Britain has promised to fight to save a grandmother from the firing squad after she was sentenced to death for smuggling cocaine into Bali.
There were gasps in court as the verdict on 56-year-old Lindsay Sandiford was read out. Prosecutors on the Indonesian holiday island had asked for a 15-year jail term in return for her decision to cooperate with the police.
Sandiford hung her head low, turned pale and cried "no, no, no" at the sentence.
Originally from Redcar in Teesside, Sandiford was caught at Bali's international airport in May attempting to take in 10.6lb (4.8kg) of cocaine, with a street value of £1.6m (€1.9m), concealed in the lining of her suitcase.
Hugo Swire, Britain's Foreign Office minister, said "repeated representations" had been made to the Indonesian authorities while William Hague, the foreign secretary, had raised the case with his Indonesian counterpart.
Sandiford has two further avenues of appeal and an opportunity to apply for presidential clemency. At that point Britain could appeal for her life. A Foreign Office spokesman said: "We will leave no doubt that we are not happy."
Martin Horwood, MP for Cheltenham, where Sandiford lived most recently in Britain before moving to India, said the sentence was a shock. "The days of the death penalty ought to be past," he added. "This is not the way that a country that now values democracy and human rights should really be behaving."
Amnesty International described the sentence as "cruel".
Sandiford's lawyer said she would appeal, a process that can take several years. Until then she will be held Bali's Kerobokan Prison, one of the world's most notoriously hot, dangerous and dirty jails.
Executions in Indonesia are carried out by firing squad, usually at night in isolated and undisclosed locations. The last was in June 2008, when two Nigerian drug traffickers were shot. There are an estimated 140 people on death row in its jails, a third of them foreigners.
The panel of judges said it had decided on the maximum sentence for a number of reasons, including Sandiford's convoluted evidence.
"We found Lindsay Sandiford convincingly and legally guilty . . . and sentenced the defendant to death," Judge Amser Simanjuntak said.
"She also didn't care that the cocaine she smuggled into Bali would have a big impact on people. What the defendant has done could tarnish Bali's image as a tourism destination."
Indonesian police said Sandiford, who worked for several years in management at DTS Legal in Cheltenham, was at the centre of a drug-importing ring.
She argued that she was forced into transporting the cocaine in order to protect her two grown-up sons, whose safety was allegedly at stake.
After her arrest, Sandiford helped police to set up a sting operation which led to the arrest of three other Britons and an Indian man.
The others have received light sentences. Rachel Dougall was jailed for 12 months for failing to report Sandiford's crime and Paul Beales received four years for possessing 3.6gms of hashish.
A fourth Briton, Julian Ponder, is expected to learn his sentence at the end of this month after prosecutors recommended a seven-year jail term. (© Daily Telegraph, London)