Florida Schedules Execution of Man Who Defended Himself, But Could Not Speak English
The last execution scheduled for 2006 involves a Florida inmate, Angel Nieves-Diaz, who defended himself at his trial and needed an interpreter because he did not speak English.
Diaz, a native of Puerto Rico, was convicted and sentenced to death in 1986 for a murder in connection with a robbery of a bar in Miami in 1979.
The case sat idle for 5 years until an accomplice, who was already serving a life sentence, came forward implicating Diaz. The accomplice received another life sentence.
Diaz's execution is scheduled for December 13 and would be the 4th execution in Florida this year, the most executions in that state in 6 years.
In addition to his claims that his representation failed to produce a fair trial, Diaz is also challenging the lethal injection process in Florida
Groups in Puerto Rico, which bars the death penalty in its constitution, are urging that Diaz receive clemency from the governor.(Sun-Sentinel (AP), Nov. 14, 2006; Miami Herald, Nov. 15, 2006; letter from Civil Rights Commission of Puerto Rico, Nov. 20, 2006).
See Representation and Arbitrariness.