[Indonesia Report] Indonesian President grants clemency to drug-related convicts

Schapelle Corby receives clemency on Christmast 2008 (Photo: kompas.com)

Drugs convict, Schapelle Corby, an Australian, has been once again granted clemency by Indonesian Authority. Earlier, Indonesian President granted 5 years clemency to her 20 years prison term on May 15, 2012. This August, Indonesian authority granted 6 months remission to her sentence, making her eligible to apply for a parole. The remission was given on the occasion of the Indonesia Independence Day which was on July 17. It is customary for the President to grant clemency for prisoners in celebration of the national holiday, but it was quite rare to extend the clemency to drug convicts.

According to Kompas.com’s report, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono recently granted remissions for death sentence convicts.

Despite of the Supreme Court Justice’s decision on annulling the death sentence of the two drugs lords, President SBY granted clemency to Deni Setia Maharwan and Merika Pranola.

President SBY granted the clemency and changed the death sentence to life sentence to Deny dan Merika, according to Djoko Sarwoko, Supreme Court Spokesperson, told journalist on a press conference on Friday, October 12.

Djoko explained on the unclear information on whether Supreme Court Justice annulled the two convicts’ death sentence through judicial review or president clemency.

According to Djoko, Deny and Merika appealed on judicial review but was rejected by the Supreme Court Justice in 2003.

In April 2011, Deny appealed for clemency to the Supreme Court but was also turned down.

Several months after, President SBY decided to grant the clemency through presidential decree signed in January 25, 2012.

Indonesia has one of the severest sanctions for drugs abuse, even bringing death penalty. This clemency grant brought criticism from among the Indonesians on the consistency of President SBY on the law enforcement of drugs abuse cases.

Previously, Supreme Court Justice annulled the death sentence of the ecstasy factory owner in Surabaya, Indonesia and to Hillary K Chimezie, a Nigerian.

Indonesia is one of the countries in the world, which still imposing death penalty, despite of human rights activists’ effort to erase the enforcement of death penalty.

Meidyana Rayana Intern Reporter news@theasian.asia

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