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Banten court sentences Iranian drug gang to death

Agence-France Presse - October 29, 2023

Jakarta – A district court in Banten on Friday handed death sentences to eight Iranian drug traffickers found guilty of smuggling more than 300 kilograms of crystal meth into the country.

Indonesia has some of the world's toughest anti-drug laws but has held off conducting executions for several years.

A judge in Banten ordered that all eight men be executed by firing squad for the gang's role in smuggling 319 kilograms (703 pounds) of the illegal drug.

Uli Purnama addressed the defendants individually, ruling each one had been "convincingly proven guilty of committing intentionally a criminal act... as an intermediary in the transaction of class 1 narcotics".

He told each of them he was "therefore sentencing the defendant" to death.

The judge said all eight were found trying to smuggle the drugs through the Indian Ocean to Java, before being caught in February at a port in Banten.

The defendants have seven days to appeal the decision.

In 2019, a French drug trafficker briefly on death row saw his sentence reduced to a long prison term on appeal.

A year earlier, eight Taiwanese smugglers were sentenced to death after being caught with around a tonne of crystal meth.

Several foreign traffickers have been executed by firing squad, including Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in 2015 – a case that sparked diplomatic outrage and a call to abolish the death penalty.

The pair had been named the ringleaders of the "Bali Nine" heroin smuggling gang.

Source: https://www.thejakartapost.com/indonesia/2023/10/29/banten-court-sentences-iranian-drug-gang-to-death.htm