"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Indonesian court postpones Frenchman’s death row appeal to June 8

Serge Atlaoui and his Indonesian lawyer during a hearing on April 1, 2015.
An Indonesian court Wednesday once again postponed the hearing of an appeal by a Frenchman on death row, indicating the country's slow-moving justice system could delay his execution for some time yet.

Serge Atlaoui, 51, had been due to face the firing squad with seven other foreign drug convicts on April 29 but was removed from the list after authorities agreed to let an outstanding legal appeal run its course.

It was due to start at the Jakarta State Administrative Court on Wednesday, however judge Ujang Abdullah adjourned the case to next week after Atlaoui's expert failed to attend.

In the appeal, Atlaoui, a welder, is challenging President Joko Widodo's decision to reject his request for clemency, claiming the Indonesian leader did not properly consider his case.

A plea for presidential clemency is typically a death row convict's final chance to avoid the firing squad.

France stepped up pressure on Indonesia in recent weeks to abandon plans to put Atlaoui to death, with President Francois Hollande warning of "consequences" if the execution goes ahead.

Atlaoui was arrested in a 2005 raid on a secret drug laboratory outside Jakarta. He has maintained his innocence, claiming that he was installing machinery in what he thought was an acrylics plant.

However, police say he was a "chemist" in the drugs factory.

Widodo has insisted he will not change course on the death penalty, as Indonesia faces an emergency due to rising narcotics use.

Source: Agence France-Presse, DPN, June 3, 2015

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