2 comments May 13th, 2011 Headsman
On this date in 2005, Singapore hanged a 34-year-old for pot.
Shanmugam Murugesu, an ethnically Tamil Singaporean, was nabbed carrying a kilo of marijuana.
Your basic “wtf drug war” case study, this divorced father actually represented Singapore at international watersports competitions and otherwise led a productive, non-criminal life.
The city-state: a mite crazy over drugs. (And over the death penalty.) Mere mary jane is among the substances that can get you a death sentence there — carrying 500 grams or more is supposed to trigger automatic execution.
While awaiting that fate, Shanmugam befriended the young Australian drug mule and “simple soul” Van Tuong Nguyen, who was bound to follow in his footsteps; Shanmugam’s last appeal to his lawyer was “to save Nguyen Tuong Van’s life at all costs.”
(No luck, but it’s the thought that counts.)
Shanmugam Murugesu’s hanging was also notable as a civic event in Singapore for the landmark public protest (organized in large measure by the hanged man’s own family) it generated — a rarity for that “Disneyland with the death penalty”.
On this day..
- 1619: Johan van Oldenbarnevelt, laandsadvocaat - 2016
- 1803: Peter Stout - 2015
- 1559: The remains of David Joris, Anabaptist fugitive - 2014
- 1945: Bruno Dorfer and Rainer Beck, Wehrmacht deserters - 2013
- 1828: Carbonari in Ravenna - 2012
- 2005: Michael Ross, the Roadside Strangler - 2010
- 1880: Edwin Hoyt, in Bridgeport - 2009
- 1881: Not Billy the Kid - 2008