29 year old Prabakaran Vijayan of Malaysia executed today in Singapore

Jay Anderson
July 15, 2017

Prabagaran Srivijayan was sentenced to death by a Singapore court in 2014, after he was caught with 22.24 grams of diamorphine drug while entering the country.

Prabagaran Srivijayan, 29, was arrested in April 2012 at Woodlands Checkpoint after two packets containing the drugs were recovered from the Malaysian-registered Hyundai Sonata he was driving.

The execution was criticised by rights groups who had earlier this week urged Singapore to halt it while the Malaysian appeal was pending.

The watchdog said drug-related crimes did not fall under "most serious crimes" category and that worldwide law and standards must prohibit the use of the death penalty for such cases.

Prabagaran's petition for clemency was also unsuccessful, said a media statement from the Central Narcotics Bureau yesterday. Court documents said Prabagaran had borrowed the auto from a friend to enter Singapore on that day because he could not use his motorcycle.

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His application for leave was dismissed by Malaysia's High Court in March, and he appealed to Malaysia's Court of Appeal, which has yet to give its decision. Judges of Appeal Chao Hick Tin, Andrew Phang and Tay Yong Kwang called the attempt to stop Srivijayan's execution because of proceedings in another country "an abuse of process".

"That an appeal was pending in 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", said its director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, James Gomez.

Prabagaran then went to the Malaysian courts, seeking to compel the Malaysian government to institute proceedings against Singapore in the International Court of Justice. The rights group had also mentioned the alleged failure of the authorities "to follow up leads and call on key witnesses that would corroborate his version of events". The death penalty is an effective deterrent to crime and has rejected calls to abolish capital punishment, maintained Singapore consistently.

In 2016, four people were executed - two for murder and two for drug trafficking - while at least 38 people were known to be on death row at the end of that year.

Other reports by BadHub

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