Funfair's electric chair closed after protests

01:43, Jan 31 2009

An Italian funfair closed an attraction where a life-sized dummy was "executed" in an electric chair following protests by opponents of capital punishment.

The macabre exhibit at the Luna Park in northern Milan allowed visitors to insert coins and watch the dummy strapped to an electric chair go through his death throes – convulsing, smoking, and slumping from the simulated charge.

Milan's mayor, church organisations and "Hands Off Cain," a group working to abolish the death penalty worldwide, had all protested against it.

Hands Off Cain called it "a demented and culturally devastating attraction, which undoes years of work on the part of those struggling against the death penalty".

It was a way of profiting from the "base and bestial aspects of our society," it said.

The park owners said they had shut down the attraction and on Thursday it was covered with canvas.

Capital punishment is banned in Italy.