Skip to comments.Prosecutors seek life sentence for Australian in Bali drug trial
Posted on 05/06/2005 1:26:38 PM PDT by JeffersonRepublic.com
DENPASAR, Indonesia (AFP) - Indonesian prosecutors sought a life sentence for an Australian woman on trial for allegedly smuggling a large quantity of marijuana onto the resort island of Bali.
They also demanded that Schapelle Corby, 27, who was arrested last October when customs officers at Bali's main airport found 4.1 kilograms (nine pounds) of the drug in her luggage, pay a fine of 100 million rupiah (10,460 dollars).
The former beauty student, who has denied the charge, shed tears as the prosecutor's request -- far short of the maximum permitted death penalty -- was translated in the court in the Balinese capital, Denpasar.
"The defendant has been proven, legally and convincingly of illegally and in contravention of the laws, importing class one narcotics," Prosecutor Ida Bagus Wiswantanu said.
Corby's case has attracted unprecedented media interest in her homeland, prompting the Australian government to lobby Indonesian legal authorities on her behalf.
The trial is one of the few sticking points in improving ties between the neighbours, which frayed in 1999 when Canberra sent peacekeepers to East Timor during Indonesia's bloody withdrawal from its former territory.
Wiswantanu said that the sentence would reflect the fact that Corby's alleged crime had sullied Bali's holiday island image and caused mental anguish to its people. Her plea of not guilty would also weigh against her.
The court was adjourned for one week as Corby repeatedly said, "it's not fair," while hugging her lawyer and sobbing sister, Mercedes.
Corby's Australian lawyers have said that they had obtained new evidence that she was unwittingly used as a courier by organised criminals trying to smuggle the drugs on a connecting flight from Brisbane to Sydney.
Indonesian Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda said Jakarta may agree to a request by Australia for Corby to serve time in her country if convicted, pending a legal agreement between the two nations.
Thursday's submission by prosecutors was only a recommendation, which judges can choose to ignore.
Indonesian courts have been handing out severe penalties in narcotics trials in the past few years as the country attempts to get tough on a growing drug abuse problem.
Thirty one death sentences for drug offences have been issued since 2000.
Two Thai nationals and an Indian convicted for drug trafficking in 1994 were executed, by firing squads, last year.
Nine more Australians are facing a possible death penalty in Bali for allegedly smuggling heroin after they were arrested earlier this week in a joint operation by Indonesian and Australian police.
Uh, if the drugs were planted on her then how was she breaking the law?
Wahh!! She's lucky she's not being hung.
Lesson is don't take vacations in corrupt Muslim countries. Any Australian would have to be nuts to go there.
We can debate the severity of the punishment (I think it way too harsh in this instance - No history of trafficking, no apparent ring - At least she hasn't fingered any yet, etc.) but from my perspective she knew what she was doing and is guilty.
You are right, they must be going soft, because that is exactly what they normally do. And they have hung a few Aussies for that very reason.
airport found 4.1 kilograms (nine pounds) of the drug in her luggage
not likely someone "planted" the stuff w/o her knowledge !
"Uh, if the drugs were planted on her then how was she breaking the law?"
That is what she is saying. Go to any US prison and ask the inmates if they are innocent or guilty, I'm sure a good deal of them will say they were set up.
There are nine other Aussie who will be facing the same charges and a man from India who has already had his punishment - death. Drug trafficing is a crime that hurts many people. The drugs destroy families and communities, and the government is responible to stop it. So when in Rome...
Yeah, it's not like anybody else may have had access to her luggage or anything. I mean, it's an airline flight, the luggage is never handled or anything. [/sarcasm]
Yes, there are many people who are guilty who say they are innocent. That does not mean that someone who says she is innocent must therefore be guilty.
As another poster noted, this is the same nation that hands out slap on the wrist sentences to those with guilty knowledge of the Bali bombing, an event that ruined a lot more lives than 9 pounds of marijuana ever could.
When Indonesia gets 1/10th as tough on Muslim extremists as they do on alleged pot smugglers, then I'll start believing in the integrity of their criminal justice system.
I do think the best lesson from this is if you're an Aussie, never go to Bali. Who knows whether the stuff was planted, so why take the risk of someone planting something on you?
Marijuana is for losers bump ...
Well maybe Muslim countries just like to kill Christans. I would not go there if I was an Aussie smuggling drugs. The Government says that they have proven her guilty and the punishment is life not the usually firing line. Sounds like Christan Aussie should stay out of this area if they are planting drugs on them for the excuse to throw them in jail for life.
I don't agree with the punishment, but don't bring 9 pounds of drugs into someones community and then tell them you don't like their laws.
O.K. Mr. Gullible, didja read this:
unwittingly used as a courier by organized criminals trying to smuggle the drugs on a connecting flight from Brisbane to Sydney.
FWIW: Brisbane to Sydney is the opposite direction...quite a stretch of you to think she's innocent
If she is telling the truth a simple drug test would prove it. No drugs, especially marijuana, in her system then the planted drug story has more credence. So one must ask themselves why hasnt the defense attorney insisted on a drug test?
Clarence Darrow you're not:
Corby, 27, who was arrested last October
unless you think she was toke'n in her cell these past 7 months.
Bali is a small resort island that is part of the archipelago. Balinese are mostly hindus believe it or not, they are good people. Thing is, the island is part of Indonesia which is the most muslim populated country.
Had Bali stood by its own, as in a sovereign country even though it's a small island, I reckon balinese would enjoy a lot more prosperity without being controled by those numbskulls in Jakarta. I have been to Bali, it's a fav spot for us aussies. Random is an aussie expat living in the States :)
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