Malaysian Datchinamurthy Kataiah will be executed in Singapore.
Lawyers for Liberty counsel N. Surendran argues Singapore’s decision to execute Malaysian Datchinamurthy Kataiah on April 29 is in criminal contempt and illegal.
He appealed to the Singapore government to withdraw Datchinamurthy’s execution notice, which was issued on April 21, and permit the court proceedings to proceed without hindrance.
“To block a person on death row from access to courts by executing him prior to the hearing, is in breach of international law as well as the Singapore Constitution,” he said.
Surendran voiced his disbelief at the news, which he delivered to Datchinamurty’s family via a letter from the Singapore Prison Service dated April 21. Datchinamurthy’s mother in Johor received the letter.
“Malaysian citizen Datchinamurthy Katiah will be executed on Friday (April 29) in Singapore,” the statement said.
Datchinamurthy was kept at Singapore’s Changi prison after the High Court found him guilty of trafficking 44.96 grammes of diamorphine in 2015. A special certificate from Singapore’s Attorney General spared his Singaporean co-accused the death penalty.
“We are appalled and disturbed that Singapore plans to hang Datchinamurthy although he has a legal challenge still pending in the Singapore High Court.
“This case (Originating Summons No 188 of 2022) is on the court hearing list for May 20.
“The execution notice, issued despite ongoing legal proceedings, is a fundamental breach of Datchinamurthy’s right to life and right to a fair trial contained in Article 9(1) of the Constitution.
“No civilised country in the world hangs a person in the middle of a court process,”
Surendran went on to say that the Singapore Prison Service and the Singapore Home Minister are strict about contempt of court.
“The Attorney General of Singapore, having knowledge and complicit in the planned execution, is equally in contempt of court.
“Coming in the wake of mentally disabled Malaysian Nagaenthiran Dharmalingam’s scheduled execution just two days earlier on April 27, it is clear that Singapore is now engaged in a reckless and bloody execution spree, in disregard of the rule of law and civilised norms,”
In 2009, he was arrested and charged with trafficking 42.72 grammes of heroin, a crime that carries a mandatory death sentence.
In 2011, his challenge against his conviction and sentence was dismissed.
Based on testimony from four psychological and psychiatric specialists, the Singapore High Court concluded in 2017 that Nagaenthran did not qualify for life imprisonment.
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