Singapore: Malaysian executed for drugs conviction after unfair trial a shocking violation of the human right to life

Responding to the news of Malaysian national Prabagaran Srivijayan’s execution in Singapore today, James Gomez, Amnesty International’s Director for South East Asia and the Pacific said: “This execution is a shocking violation of the human right to life. That this cruel punishment has been administered after a trial filled with flaws makes this flouting of international law all the more disturbing.

“That an appeal was pending on this case in his home country at the time of execution, and that there were serious concerns about the fairness of his trial, underlines a flagrant disregard for due process in profoundly dubious circumstances.”
Background

Prabagaran Srivijayan was convicted of drug trafficking and given a mandatory death sentence in 2012 after 22.24g of diamorphine was found in the arm rest of a car he borrowed. He has consistently maintained his innocence.

Prabagaran Srivijayan’s legal team have raised serious concerns about the fairness of his trial, including the authorities’ failure to follow up leads and call on key witnesses that would corroborate his version of events.

His legal representatives also launched a case in Malaysia in March 2017 to urge the country to seek the intervention of the International Court of Justice, with an appeal on the matter still being considered at the Court of Appeal. International safeguards for death row prisoners clearly state that the death penalty must not be carried out while appeals are pending.

An application for a stay of execution was filed at the Singaporean Court of Appeal but dismissed on 13 July.