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Friday 1 August 2014

Briton death sentence appeal filed

Published 11/02/2013|09:51

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Lindsay Sandiford has been sentenced to death in Indonesia for drug trafficking (Reprieve/PA)

An Indonesian lawyer representing a convicted British grandmother has formally appealed against the death sentence she received for smuggling cocaine worth 2.5 million US dollars (£1.58 million) into the resort island of Bali in a suitcase.

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In an appeal filed to the higher court, lawyer Fadillah Agus said Lindsay Sandiford provided information that led to other convictions. However, that help was not considered by the court.

Agus said Sandiford, 56, acknowledged she committed the crime, but felt the sentence was too harsh.

London's High Court last month dismissed a case Sandiford filed against the British Government, saying it did not act unlawfully when it refused to fund her appeal.

Indonesia has very strict anti-drug laws and most of the more than 40 foreigners on its death row were convicted of drug charges.

Sandiford was arrested in May when customs officers at Bali's airport discovered 3.8 kilograms (8.4 pounds) of cocaine in the lining of her luggage.

She was convicted and sentenced to death by firing squad even though prosecutors sought just 15 years in jail. Four others suspects - three Britons and an Indian citizen - were arrested in connection with the case. All have received jail terms ranging from one to six years.

During the trial, Sandiford said she was forced to transport the drugs by a gang that was threatening to hurt her children.

"However, her role as a justice collaborator was not taken into account by the district court," Agus said. "Rather, she was sentenced to death while those masterminds and actual owners of the cocaine received lighter sentences."

Indonesia, which has very strict anti-drug laws, has not killed anyone since 2008, when 10 people were put to death, leaving 113 prisoners remaining on death row. But officials have said several executions are expected this year.

Press Association

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