News National Drug mule Renae Lawrence begs PM to plead for remaining Bali 9 heroin smugglers
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Drug mule Renae Lawrence begs PM to plead for remaining Bali 9 heroin smugglers

Renae Lawrence
Set free in 2017, Renae Lawrence know wants her fellow heroin smugglers' sentences reduced. Photo: Getty
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Convicted drug trafficker Renae Lawrence has pleaded for the remaining five Bali Nine prisoners to have their sentences reduced, coinciding with an official visit to Australia by Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

Ms Lawrence, who was released in 2018, told reporters in Canberra on Sunday, that if their sentences could not be reduced, she was asking that a prisoner exchange with Australia be considered.

“These humane actions will in some small part bring our nations closer together,” she said in her first public comments since her release.

In April 2005, Ms Renae was caught with eight others trying to smuggle 8.3 kg of heroin out of Indonesia to Australia.

Ringleaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran were executed in 2015.
Si Yi Chen, Michael Czugaj, Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, Matthew Norman, Scott Rush, and Martin Stephens were sentenced to life imprisonment, and Ms Lawrence to an original 20-year sentence.

Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.
Chan and Sukumaran were executed in 2015. Photo: ABC

Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen died of cancer in an Indonesian hospital in 2018.

She concedes it would be very hard for President Widodo to meet her demands, given many Indonesians are against clemency.

But she said the president can give “them a second chance, like the same I got”.

“It is a big ask but I think its time we sort of helped them,” she said.
She said it was like a death sentence for the remaining five.

“We all did something stupid, we all regret it, but everybody deserves a second chance,” she said,

“If this doesn’t happen, they have got no hope, they’ll lose hope and the end will be devastating.”

She said if she could meet Mr Widodo during his visit she would say “sorry”.

She thinks Prime Minister Scott Morrison should push to get something done and believes there is a good opportunity to have talks about it.

Mr Widodo landed in Canberra on Saturday night ahead of the signing of a free-trade agreement with Australia on Monday, when he will also address parliament.

-AAP