A file picture showing a general view of the Asian city-state of Singapore. EFE/FILE/How Hwee Young

Singapore executes woman for drug trafficking for first time in 2 decades

Singapore, Jul 28 (EFE).- Singapore on Friday executed a woman for drug trafficking for the first time in almost two decades, amid an upsurge in executions linked to drug crimes in the Asian city-state.

Saridewi Djamani, a 45-year-old Singaporean, was sentenced to death in July 2018 for trafficking 30 grams of heroin, according to a statement by the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) on Friday.

According to the nonprofit Transformative Justice Collective (TJC), she is the first woman executed in the Southeast Asian country since 2004 and the fourth person sent to the gallows so far this year – all of them for drug-related crimes.

Singapore has one of the most draconian anti-drug laws in the world, and executions for drug crimes have witnessed an increase in recent months.

On Wednesday, a 56-year-old man, also a native of the Asian city-state, was hanged for trafficking about 50 grams of heroin, whereas the TJC reported on Thursday of another execution scheduled for Aug.3.

In total, the island has executed four prisoners since April, and 15 since March 2022, according to estimates by the nonprofit.

The CNB said in the statement Friday that the island’s Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Saridewi’s lawyers on Oct.6 of last year, and that the process complied with legal requirements.

According to TJC, she was one of two women on death row in Singapore, and the first to be executed since Yen May Woen – also for drug offenses – in 200.

The year’s first first execution in April, sparked criticism all around as the person was convicted for attempting to traffic marijuana – whose consumption is legal in neighboring countries such as Thailand.

Moreover, concerns were raised about the judicial process, given that the person concerned and those from his circle claimed he had never seen or touched the drug.

The UN unsuccessfully called on Singapore to halt the execution.

The prosperous city-state, with one of the highest per capita GDP on the planet, has the death penalty for drug trafficking in cases involving a minimum of 500 grams of marijuana and 15 grams in the case of heroin.

After a two-year halt in executions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Singapore broke records last year by hanging 11 prisoners in a few months, including a heroin trafficker with mental disabilities. EFE