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Death warrants to be read to four more convicted murderers
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June 11 Port of Spain Trinidad: The Attorneys General office here has confirmed that death warrants are to be read to four more convicted murderers next week as the Government continues its drive to hang prisoners on death row.

The state will be reading warrants to prisoners, including those who may have an expectation of having their sentence commuted to life after the Roodal judgment in which the Privy Council held that the death sentence was not mandatory in T&T.

The sources say the State is not expecting to be successful in each case but it is prepared to read the death warrants and to pursue hanging all the convicted murderers.

“Our strategy is clear...we will read the death warrants,” one of the sources said.

“If they get a stay then the matters will have to be pursued and eventually it will reach a conclusion and, unless a court orders that their sentence be commuted, they will be sent to the gallows. “It may take a while but hangings will resume.” 

It is understood that the four convicted killers sent letters to the Mercy Committee to ask for the death penalty to be reviewed in their cases. The committee is due to sit on Monday.

Only yesterday (Friday) convicted killer Lester Pitman was given a reprieve from the hangman’s noose when his lawyers were able to secure a stay of execution.

Pitman, 27, was sentenced to death in July, 2004, after he was convicted of the December 2001 triple murder of English-born agriculturist John Cropper, his mother-in-law Maggie Lee and sister-in-law Lynette Lithgow-Pearson.

The Government intens to challenge the suggestion that some of the present death row inmates had a legitimate expectation that their sentence would be commuted.

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