Barbarism Watch: Saudi Arabia Still Uses Crucifixion

Everything old is new again. You may think crucifixion has gone out of penological style. But not in Saudi Arabia, where a group of seven young men face execution for robbing jewelry stores.

The main defendant, Sarhan al-Mashayeh, will be crucified for three days. The others will face firing squads. Qahtani faced a judge three times during eight years in detention. He said the judge did not assign a lawyer to defend them and did not listen to complaints of torture.

"We showed him the marks of torture and beating, but he didn't listen," he said. "I am talking to you now and my relatives are telling me that the soil is prepared for our executions tomorrow," he said.

Saudi Arabia follows a strict interpretation of Islamic sharia law under which people convicted of murder, rape or armed robbery can be executed, usually by sword. Several people were reported to have been crucified in Saudi Arabia last year.