Saturday, January 14, 2006

Van Nguyen execution prompts Singapore's Law Society to give death penalty a fair airing

Channel NewsAsia reports an "eight-man Law Society committee - comprising lawyers, a law academic and a former judicial commissioner - will study judicial and death penalty systems in countries such as Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Hong Kong and India and compare it with Singapore's...Admitting that the review had something to do with the saga involving executed Australian drug trafficker Nguyen Tuong Van, Mr Jeyaretnam said the society had received a "flurry" of letters from foreign bar associations asking for its views on the death penalty.

The Singapore law profession has mixed views on the death penalty, he said, but the society wanted to see whether it had a "collective view" or if it could "develop" one.

Other than conducting surveys within the law profession, the committee will also hear views from people who are against the death penalty on such grounds as religion, said Mr Jeyaretnam."

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