[Deathpenalty]death penalty news----worldwide
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Sun Apr 3 19:18:48 CDT 2005
PM would oppose Corby's execution
The Federal Government will "go into overdrive" to stop accused Gold Coast
drug smuggler Schapelle Corby being executed should an Indonesian court
find her guilty and impose the death penalty.
Justice Minister Chris Ellison yesterday said everything possible would be
done to keep Corby alive, including personal representations by Prime
Minister John Howard.
"I am not going to pre-empt any outcomes, but I can tell you what the
Government's policy is . . . relating to the death penalty and that is we
go into overdrive in making representations to avoid that being carried
out," he told the Ten Network.
"Recently the Prime Minister John Howard made personal representations to
Singapore in relation to the death sentence of an Australian national in
Corby, 27, is on trial for allegedly importing 4.1kg of marijuana into
Indonesia in an unlocked bodyboard bag last October.
She faces the death penalty or life in jail if found guilty.
Mr Ellison said negotiations with Indonesia were under way to establish a
transfer of prisoner agreement, which would allow Corby - if convicted -
to serve her sentence in Australia.
"I must say that the Indonesian authorities have been very co-operative in
relation to this matter," he said.
Mr Ellison also rejected the suggestion a guilty verdict would harm
relations between the two countries.
"In Schapelle Corby's case, she has been represented, she has had the
opportunity to bring in evidence (and) the court adjourned the hearing to
enable fresh evidence to be brought before it," he said.
"I think the Indonesian authorities have co-operated with our requests and
I don't think a finding of guilt will affect our relationship with
The comments came as Indonesian President Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and
his wife arrived in Australia last night for a four-day visit to Canberra
Mr Ellison said the Australian Federal Police, in co-operation with the
Queensland Police Service, were continuing to investigate allegations
aired at Corby's Bali trial last week.
John Ford, a Victorian prisoner, told the court Corby was the victim of a
domestic drug trafficking run.
He claimed the marijuana found in Corby's body board bag was owned by
Melbourne man Ronnie Vigenser.
But in a paid interview with the Nine Network, Mr Vigenser denied it was
Mr Ellison said the public airing of aspects of the case outside court was
"I think it is best left to the Australian Federal Police to carry out
this investigation rather than some public parade of what people say and
who says what," he said.
"Really, it is a matter for the Australian Federal Police, they are the
authority to deal with this."
Prosecutors will this week submit what they believe is an appropriate
sentence for Corby.
(source: The Courier-Mail)
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