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Indonesian court sentences Frenchman to death for drug smuggling

Arsyad Ali, AFP | French national Felix Dorfin (pictured centre) is escorted prior to his appearance in court in Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara on the island of Lombok on April 29, 2019

An Indonesian court Monday sentenced Frenchman Felix Dorfin to death for drug smuggling, in a surprise verdict after prosecutors asked for a 20-year jail term.

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Dorfin, 35, was arrested in September carrying the suitcase filled with about three kilograms (6.6 pounds) including ecstasy and amphetamines at the airport in Lombok, a holiday island next to Bali where foreigners are routinely arrested on drugs charges.

Indonesia has some of the world's strictest drug laws -- including death by firing squad for some drug traffickers and it has executed foreigners in the past.

While prosecutors had not asked for the death penalty, Indonesian courts have been known to go beyond their demands.

"After finding Felix Dorfin legally and convincingly guilty of importing narcotics... (he) is sentenced to the death penalty," presiding judge Isnurul Syamsul Arif told the court.

He cited Dorfin's involvement in an international drug syndicate and the amount of drugs in his possession as aggravating factors.

"The defendant's actions could potentially do damage to the younger generation," Arif added.

Indonesia has not executed anyone since 2016, but a number of foreigners are still on death row including a cocaine-smuggling British grandmother and Serge Atlaoui, a Frenchman who has been on death row since 2007.

(AFP)

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