Here is some news that actually matters for a change.
Napalm Death frontman Mark “Barney” Greenway has written a pair of appeal letters to Joko Widodo, who is the heavy metal-lovin’ president of Indonesia.
His missives are being written on behalf of several foreigners — a British woman, among them — who are sitting on death row in Indonesia, accused of narcotics running.
In 2013, 57-year-old Briton Lindsay Sandiford, a former legal secretary, was sentenced to death by firing squad. She was caught smuggling cocaine to Bali.
Sandiford, who has no lawyer representing her and further claims she can’t afford to pay for one, contends she had to carry the drugs on her after gang lords threatened the lives of her children
Widodo has claimed he would deny any appeal for those languishing on death row on drug convictions. Indonesia has stringent drug laws; five foreigners were put to death last month for crimes similar to Sandiford’s.
Greenway was approached by someone unspecified, and asked to intervene, by personally appealing to Widodo.
Here’s his most recent letter:
“I am writing to you again to appeal for mercy and restraint, this time regarding the case of Lindsay Sandiford, a prisoner from the UK who it would seem is facing the prospect of imminent execution on the grounds of cocaine trafficking.
“My request for a considered, humane perspective extends to all prison detainees, but particularly in the case of Lindsay Sandiford it would appear that she was under duress to transport drugs, with her family under threat if she did not comply.
“Speaking generally, there have been countless miscarriages of justice and excessive punishments throughout history, and when the designated penalty is death I would suggest that someone potentially faced with no option but to bow to such a threat deserves far greater hearing and protection from the gravest of penalties.
“Currently, Lindsay Sandiford has not seemingly been afforded the legal resources to present her case, so to deal with her case in the cruellest way would be to do so on a partial hearing of the facts at hand and not upon any form of justice as I understand the concept.
“For the second time, Mr Widodo, I would ask you to raise yourself above the threshold of all those in power that merely pretend to make changes for the better. To my mind, your election platform promises of moves toward a more egalitarian civic structure means protection at all levels – and capital punishment can only take things backwards in that respect.
“I ask you to please keep these promises at the forefront of your mind and urgently give your attention to Lindsay Sandiford’s plight.”
Not for nothing, but I think an additional letter of appeal from Randy Blythe might go a long way.
Just a thought.
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