Court upholds Briton death sentence

Herald Series: Lindsay Sandiford was sentenced to death for drug trafficking (Reprieve/PA) Lindsay Sandiford was sentenced to death for drug trafficking (Reprieve/PA)

An Indonesian court has upheld the death sentence against a British woman convicted of smuggling £1.6 million worth of cocaine in to the resort island of Bali.

A spokesman for Bali High Court announced on Monday that the court had rejected an appeal by 56-year-old Lindsay June Sandiford, from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.

She was convicted by a district court in January and sentenced to face a firing squad.

The court spokesman said the verdict was decided last week and Sandiford has 14 days to appeal to the national Supreme Court.

Sandiford, originally from Redcar, Teesside, was arrested in May when 8.4lb (3.8kg) of cocaine were discovered in her luggage at Bali's airport.

Four other defendants - three Britons and an Indian national - were sentenced to jail terms ranging from one to six years.

During her trial, Sandiford said she was forced to carry the drugs by a gang which threatened to hurt her children.

Prosecutors had sought a sentence of 15 years in prison, but the court surprised many by issuing the death penalty.

The British Embassy in Jakarta did not immediately respond to a written request for comment today. The UK Foreign Office in London has said it strongly opposes Sandiford's death sentence.

Indonesia has very strict anti-drug laws and most of the more than 40 foreigners on its death row were convicted of drug charges.

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