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China executes British man convicted of drug smuggling

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"He would've believed that for sure, about getting a big hit in China"

He's going to get his big hit in China, for sure.

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“ ... The rights of the defendant have been fully guaranteed,”

Does that include being laughed at and humiliated? Way to go China, you're the Japan of the 1930s: shoot first and don't ask questions.

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I don't understand, does everyone who commits a crime have a mental problem, or only the ones that get caught? I'm glad China is sending a message to other drug smugglers, your whiny western excuses for commiting crimes will not cut it here...

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HineyWHimsy western excuses? Hmmm. Well let's see what defense the Japanese lady in indonesia comes up with... Stupidity may be accepted.

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I hate my usless spell checker... Whiney.

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I wonder who has the movie rights for the screenplay that someone, somewhere, is obviously writing for this story.

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If this guy isn't mentally ill, and he was willin' to import poison into Communist China in exchange for fame...

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sarge, this isn't really a thread for ultra-lame jokes, my friend.

The guy should be given clemency.

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While reasonable may debate the death penalty in the case of murder, the death penalty for something as insignificant as drugs is the height of insane inhuman barbarism.

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br, boy, you sure know how to blame the victim... and minimize what this guy was accused of bringin' in to a country not his own. Very bad manners indeed, to say the least.

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While reasonable may debate the death penalty in the case of murder, the death penalty for something as insignificant as drugs is the height of insane inhuman barbarism.

China have said he had enough heroin to kill over 26,000 people, so perhaps it isnt so insane. If the guy is (or pehaps was now) mentally ill, why did his family let him go to China by himself? Its a sad story.

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You scratch my back, I scratch yours. If Britain has nothing to offer China in exchange, then I doubt that China will listen. If China makes an announcement at the last moment that they have decided to give him a reprieve on humanitarian grounds, I am sure they will expect some return favor/favour. The trouble is they cannot be sure that British politicians have long memories. Conversely, they may be convinced that after all this degrading pleading, British politicians will quickly forget any present Chinese kindness. Now, if Britain were to say publicly that they respect Chinese law and Chinese trials, this would be worth something to China. Or if they were to say that the failure of Copenhagen was not China's fault after all, but the US administration's fault... then we might be talking.

But even if they stop the execution, as I suspect they will, who will look after this man for the rest of his life?

There but for the grace of God/Allah go I. Not wishing this man's fate on anyone.

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another opium war?

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woman: another opium war?

"Ahen, ahen!"

(You need to understand Japanese to get the joke.)

But seriously, I guess that if the authorities are so harsh, this means that there is a potentially serious heroin problem within China.

I bet that guy hasn't read a newspaper in years and lacks the common sense and general knowledge that many of the readers here might claim to possess. In such circumstances, the idea of carrying someone else's bag might be quite conceivable.

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Why is it that so many people have so much hope for China, but the government keeps show itself up like a crack witch doctor? This news is truly discouraging to me and I'm extremely sure this is just a poor man with a mental disability. Easily taken advantage of by anyone who thinks they can use another human beings disabity for their own gain.

No fair trial, I sincerely doubt he was allowed any defense or support at all from anyone. I hope with all my heart something gets done about this, but with China's lack of notifications and fact they most likely didn't bother to determine if he was sane enough to represent himself at trial. What a load of crock. Just another example as to why they should be in no position to be a leading world power. Disgusting.

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if he's got all these wonderful supportive family members, why was he living on the streets in poland ? why, when they found out he was travelling to a foreign country with drastically different culture, did nobody think to give him a couple of basic warnings about international travel ?

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drug smuggling is disgusting. just look at what's happening in Mexico when the drug kingpins takes over.

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This is a British national. I assume he visited a doctor at some point in his life and has medical records. If he has been officially diagnosed with a mental disorder the first his family (for letting him sleep on the streets in Poland) and the China (for killing him) should be condemed. But if not, this all just sounds like a bit of an excuse to me. Whenever we get Australians, Brits, US nationals in court in 'less civilised' places like this everyone is up in arms about it and we are all so quick to complain.

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Death penalty for drugs is ridiculous - there shouldbe no penalties for drugs. But this loser knew what the penalties are in China and still took the risk - so Western countries complaining that this is inhumane are wrong. As for the crazy angle, nice try but everyone says this when they are caught.

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Why should there be no penalties for drugs when dozens of people are murdered every day in the slums of various south american cities to fuel the drug trade?

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Another reason why to stay away from China.

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Today,complains, complains...tommorrow, profits, profits and doing business as usual with China.

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details of the trial are heresay on the part of both sides. who's lying? most likely both are. all we truly do know is that he got caught with a whole whack of smack. there must be some angry chinese mafia, read, public officials, who are missing out on their regular heroin profits for the month he got busted in.

he got busted, so now he's got to deal with it. gordon brown, as soon as you get yer ass out of the middle east, i might have an ounce of sympathy for what happens to your law-breaking citizens in other countries

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From the picture i saw on Yahoo he looks strong both physically and mentally, no sympathies here.

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From the picture i saw on Yahoo he looks strong both physically and mentally, no sympathies here.

from a picture? what does being physically strong have to do with ANYTHING here? and you can tell from a photo posted on the internet that he has no mental illness? dumbest thing I have heard all week by far

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If this guy isn't mentally ill, and he was willin' to import poison into Communist China in exchange for fame...

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Why should there be no penalties for drugs when dozens of people are murdered every day in the slums of various south american cities to fuel the drug trade?

Because if these drugs were legally available and regulated then there would be no need to kill over them. Do people get killed over alcohol or tobacco?

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This sod ran a business, travelled around the world, but it mentally ill? Nice excuse from the bleeding heart liberals. Being mentally ill still does not cause someone to smuggle drugs. He got exactly what he deserved.

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Don't sell drugs and if you do, don't get caught sigh -_-

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Because if these drugs were legally available and regulated then there would be no need to kill over them. Do people get killed over alcohol or tobacco?

@valmain - I agree that if the drugs were legally available and regulated people wouldnt get killed. But they are not legally available, so what is your point? That drugs should be legalised? Again I agree. But they are not and probably never will be, so by using them, smuggling them, selling the etc, you are contributing to the pain caused by the drug trade.

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almost 4 kilograms of heroin

Guilty. He broke their laws, he was punished by their laws. The herd won't thin itself somtimes.

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He was in China and so was punished according to China's laws...but I think the guy deserved a mental health assessment for sure. The death penalty for a drug crime, even smuggling, is way too steep. Yes, heroine is a very dangerous drug and does kill people but there are a lot of legal drugs that are dangerous too.

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For all those saying that this sends a message to drug smugglers, you're right and wrong. You're right in that it sends a message to them that they should NEVER do it themselves, and will further encourage then to use mules. And that is also sadly where you are wrong in the KIND of message it sends to them -- it will not deter them from smuggling at all.

This is extremely sad, particularly the comments about the judges laughing and what not. China needs a slap to wake up on this issue, among others.

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This wouldn't be the first time that the UK has tried to control China thru drugs. Until the rich drug dealers/bankers start taking responsibility for their actions expect more death.

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I think China uses the death penalty to mostly get rid of "undesirables." Your social status plays a big part in the sentence you get.

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A deplorable and despicable act which does not bear any resemblance to any kind of justice.

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According the article, he was arrested in 2007. So his trail was lasted for two years. Therefore they have already spent sometimes.

Not only in China! Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia have death penalty for punishing for drug trafficking. Singapore and Malaysia adopted the British common law. However they are not soft on drug smugglers like their old master. Their uniform voice is " Do not mess with us".

If he has a mental problem, why did his family and authority allowed him to travel to oversea alone? They might come from another planet if they thought he will be safe & sound. His destination is not an English speaking nation which is ruled by the Westminster common law.

China is ruled buy communist authoritarian with tough military style law. If he traveled to Australia, New Zealand or Canada, he will be still alive.

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"lured by men playing on his dreams to record a pop song for world peace." ... by smuggling 4 kilograms of heroin to a communist country? He has mental problem for sure..

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Busted, then plea for the mentally ill defense... too bad it doesn't work in China

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Gordon Brown should shut up about this. If he really wants to stick up for someone he should do something about the US extradition of Gary McKinnon, a UK citizen with Apergers who has never even been to the US but faces the prospect of spending the rest of his life in jail there. Now thats an injustice. This story on the other hand - being caught with smuggling 4kg of heroin - thats indefensible.

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Nice excuse from the bleeding heart liberals

I believe that excuse came from his family, who probably know him a tad bit better than any 'bleeding heart liberals' you may have heard of.

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smithinjapan: "sarge, this really isn't a thread for ultra-lame jokes, my friend. The guy should be given clemency"

I'm not your friend, I would never tell an ultra-lame joke, let alone a lame joke, and since this guy, who had 4 kilos of heroin in his suitcase has been executed, I guess he's not going to get clemency.

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Not only in China! Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia have death penalty for punishing for drug trafficking. Singapore and Malaysia adopted the British common law. However they are not soft on drug smugglers like their old master. Their uniform voice is " Do not mess with us".

I'm not surprised the SE Asians and Chinese take a tough stance on drugs, considering what the British did with opium in China in the good old days.

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A report from the official Chinese news agency Xinhua said that China's Supreme People's Court had not been provided with any documentation proving that Mr Shaikh had a mental disorder. The Chinese judiciary apparently has not made any effort to make a mental health assessment. Executing this man without doing anything to get at the truth is appalling. In addition Chinese authorities had the gall to warn that criticism [of this inhumane, callous atrocity] would harm relations.

This wouldn't be the first time that the UK has tried to control China thru drugs. Until the rich drug dealers/bankers start taking responsibility for their actions expect more death.

Do you actually know what you are talking about?

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The facts are :

Akmal Shaikh was caught red handed with 4 KG of drugs.

He was caught in 2007. Now it is end of 2009 - he AND british had full TWO YEARS to show proof that if he was mentally ill that cloud his judgement in commiting this crime. There is nothing to show for this defence since he was never mentally ill.

China isn't some backward country with no CSI lab. His finger prints were ALL OVER the packaged drug. He IS GUILTY of the crime. (If someone had slip this into his bag - his finger prints should not be on it)

The so called defence - He is "Bipolar". This is the most ludicrious aspect of the defence. I am working in mental health research, and NOWHERE in ANY ACADEMIC CITATION shows Bipolar disorder affects MORAL JUDGEMENT.

It is common knowledge you LOOK AFTER your own luggage - you lock it and you don't open it for NO ONE in countries that have death penalties against drug traffikers. If you are caught with it in your luggage - it is your fault. There are countless cases like this happening EVERY YEAR in Indonesia (Australia's own Schapelle Corby and the Bali Nine) and Thailand, Cambodia, Singapore, Malaysia.. etc etc.
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dioditto has informed us of the facts the way he sees them, which is his right. The rest of the world sees the way things went through different lenses. E.g.: United Nations Special Rapporteur Philip Alston said: "We are informed that the initial conviction was based on a 30-minute hearing which would not seem to indicate due process or effective defence or presentation of evidence. We are then told that in the appeal requests to present medical evidence, requests to the court that it should appoint an expert to assess Mr Shaikh were all rejected. So, it's not very encouraging in fact that the Chinese courts were so dismissive of what appears to be at least an initial case."

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I say good on China. Japan is too soft on drugged-up losers and that's why they're everywhere now, from entertainers to the police themselves.

So what if the guy has some mental issues? Guess what happens once you give them special treatment? Everyone getting caught with kilos of sweet action will claim they had a traumatic experience when they were 6 and they should be let off too.

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I agree with the above comments, this man was caught in 2007 and now the gov't of UK comes to his defense. Some are calling the execution barbaric, but there are many countries who still do this - including the USA. I think he was guilty 110%. Good for China for making a scapegoat out of him. People would now think twice before trying to make a quick buck by playing stupid.

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just one joint on a beach in Bali will get you a life sentence. China did the right thing. Followed the rule of law. Pot should be legal. All drugs should be legal actually. Tax them well.

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Another triumph of leadership from the unelected Prime Minister of the UK. Gordon, you are woeful.

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He had "mental illness" but there were no records of this claim. Where was his GP (UK doctor)? Where was his family when he was homeless in Poland?

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Holy shi... ! They executed this guy? Wow. I guess I missed this on my news multi-screen which displays six all-news stations in real time.

The Chinese communists must've figured that after 58 years, it was time to tell foreigners that they're no longer exempt from the death penalty under their laws. If they did the 'bullet thing' that'd sure back up their message... a message particularly to those greedy, dumb and progressive Euros and Aussies who usually end up in these scenarios in Asia, thinkin' their governments are gonna pull them out of a shite of their own willful makin'.

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I'm not sure the Chinese followed due process here but then again I'm not sure the Chinese have the same standards of due process. It's their country and if you screw up there will be hell to pay. Same for Singapore and Malaysia. If you don't like it stay home.

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What proves beyond any doubt that he was mentally ill is the fact that he thought he could get away with smuggling 4 keys of heroin into China and not get executed if caught.

Truth is it was nothing but a stupid last minute excuse that didn’t work.

What most people here have tried to do is take a side, the Chinese are bad, the Chinese were right. The reality is that the Chinese are savage to their own so why expect them to act differently to anybody else? This was a drug smuggler that thought he could talk his way out of a death sentence, he failed and I for one couldn’t care less. That does not however say that I believe China is right in it’s easy use of the death sentence.

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I guess I missed this on my news multi-screen which displays six all-news stations in real time.

that explains a lot

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Den, it soon after got coverage in the first five minutes in the first half-hours segments.

The story that the defense brought up the 'mentally unwell' defense was duly noted.

Of the six, three are CNN or three of their sub-stations, one is MSNBC (ultra-left), one is FOX, and one is national weather.

Not to worry, my friend. Most of my 'news' is left of center.

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wow who would have thought that a police state would kill a mentally ill drug mule. Big shock, NOT.

The courts of China are a joke. They tried him in 1/2 hour. The courts themselves are not based on the rule of law but on keeping the police state in tact one head shot at a time.

Chinese justice is a joke.

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So much for the "Kinder, Gentler" Red China that the PRC has wanted ot exude....

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Do not traffic drugs in China, Thailand, Malaysia, and any other country which has the death penalty. Don't, idiots.

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Well, that certainly will dissuade people from smuggling drugs in China. I wish the U.S. would apply some of this to our Mexican border...

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Shaikh was born in Pakistan, and he migrated with his parents during his childhood to the United Kingdom. Shaikh was a Muslim, he married a Hindu who converted to Islam. They had two sons and a daughter together. His marriage ended in divorce. They lived in the United States in the 1980s, where Shaikh was an estate agent. They moved back to the United Kingdom when the business failed. He then started a mini-cab business in London but fell into bankruptcy. He subsequently moved to Poland where he married in Lublin; he had a son and daughter from that marriage. He then divorced and was wanted in 2007 by a Polish court for not paying alimonies. In 2006 he was sentenced by a Polish court for driving under the influence of alcohol with suspended one year jail sentence and prohibition of driving for three years. On average every 6 months he was visiting the Lublin City Council with new business proposals.

would you say this man is mental ill? too clever......

Muslim british got passport for transport heroin.

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Not sure if this was mentioned before, but I believe the British forcefully imported opium from India to China in the 1840's, which started the Opium War that China lost. And we all understand that this Shaikh was a British national, right?

JHansen, I can guarantee you that 1.4 billion Chinese believe that, in terms of this case, Chinese justice is certainly no joke.

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Not sure if this was mentioned before, but I believe the British forcefully imported opium from India to China in the 1840's, which started the Opium War that China lost. And we all understand that this Shaikh was a British national, right?

JHansen, I can guarantee you that 1.4 billion Chinese believe that, in terms of this case, Chinese justice is certainly no joke.

Actually, in those days tea was as big a commodity as Cocaine is today and at the time the only place one could get was China. The Chinese would not accept trade goods for their tea, nor any other form of payment other than gold or Silver. The worlds gold/and silver reserves could never cover the bill the for the thousands of tons of tea that europeans were buying, so blackmarketeers in China accepted Opium in place of gold due to its higher resale value in China. When the Emporess dawager forbade the importation of Opium, it was the same as if OPEC shut off the flow of Oil completely. No oil at any price! Entire economies would fall and mass unemployment. but try to get the Chinese gov to understand that! Or even accept that the currency exchange policy would have to change gradually. We are talking about a country that didn't care a bit about a little island called Hong Kong until the Brits came along and turned it into a financial powerhouse.

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VoXMan,

Or, try to have the British govt at the time of the opium trading understand that their actions would have millions of Chinese addicted to the drug, thereby weakening their country to the point that the term for China was changed from the Middle Kingdom, to 'the sick man of asia'.

Your ridiculous analagy is like saying that the US should abolish the DEA and simply let all the heroin from Asia, and cocaine from South America flow freely for the sake of world trade.

Tell that to your children.

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Please don't mention this Muslim as a British his from Pakistan and got british passport immigrating

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Please don't mention this Muslim as a British his from Pakistan and got british passport immigrating

he had a British passport,so he was British. if that is difficult for you to get your head around then I would imagine you are either a racist loon or just not too bright

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Don't do the crime if you can't do the time (in hell).

If countries executed drug dealers, would the US have the illegal drug problems it faces today?

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