News World Bali Nine put forward for clemency

Bali Nine put forward for clemency

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The clemency bid of the two Bali Nine members on death row has received a boost with prison authorities recommending all nine for lesser sentences.

To mark Indonesia’s Independence Day, prisons can nominate well-behaved inmates for remissions.

The only member of the nine Australians convicted over the foiled 2005 heroin trafficking plot who was eligible was Renae Lawrence, as the others were sentenced to either life or death.

However, Kerobokan prison governor Farid Junaedi on Sunday told reporters he put all of the Bali Nine forward, including Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, who were sentenced to death.

“The suggestion was made before August 17,” he said.

“Those with the death sentence to be reduced to life in jail.

“Those with life in jail should become terms of punishment 15-20 years.”

The cases of Sukumaran and Chan are in the hands of Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY), who can grant them clemency.

The two were deemed the masterminds of the operation but have made great strides in rehabilitation, according to prison authorities.

However SBY, considered a great friend to Australia, leaves office in October.

Clemency for drug offenders, who are severely punished in Indonesia, won’t be a priority for his successor Joko Widodo.

Sukumaran says he is still passing the time productively in the art studio, also an outlet to help other inmates.

“It’s a hard wait,” he told reporters at Kerobokan on Sunday.

“It’s a very difficult thing to put into words.

“I just don’t want to be shot, really.”

As part of Independence Day celebrations at the prison, there was a rock bank, games and Balinese dancers.

Since their 2006 conviction, the nine have been split between jails.

Si Yi Chen, Michael Czugaj and Matthew Norman are also still in Kerobokan.

Martin Stephens and Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen have been moved to a jail in Malang, Java. Scott Rush is detained at Karangasem, also in Bali.

Lawrence is in Bangli, another jail in Bali, after her involvement in a plot to kill two prison guards at Kerobokan.

Authorities say her behaviour has improved but their recommendation to cut a further six months from her 20-year sentence has yet to be processed.


On death row

Andrew Chan, 30, Myuran Sukumaran, 33, (Kerobokan, Bali)

Serving Life

Martin Stephens, 38, Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, 30, (Malang, Java)

Michael Czugaj, 28, Matthew Norman, 28, Si Yi Chen, 29, (Kerobokan, Bali)

Scott Rush, 28, – reduced from death (Karangasem, Bali)

Serving 20 years

Renae Lawrence, 36 (Bangli, Bali)