not give *these people* any importance whatsoever.

soci said...

Hi IF, "objectivity and respect for the opposing view?", Yes I am having a hard time finding the pro-death penalty argument in the Singaporean press. If you find a letter, journalistic or researched pro-death penalty argument can you submit it here in the comment section for us to read?

Anonymous said...

I am for brutally killing the drug smuggler because that is the law of our land. The law of the land is meant to be respected.

People taking video via your camcorder or cellphones without submitting the MFA must be jailed. If they took naked pictures of gfs or wives, triple the punishment.

Those who possess illegal MP3s, games, programs, videos pornography in their PC should be jailed. LAW OF THE LAND.

If you talk about politics on the website without registration you can be jailed.

Streaming Mp3s over the radio is an offence, you are officially a radio station. So is steaming a video over MSN is an offence.

Homosexual sex is an offence, Oral sex is an offence.

If your friendly auntie from Malaysia decided to stay at your home for dinner and a night, she happens to be an overstayer, its an offence, you can be jailed.

That is why I don't have blogs with anything more than "I took my dog out for a walk".

The blog writers should be arrested for publishing political stuff without a permit.

Anonymous said...

The real deal...

Absolutely right, I applaud you. Singapore must take a stand and not cave in. What do those foreigner about Singapore? Can they even hold chopsticks?

We should not stop there

Those angmohs who want free speech... screw them. We must have balls and toughen the sedition act, teach them not to meddle in our affairs.

How about those who want more political freedom in Singapore. Screw them! WE, SINGAPOREANS decided to have the PAP in power. The election results proved it. They want freedom of association, screw them. This law against this freedom is getting lax, even 20 of my classmates can gather without punishment. We should enforce the law to teach those foreigner a lesson.

And those Gay activists. Screw them too (Not Literally). We should tell to feck off in the best possible way, throw an opposition member into prison for being a gay.

Look at Malaysia, they stand up to those Western liberal nut cases. We should be like them.

And Mr McDermott, get your sorry arse our of here. You should be telling those who wants freedom of worship to screw off. Scotland hung non believers of Christianity 200 years ago. They should do it again.

^^

Anonymous said...

Anon 6.28pm, what breed of dog is that exactly, and do you live in a HDB flat? 'Cos that could be an offence too! And it's off to jail with you too!

Anonymous said...

straits times censors anything that is anti-s'pore...we shld censor everything that is pro-s'pore here to be fair :)