No reprieve: British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford loses appeal against Bali death sentence

57-year-old's only hope now is to ask President for clemency

A British grandmother sentenced to death in Indonesia for drug trafficking must pin her hopes on a plea for clemency direct to the country’s President after her final legal appeal against execution was rejected unanimously.

Lindsay Sandiford, 57, who was arrested last year with nearly 4kg of cocaine in her suitcase, faces a firing squad unless a reprieve is issued by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono – who has previously made clear his reluctance to show leniency to foreign nationals on death row.

Campaigners said Mrs Sandiford, originally from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, has almost run out of legal options after Indonesia’s Supreme Court today rejected her appeal against the death sentence handed down to her in January by a lower court on the resort island of Bali.

Supporters of the Briton’s case for clemency, who include the former Director of Public Prosecutions Lord Macdonald, have expressed bewilderment at the severity of the sentence imposed upon her in contrast to lesser punishments imposed on other Britons accused alongside her.

Lawyers for Mrs Sandiford have argued that she is a low-ranking drugs “mule” who has been exploited by senior members of the smuggling gang. Julian Ponder, 43, who was not tried for trafficking and sentenced to six years’ imprisonment for drug possession, is alleged to have been the organiser of the shipment carried by the grandmother – a claim he has denied.

Zoe Bedford, of the human rights group Reprieve, said: “It is clear that Lindsay was merely a mule, exploited by those further up the chain who have avoided serious punishment.

“The decision [to dismiss her appeal] is deeply disappointing. Lindsay has repeatedly apologised to the Indonesian people for her actions, which she deeply regrets. She co-operated fully with the police and has never sought to avoid punishment, asking only for a sentence that was proportionate to her offence.”

After she flew into Bali from the Thai capital Bangkok with the cocaine, worth some £1.6m, concealed in her luggage, Mrs Sandiford agreed to assist the authorities, leading them to Mr Ponder and others. As a result of her co-operation, prosecutors asked that she receive a 15-year prison term but the judge at her trial instead sentenced her to death by firing squad.

Under Indonesian law Mrs Sandiford could still seek a judicial review but only if she is able to present new evidence or allege a miscarriage of justice. The sole additional avenue is a presidential pardon, which the grandmother now has 12 months to seek.

Although no foreign national has been executed in Indonesia since 2008, President Yudhoyono, a retired general, has publicly declared his reluctance to intervene in the justice system despite receiving requests from “many countries” for clemency. Speaking in 2011, he said: “I turn down almost all requests of pardon and acquittal from the death sentence. It is for the sake of justice.”

In a statement, the Foreign Office said: “We will consider how to support any application for judicial review or clemency Lindsay Sandiford chooses to make.”

Britons abroad: The players

Rachel Dougall, 39

Ponder’s partner, Dougall, was arrested following a search of their luxury Balinese villa by police. She was imprisoned for 12 months for failing to report a crime.

Julian Ponder, 43

The Londoner was originally charged with drug trafficking along with Mrs Sandiford. Ponder was cleared of smuggling and given six years for possession of 48 grams of cocaine.

Paul Beales, 41

Alleged to have been one of two men who provided Sandiford with the drugs in Bangkok, Beales did not face a trafficking charge and is serving four years for possession of cannabis.

News
Susan Sarandon described David Bowie as
peopleSusan Sarandon reveals more on her David Bowie romance
Sport
sportDidier Drogba returns to Chelsea on one-year deal
Arts and Entertainment
The Secret Cinema performance of Back to the Future has been cancelled again
film
News
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
Sport
Louis van Gaal would have been impressed with Darren Fletcher’s performance against LA Galaxy during Manchester United’s 7-0 victory
football
Voices
The new dawn heralded by George Osborne has yet to rise
voicesJames Moore: As the Tories rub their hands together, the average voter will be asking why they're not getting a piece of the action
Sport
Dejan Lovren celebrates scoring for Southampton although the goal was later credited to Adam Lallana
sport
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Arts and Entertainment
Jo Brand says she's mellowed a lot
tvJo Brand says shows encourage people to laugh at the vulnerable
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
Sport
Rhys Williams
commonwealth games
News
Isis fighters travel in a vehicle as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Southern charm: Nicolas Cage and Tye Sheridan in ‘Joe’
filmReview: Actor delivers astonishing performance in low budget drama
Life and Style
fashionLatex dresses hit the catwalk to raise awareness for HIV and Aids
Travel
travel
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior Risk Manager - Banking - London - £650

£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...

Commercial Litigation Associate

Highly Attractive Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - COMMERCIAL LITIGATION - GLOBAL...

Systems Manager - Dynamics AX

£65000 - £75000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: The client is a...

Service Delivery Manager (Software Development, Testing)

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A well-established software house ba...

Day In a Page

Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears