Indonesian Supreme Court Denies Bali Bomber Appeals
25 September 2007
Indonesia's highest court has rejected final appeals from two people convicted for a terrorist attack in Bali in October 2002 that killed more than 200 people, mostly foreign tourists. The court's decision means three terrorists will likely face the firing squad. As Chad Bouchard reports from Jakarta, the news has brought some relief to survivors and victims' families.
Three men are expected to face the firing squad for carrying out the deadly attack on October 12, 2002. One of them, Amrozi Nurhasyim, previously lost his appeal.
The court announced Tuesday that two separate panels have rejected appeals for Imam Samudra, and Ali Ghufron, also known as Mukhlas, saying their lawyers failed to produce new evidence.
Lawyers for all three men have stated the convicted will not seek a presidential pardon.
The growing likelihood of execution of the three men has cheered victims of the attacks.
Peter Hughes was severely injured in one of the blasts, and spent a month in a coma. He remembers testifying at the bombing trials eight months after the incident.
"Sitting in the courtroom there with the five judges and one of the bombers, Amrozi, and pretty much putting out my point across, the fact that for one, you didn't kill me. And the other was that due process is going to happen and hopefully by what I'm saying today was going to make sure that they need justice and justice needs to be had," said Hughes.
Plans to execute the three militants were put off last year. Lawyers claimed their clients had been unfairly tried under anti-terrorism laws introduced after the bombings.
Hughes says he feared that the bombers would be set free, citing allegations of graft within Indonesia's courts. He says the Supreme Court's decision to deny their appeals restores some of his faith in Indonesia's legal system.
"In some way I sort of know now that Indonesia's government has sort of put their foot down and they're about to do something which is a good thing," he said. "I'm not the aggressive type of person that wants to be angry. I think that's what these criminals want you to be. They want you to be angry and upset the rest of your life so you can die an angry person. But these guys haven't got to me yet."
No date for the executions has been set.
The three men have admitted to carrying out the attacks in Bali, saying that they wanted to punish the United States and its allies for alleged atrocities in Afghanistan.
The Bali bombings and other attacks in Indonesia over the last few years have been linked to a Southeast Asian terror network, Jemaah Islamiah.
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