Texas Executes Mexican Man Despite White House Appeal

Opponents say that Humberto Leal was denied help from his home country that could have helped him avoid the death penalty.

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Humberto Leal was executed despite pleas for a stay of execution. (Google)

Michael Grazyk of the Associated Press is reporting that the U.S. Supreme Court refused to block Texas from executing a Mexican citizen, despite a White House-backed appeal that claimed the case could affect other foreigners arrested in the U.S. and Americans in legal trouble abroad.

Humberto Leal was executed Thursday evening for the 1994 rape and murder of a San Antonio teenager after his attorneys, supported also by the Mexican government and other diplomats, unsuccessfully sought a stay. They argued that Leal was denied help from his home country that could have helped him avoid the death penalty.

From the death chamber, Leal repeatedly apologized and then shouted "Viva Mexico!" as the lethal drugs began taking effect. The 38-year-old mechanic was sentenced to death for killing 16-year-old Adria Sauceda, whose brutalized naked body was found hours after the two left a street party.

It's hard to have sympathy for someone who committed such a horrible crime against a teenager, but he should have been given the option of speaking with someone at the Mexican Consulate. As much as Americans travel abroad, particularly to Mexico, we should be able expect the same option if we get charged with a crime while abroad. Thanks to this execution, the door has been opened for doing the same thing to us that was done to Leal. People can be executed for lesser crimes than this abroad.

Read more at Yahoo News. 

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