Texas Defies UN, Executes Killer

World Court had ordered hearing
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 6, 2008 2:33 AM CDT
Jose Medellin was executed in Huntsville, Texas Tuesday for the gang rape and murder of Elizabeth Pena, 16, and Jennifer Ertman, 14, during a gang initiation.   (AP Photo/Texas Department of Criminal Justice, File)
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(Newser) – A Mexican national convicted of raping and murdering two girls was executed in Texas yesterday in defiance of an international court. Attorneys for Jose Medellin, 33, had argued that authorities violated an international treaty when Medellin was denied access to Mexican consular officials after his arrest, reports the Houston Chronicle. The United Nations world court ordered a hearing on the issue 4 years ago, but Texas officials refused.   

Medellin apologized for his crimes in his final statement. "I'm sorry that my actions brought you pain," he said. "I hope this brings you the closure that you seek.'' A friend of the family of one of the victims said: "The girls didn't get a second chance, why should he?" But a legal expert warned that Americans abroad could be hurt when other nations ignore similar treaties.