A North Darfur criminal court has sentenced three men, found guilty of stealing cooking oil, to amputation of their right hand from the wrist. According to an advocacy group, the men were sentenced after a hearing session ‘that failed to meet the most basic fair trial standards’.
The defendants, who are currently being held in North Darfur’s Shala prison, were not provided with a defense lawyer and were sentenced on 31 March after they were found guilty of ‘capital theft’.
Abdel Latif Ahmed Ibrahim, Ahmed Idris Salih, and Ali Salih are accused of stealing cooking oil worth 14,700 Sudanese pounds (about US$3,300) from a factory in El Fasher on 26 December 2012.
The African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) said the judge’s sentence contradicts Sudanese law, which requires the accused [in amputation cases] to be represented by a defense lawyer.
ACJPS says that Sudan, as a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), made a commitment to an absolute ban on torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
The families of the men have hired a defense lawyer to appeal the decision.