Dear Friends, this is so sad especially for our dear friend, San Nguyen. San who lives in Oklahoma worked very hard with the rest of the Vietnamese community to stop Mr. Le's execution.
Huang Thanh Le was executed in Oklahoma by lethal injection despite pleas that his death sentence be commuted to life from organizations including the Vietnamese-American Community, the ACLU, and many others. Huang Le was charged and convicted of murdering Hai Nguyen, a friend, in the heat of passion after his friend betrayed him and withheld $10,000 from him.
While the murder of Nguyen was certainly a tragedy, by no means did Huang Le's crime qualify as 'the worst of the worst.'
Hung Le suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder caused by the violence he suffered while in Vietnam and during his harrowing escape to the United States.
At his trial, Huang Le's attorney failed to obtain a proper psychological evaluation for his client. Had he done so, he would have learned that Huang suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, which contributed to his reaction.
Although Oklahoma's Pardon and Parole Board unanimously recommended the commutation of Le's sentence to life, Governor Brad Henry rejected the recommendation.
Huang Le's was the third Pardon and Parole Board recommendation Henry rejected despite his pre-election promise to support a moratorium on executions. Huang Thanh Le is the forth person executed in Oklahoma in 2004.
You may remember San from being at CURE's First International Conference in New York City in 2001. San also plans to be at the 8th National Convention this June in Washington. Charlie
By Charlie Sullivan CURE posted 29 March 04
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