An apology from Schapelle Corby’s family has been well received by Indonesian authorities assessing whether to march the Australian drug smuggler back to jail.
Mercedes Corby fronted the cameras on Thursday to apologise for her interview with the Seven Network, which could cut short her sister’s parole if it is deemed too controversial.
Her statement came after the family pleaded for the media to back off, with the intrusion blamed for Corby’s attempt at self-harm earlier this week.
An Australian photographer faces being deported from Bali after being arrested outside the Kuta home where Corby is now staying.
Nathan Richter was taken into custody on Wednesday night and remains detained pending investigation, Bali immigration officer Muhammad Rija Yulham says.
Mercedes did not answer questions after giving her statement.
“From the bottom of my heart I am very sorry to the people of Indonesia if my interview on Australian TV caused unease,” she said.
“I apologise if my words were disrespectful to Indonesia.
“I did not intend any disrespect.
“Our family are happy and grateful that Schapelle is free on parole. We thank the Indonesian government.”
Bali parole boss Sunar Agus welcomed the apology.
“This shows good intention from them,” he said.
“I see it that way and hopefully, this will bring better progress.”
In the Seven Network interview, Mercedes said the marijuana found in her younger sister’s surfing gear in 2004 could have been from Indonesia.
The family was repeatedly warned not to participate in the program if it was likely to cause community unease and breach Corby’s parole.
Pressure is growing on authorities, who are still preparing a report for the minister, to recommend Corby return to jail.
In an opinion piece for the newspaper Media Indonesia on Thursday, Agust Riewanto of Surakarta’s Sebelas Maret University argued the TV program treated Corby like a celebrity and mocked the law.
“Corby should be thankful to the government which has treated her as a special convict because of Indonesia and Australia’s tense and unhealthy relationship,” he wrote.
“There’s no other way for the government right now than to review the political gift of Corby’s parole and if it’s necessary, to revoke it.”
The apology was the second time this week the family has backpedalled.
Mercedes’ husband Wayan on Wednesday stopped denying the revelation that Corby twice had to be stopped from cutting herself with a knife during a meeting with a parole officer on Monday night.
Wayan now says the incident was caused by severe stress and that his sister-in-law is heavily medicated and needs privacy from the media.
Richter, an ex-News Corp Australia photographer, has been in trouble before.
In 2008, he was escorted from the plane that was taking Dr Jayant Patel from Los Angeles to Brisbane for his medical misconduct trial, after refusing to turn off his laptop and phone.
* Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467 or follow @LifelineAust @OntheLineAus @kidshelp @beyondblue @headspace_aus @ReachOut_AUS on Twitter.