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MARC AMBINDER
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PAUL BEDARD
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DAVID BRODER

DAVID BROOKS
ELEANOR CLIFT
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RICHARD COHEN
JOE CONASON
DAVID CORN
CRAIG CRAWFORD
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DE BORCHGRAVE
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PEREZ HILTON
CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS
AL KAMEN



MARC AMBINDER
JONATHAN ALTER

PAUL BEDARD
GLORIA BORGER

DAVID BRODER

DAVID BROOKS
ELEANOR CLIFT
MARIE COCCO
RICHARD COHEN
JOE CONASON
DAVID CORN
CRAIG CRAWFORD
STANLEY CROUCH
DE BORCHGRAVE
MAUREEN DOWD
KEVIN DRUM
SUSAN ESTRICH
HOWARD FINEMAN
GEORGIE GEYER
ELLEN GOODMAN
MARK HALPERIN
PAUL KRUGMAN 
BILL PRESS
CARL HIAASEN
NAT HENTOFF
PEREZ HILTON
CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS
AL KAMEN

                                                               
                                               
         Police arrest 8 in Sydney airport for drug smuggling
"...But a Fairfax-7.30 investigation has discovered that the drugs found in his apartment were allegedly smuggled through the airport with the help of members of a suspected corrupt cell of Customs officials. The alleged members of the cell know the drug detection system back to front and know how to defeat it as well...."

"....John Patrick Ford, a prisoner at Port Phillip Prison who was awaiting trial and was subsequently convicted on unrelated charges, was flown to Indonesia to give evidence in Corby's defence. Ford testified that he overheard a conversation in prison between two men and alleged that one of the men planted the marijuana in Corby's body board bag in Brisbane with the intention of having another person remove it in Sydney. He stated that the drugs were owned by Ron Vigenser, who had been a prisoner at the same jail as Ford.[13] He stated that a mix-up resulted in the marijuana not being removed and subsequently being transported to Indonesia, all without Corby's knowledge. He refused to name the man who he claimed planted the drugs. The prosecution pointed out that his evidence was entirely hearsay and that he was facing trial for several serious offences in Australia. In the Australian media, Vigenser strongly denied any connection with the drugs and reportedly gave a statement to the Australian Federal Police. Schapelle Leigh Corby (born 10 July 1977) is an Australian woman convicted of drug smuggling who is imprisoned in Indonesia. Corby is serving a 20-year sentence (from which she has received 27 and a half months' remission) for the importation of 4.2 kg (9.3 lb) of cannabis into Bali, Indonesia. She was convicted and sentenced in Bali on 27 May 2005 by the Denpasar (Indonesia) District Court and currently serves her sentence in Kerobokan Prison, Bali. On appeal, her conviction and sentence were confirmed with finality by the Indonesian Supreme Court. In March 2010 Corby petitioned the President of Indonesia for clemency on the grounds of mental illness, and in May 2012 he granted a five-year sentence reduction...."


2012/12/21 | SAPA-AP

http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3658867.htm

Corrupt Customs officers exposed at Sydney Airport

Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Broadcast: 20/12/2012

Reporter: Nick McKenzie

Eight people, including two customs officers and one quarantine official, have been arrested over their involvement in smuggling drugs through Sydney airport

Transcript

CHRIS UHLMANN, PRESENTER: A root-and-branch overhaul of Customs - that's the Government pledge after police revealed the latest arrests in a two-year investigation into drug importation. In all, eight people have been arrested including two Customs officers and a quarantine official. The police operation centred on Sydney Airport where some of the people paid to secure our borders now stand accused of guiding through contraband. Shortly I'll discuss that with Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare.
But first, for the past six months Nick McKenzie has tracked this investigation for 7.30 and Fairfax media. It now shapes as one of the nation's most serious corruption scandals. Until tonight we've been holding Nick McKenzie's report for operational and legal reasons, but now he can bring you the inside story.

NICK MCKENZIE, REPORTER: Late one night in early March at this Woolooware apartment block in the south of Sydney, the NSW police drug squad staged a raid. The police burst into apartment number seven and found five kilograms of pseudoephedrine tablets, as well as steroids and 14 grams of cocaine. The raid was linked to one of the biggest law enforcement corruption scandals to hit Australia in decades. It's a scandal which, until now, has remained a secret.

The drugs found here at this apartment block behind me came via a most remarkable route. Not only did they pass through what should have been one of Australia's most secure sites, they did so with the help of suspected corrupt Federal Government officials. These officials were meant to be guarding the nation's borders. Instead, they've been involved in no less than alleged drug trafficking and bribery.The hub of this alleged corrupt activity is Australia's biggest airport. Sydney Airport plays host to thousands of passengers every day, screened by Customs officers whose job it is to prevent drugs and other prohibited goods entering Australia.

But far from being secure, it's suspected to be wide open to systemic corruption.

NEIL FERGUS, FORMER DIRECTOR OF SYDNEY OLYMPIC SECURITY : The capacity for a corrupt insider appropriately motivated to find ways through the system is actually quite strong and it probably always will be, so it is of paramount importance that corrupt insiders are detected and dealt with.

NICK MCKENZIE: Inside the apartment that was raided in March was Colombian-born Sydney man Diego Refojus. Refojus is a minor player in the underworld, a drug trafficker with prior convictions for aggravated burglary. But a Fairfax-7.30 investigation has discovered that the drugs found in his apartment were allegedly smuggled through the airport with the help of members of a suspected corrupt cell of Customs officials. The alleged members of the cell know the drug detection system back to front and know how to defeat it as well.

STEVE HUTCHINS, PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE ON BORDER SECURITY (2011): Customs officers would not have criminal records. They would have impeccable records.

NICK MCKENZIE: They'd be the perfect man to have on the inside.

STEVE HUTCHINS: They would be the perfect person.

NEIL FERGUS: If we have corrupt Customs officers, they do - they know how the system works. ... You're undermining everything that Customs stands for.

NICK MCKENZIE: Security concerns at Sydney Airport have persisted for years. In 2005, a leaked Customs report revealed organised crime had infiltrated Sydney Airport. The Federal Government ordered an inquiry.

Neil Fergus, former head of the Sydney Olympic security centre, helped Sir John Wheeler conduct his inquiry which revealed massive shortcomings and highly dysfunctional relationships between Customs, state and federal police and private airport security.

NEIL FERGUS: There were weaknesses with the CCTV technologies, the sharing of that and the use of that. There were issues in terms of intelligence sharing. There were a whole raft of issues.

NICK MCKENZIE: The Howard Government moved quickly to reform airport security and policing.

JOHN HOWARD, THEN PRIME MINISTER: I think we do have a high order of security at our airports, but it can be made better.

NICK MCKENZIE: But Fergus has told 7.30 the security reforms he called for were never fully realised.

NEIL FERGUS: I can't hand on heart, Nick, say that it has worked to the extent that we would have liked. I suspect it has been less effective than we hoped.

NICK MCKENZIE: In late 2007, in a report that was kept secret, a top-ranking Customs official urged a doubling in the numbers of anti-corruption staff and warned that the agency was terribly exposed without major reforms including drug and alcohol testing of Customs officers and mandatory reporting of fraud, corruption and serious misconduct. But those calls would go mostly unheeded for the next five years, leaving Customs without vital anti-corruption safeguards, a fact that shocks Neil Fergus.

NEIL FERGUS: Absolutely stunned. And to be honest, Nick, I didn't realise that that was the situation. So an agency of such critical importance to Australia's national security must have an appropriate vetting regime, must have an internal affairs or integrity section, must have alcohol and drug testing. It's almost defies belief if, as you tell me, those things are only being addressed now.

NICK MCKENZIE: In March 2009 the still unplugged gaps in airport security were dramatically illustrated with the fatal bashing of a Hell's Angels bikie associate at the Qantas domestic check-in terminal.

Airport security failed to stop the brawl and the CCTV cameras failed to capture vision that could be used effectively in court.

CLIVE SMALL, FORMER NSW POLICE ASST COMMISSIONER: Given the seriousness of the problem of drugs and other contraband being smuggled through the airports and given the publicly proclaimed high profile that was given to the security of airports, I would have thought the cameras would have worked.

NICK MCKENZIE: In 2009 the AFP's new airport policing squad zeroed in on Wayne Cleveland, a member of the infamous surf gang the Bra Boys. Police believed Cleveland's drug syndicate had for over a decade been using corrupt plane cleaners and caterers to smuggle cocaine, including this stash found by authorities in 2007.

???: Inside we have blocks of a white, hard substance in a vacuum-sealed package.

NICK MCKENZIE: In August 2009 Cleveland was filmed meeting one of his corrupt airline catering and cleaning contacts to organise another drug importation.

Cleveland was busted and later convicted along with two corrupt airline cleaners who both had been granted Federal Government aviation security identity cards even though they had prior criminal convictions.

Last year Steve Hutchins led a federal parliamentary committee that toured major airports examining gaps in border security.

STEVE HUTCHINS: But if you work here, you know exactly where the black spots are. You know where to get - smuggle gear in and where to get it out as well.

NICK MCKENZIE: Law enforcement officials told Hutchins privately that dozens or even hundreds of airport and waterfront staff had links to organised crime.

STEVE HUTCHINS: For some time, particularly the Australian Crime Commission, the Australian Federal Police, have been highlighting the amount of infiltration in some areas of the port and the airport. They suspect it's about three per cent of people who work in or about those areas that may be involved in serious and organised crime.

NICK MCKENZIE: Hutchins was warned privately by police of the challenges they faced, including a rise in cocaine smuggling through Australian airports, so his committee recommended new and sweeping overhauls of airport security.

STEVE HUTCHINS: So when Qantas introduced a direct flight to Buenos Aires, police said definitely that that would increase the amount of cocaine coming into the country or the opportunity for it to come into the country and inevitably it has.

NICK MCKENZIE: Fairfax and 7.30 can reveal that over the last two years figures in the underworld began to talk of some very special inside help at Sydney Airport. One of those with friends in the airport was underworld figure Alex Taouil.

In his book Blood Money, former NSW Police assistant commissioner Clive Small documented the rise in the underworld of Alex Taouil, seen here in this photo with Melbourne underworld boss Mick Gatto.

CLIVE SMALL: He's certainly moved much closer to the top in the past decade to the extent if he's associating with the likes of Gatto and a number of other people he's been - he is certainly towards the top and has got a wide network of associations.

NICK MCKENZIE: Alex Taouil's alleged contact inside Customs, Adrian Lamella, has an interesting history for a man whose job involves detecting drug traffickers. Publicly available records show that in 2008 the NSW police allege they found Lamella and two other men in a car with five small bags of cocaine, some of which Lamella later admitted to using. Two years after that, Lamella was involved in a property deal involving a unit in this apartment block with a man called Joseph Harb who'd later be arrested for drug trafficking.

Joseph Harb and Alex Taouil are not Lamella's only alleged questionable associates; nor is Lamella the only Customs officer with suspected links to the criminal underworld. According to intelligence obtained by Fairfax and 7.30, several policing and anti-corruption agencies suspect that Lamella is part of an allegedly corrupt cell of Customs officers working at Sydney Airport.

STEVE HUTCHINS: Customs is a problem. It would be a problem because a number of the areas that were recommended in the report weren't proceeded with by the Commonwealth. Now one of the areas of course is the role of the trusted insider.

NICK MCKENZIE: Well-placed sources say this cell of Customs officers has allegedly helped smuggle suitcases in backpacks filled with drugs past screening points, an activity suspected to have occurred every few months for several years. It's understood that around 12 months ago the cameras at Sydney Airport were secretly turned on the suspected Customs officers by Australia's secretive and powerful anti-corruption agency, the Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity. Soon, Customs officers' phone conversations were being tapped.

It was these tapped phone calls that led the NSW police drug squad to Diego Refojus' Woolooware apartment in March and the seizure of five kilograms of pseudoephedrine. Refojus is linked to two members of the allegedly corrupt Customs cell who are believed to have been at his apartment in the hours before the drug squad burst through.

Incredibly, up to 15 Customs staff at Sydney Airport are believed to have engaged in either serious misconduct or corruption. From that group, a core cell of up to 10 have been involved in drug trafficking and bribery.

Until this week, only one Customs officer had been arrested and accused in court of drug trafficking, arrested with him in August was Joseph Harb who was accused of smuggling drugs through Sydney Airport. This week, Adrian Lamella became the second Customs officer arrested and remanded into custody to face serious corruption charges.

Also arrested was his ex-girlfriend, a quarantine inspection official accused of leaking information to him.

Several other Customs staff remain under investigation, but are still working at Sydney Airport or other locations. Incredibly, it's only now that Customs are starting to implement common anti-corruption measures such as drug testing and the mandatory reporting of corruption. Unsurprisingly, the scandal is sparking calls for a full inquiry.

STEVE HUTCHINS: Look, I would call for a Royal Commission. We're not talking about small goods being knocked off anymore. We're talking about the importation of drugs.

NICK MCKENZIE: There's been a litany of reports, yet in 2012 we're still encountering very serious organised crime problems. Is it time to say, "Enough reports. Let's have something like a proper judicial inquiry, a Royal Commission?"

NEIL FERGUS: Look, I take the point that maybe there have been too many reports and not enough action taken, so, yeah, a commission of inquiry with judicial powers: it might be appropriate.

CHRIS UHLMANN: Nick McKenzie reporting.

 

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470

Fears over Sydney Airport drug import ring

 

THE discovery of a sophisticated drug smuggling racket allegedly involving Sydney Airport Customs officers has prompted the establishment of a reform board to ensure the service is clean.

Two Customs officers, one officer from the quarantine service and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation involving the AFP, Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI).

The operation, codenamed Marca, started nearly two years ago but one of the accused Customs officers began work as early as 2006.

Authorities will also review the travel patterns of two alleged drug mules prior to the start of operation Marca.

One of the young women, a professional dancer, is associated with businessman Jim Byrnes who on Thursday offered $20,000 surety when she applied for bail in a Sydney court.

Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare said more arrests were possible and he had a message for the estimated 5000 Customs officers working on Thursday.

"You can expect more stings, you can expect more arrests and you can expect more reform," he told reporters in Sydney.

"If you're corrupt we'll hunt you down and lock you up."

Around January, Customs identified what it believed was potential evidence of corruption at Sydney Airport and referred its suspicions to the ACLEI.

Customs acting chief Michael Pezzullo said he was disappointed but not surprised by the corruption revelations.

"I'm not so naive as to think that criminal elements will not attempt to penetrate this service, its systems and its staff," he told reporters.

Mr Clare announced the federal government would be establishing a Customs Reform Board which would provide him with advice and recommendations on how to bolster integrity in the agency.

The board members will be "Australia's best corruption hunter", former royal commission head Justice James Wood, former NSW police commissioner Ken Moroney and former TNT CEO David Mortimer.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) Commissioner Tony Negus said the investigation may result in more arrests and there were fears more imports may have entered the country before it began.

"What these people have done is let everyone down in that process by allegedly bringing people past those barriers and past that process without any individual scrutiny," Mr Negus said.

"They're trusted to make judgments about passengers and they really act in those areas as the gatekeeper."

The Customs officers allegedly arranged for the two women to travel overseas and bring 10kg quantities of the precursor drug pseudoephedrine - used to manufacture methamphetamine - back from Thailand and another undisclosed location.

They would meet their accomplices at the plane, escort them through the Customs area of the airport and then into the arrivals hall where they were free to continue on their way with the drugs.

Mr Negus said he wasn't surprised by media reports linking the operation to bikies and other organised crime groups.

This week, charges were laid against four of the co-accused relating to two alleged shipments which entered Australia via Sydney Airport in 2009 and 2010.

Four others were charged in August and October and all eight remain before the courts.

Independent Senator Nick Xenophon has requested Mr Clare release previous reports from former Customs officer Allan Kessing who was convicted in 2007 of leaking the documents to the media.

Acting Greens leader Adam Bandt said the new board was "a nice idea" but it was time for a national anti-corruption body.

The Community and Public Sector Union, which includes Customs workers, said it was disgusted and shocked at the allegations and would co-operate fully with the new board.


NICK MCKENZIE, REPORTER: Late one night in early March at this Woolooware apartment block in the south of Sydney, the NSW police drug squad staged a raid. The police burst into apartment number seven and found five kilograms of pseudoephedrine tablets, as well as steroids and 14 grams of cocaine. The raid was linked to one of the biggest law enforcement corruption scandals to hit Australia in decades. It's a scandal which, until now, has remained a secret.

The drugs found here at this apartment block behind me came via a most remarkable route. Not only did they pass through what should have been one of Australia's most secure sites, they did so with the help of suspected corrupt Federal Government officials. These officials were meant to be guarding the nation's borders. Instead, they've been involved in no less than alleged drug trafficking and bribery.

The hub of this alleged corrupt activity is Australia's biggest airport. Sydney Airport plays host to thousands of passengers every day, screened by Customs officers whose job it is to prevent drugs and other prohibited goods entering Australia.

But far from being secure, it's suspected to be wide open to systemic corruption.

NEIL FERGUS, FORMER DIRECTOR OF SYDNEY OLYMPIC SECURITY : The capacity for a corrupt insider appropriately motivated to find ways through the system is actually quite strong and it probably always will be, so it is of paramount importance that corrupt insiders are detected and dealt with.

NICK MCKENZIE: Inside the apartment that was raided in March was Colombian-born Sydney man Diego Refojus. Refojus is a minor player in the underworld, a drug trafficker with prior convictions for aggravated burglary. But a Fairfax-7.30 investigation has discovered that the drugs found in his apartment were allegedly smuggled through the airport with the help of members of a suspected corrupt cell of Customs officials. The alleged members of the cell know the drug detection system back to front and know how to defeat it as well.

STEVE HUTCHINS, PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE ON BORDER SECURITY (2011): Customs officers would not have criminal records. They would have impeccable records.

NICK MCKENZIE: They'd be the perfect man to have on the inside.

STEVE HUTCHINS: They would be the perfect person.

NEIL FERGUS: If we have corrupt Customs officers, they do - they know how the system works. ... You're undermining everything that Customs stands for.


                                                            INL News Background on the Arrest of Schapelle Leigh Corby 

Schapelle Leigh Corby
was arrested in Indonesia for smuggling marijuana and she said that she did not know they were there.

The INL News Group’s investigators always suspected that some customers baggage handler may have planted marijuana in her baggage at the Gold Coast Airport and what the  INL News Group’s investigators
 understand may well have happened.... is that they planted marijuana grown in Queensland in Schapelle Leigh Corby's baggage at the Gold Coast Airport.. then a corrupt baggage handler with the help of corrupt the takes them out at the Sydney airport for distribution in Sydney, but what may have happened is that someone forgot to take them out of her bag in Sydney and she was booked to fly from Gold Coast to Sydney and then on to Indonesia to visit her sister who as married to an Indonesian in Indonesia,

It never made sense to  INL News Group’s investigators that Schapelle Leigh Corby  was involved in exporting marijuana from Australia to Indonesia they grow heaps of marijuana in Indonesia and no need to take it there. They bring marijuana from Indonesia to Australia ....not the other way

Dan Lanskey  and ex Queensland Police Major Crime Squad detective said that there was a mulli-billion drugs industry thriving in the Gold Coast and all the way through Queensland with billions of dollars of marijuana grown in Queensland and especially in the hills and areas within  2- 10 hours of the Gold Coast and it all operates under the sanction of high up corrupt state and federal police authorities...

Dan Lanskey  said that is why he left the police after being in the Major Crime Squad....because his bosses said not to investigate certain people living in luxury houses on canals in the Gold Coast, when told his boss he was sure they were big drug dealers......
 the INL News Group offered all this information to the Corruption Commission in Queensland and they were not interest in hearing any of it....





Schapelle Corby argues with jail security as she didn't want to come to the hall for the Christmas remission announcement
at Kerobokan Prison in Bali, Indonesia, in 2011. Corby got 45 days remission from her sentence this Christmas. Picture: Lukman S. Bintoro



Schapelle Corby wipes her tears during the Christmas service at Kerobokan jail in Bali, on Friday night, December 24, 2010. Corby was expected to get 45 days special remission to mark Christmas. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro

Team Corby ... Schapelle with her Indonesian lawyers, Erwin Siregar, left, and the flamboyant Hotman Paris Hutapea.

Kerobokan jail staff try to persuade Australian Schapelle Corby to go back to her cell block
when she wanted to go out of the jail to see her sister Mercedes as she left after visiting time, on Thursday, June 23, 2011. Picture: Lukman
S Bintoro 



Schapelle's mother, Rosleigh Rose. She has said her daughter is uninterested in doing her prison time in Australia,
 saying Schapelle has no desire to be among the "big butch sheilas" in Australian women's jails



Schapelle's sister Mercedes Corby pictured in Denpasar in February 2007. Mercedes has been a staunch defender of her sister since her arrest in 2004.



Michael Corby, Schapelle's father, pictured here at a rally to mark her birthday in July 2005.
He was convicted for marijuana possession in the 1970s, but protested his innocence. "Some girl had it and they busted the whole joint and I had to go along for the ride," he said.


Schapelle's half-brother, James Kisina, was travelling with his sister when she was arrested.
 Last year he was arrested after a violent home invasion. later pleaded guilty to a series of offences, including producing and possessing marijuana. Picture: Channel 9

 

Jodi Power, once a friend of Schapelle and her sister Mercedes,
 has made a series of damaging and unsubstantiated claims about the Corby family to Channel 7.




http://www.straitstimes.com/breaking-news/world/story/police-arrest-8-sydney-airport-drug-smuggling-20121220

Police arrest 8 officials in Sydney airport for drug smuggling

SYDNEY (AP) - Police have arrested eight people including customs and quarantine officials accused of being part of a drug smuggling network operating at Australia's largest airport.

Australian Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus told reporters on Thursday that the network operating at Sydney International Airport has been under investigation for two years and more arrests are expected. Mr Negus says two customs officers and a quarantine official have been arrested in recent months as well as two female drug couriers. They have been charged with corruption and drug trafficking offenses. Mr Negus provided no details about another three people whom he says have been arrested.




http://www.sowetanlive.co.za/news/world/2012/12/21/police-arrest-8-in-sydney-airport-for-drug-smuggling

 

                                                             Police arrest 8 in Sydney airport for drug smuggling

21-Dec-2012 | Sapa-AP

Police have arrested eight people including customs and quarantine officials accused of being part of a drug smuggling network operating at Australia’s largest airport.

Australian Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus told reporters that the network operating at Sydney International Airport has been under investigation for two years and more arrests are expected.

Negus says two customs officers and a quarantine official have been arrested in recent months as well as two female drug couriers. They have been charged with corruption and drug trafficking offenses.

Negus provided no details about another three people whom he says have been arrested.

Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare declined to comment on Fairfax Media newspaper reports that up to 20 customs officers could be charged, saying the investigation is ongoing.

http://www.news.com.au/national/new-push-to-free-convicted-drug-smuggler-schapelle-corby/story-fndo4bst-1226442532955

NET Syndicated NSW News



  

New push to free convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby

CONVICTED drug smuggler Schapelle Corby could be released on parole in just two weeks, if a letter from the federal government supporting her bid is viewed favourably in Indonesia.

Corby's family has welcomed the letter from the Australian government as "great and exciting news". The government yesterday confirmed a letter supporting Corby's parole application was being prepared. If it is met favourably by Indonesian authorities, Corby could be eligible to apply for release in just two weeks. The Department of Foreign Affairs refused to say whether the letter would provide a guarantee that Corby will adhere to a strict set of conditions that would likely be imposed for her parole.

"It would be premature and inappropriate to discuss the details," a DFAT spokesman said. A Corby family spokeswoman said: "This is great and exciting news which we are thankful for." It is understood Corby, 35, would live with her sister Mercedes in Bali to serve her parole time.

Corby, who was caught in 2004 attempting to import 4.1kg of marijuana into Bali in her bodyboard bag, will be eligible to apply for parole if a recommendation that another six months be shaved from her sentence is approved. Her 20-year sentence was slashed by five years in May after she won an appeal for clemency from Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. A fresh recommendation for another six-month cut, if approved as expected, and combined with more than two years in remissions she has already received, will mean Corby would have served two-thirds of that sentence. Under Indonesian law, prisoners who have served two-thirds of their sentence are eligible to apply for parole. Gusti Ngurah Wiratna, the governor of Bali's notorious Kerobokan jail where Corby has been imprisoned for eight years, said a guarantee would be crucial to a successful parole application. "There are stages that must be gone through like hearing by correctional observer . . . guarantee from the family, and if she has undergone two-thirds of sentence or not, as well as a guarantee from the (Australian) embassy," Mr Wiratna said.

If she fails to win parole, the earliest Corby could walk free from Kerobokan jail is mid-2015, so long as she continues to win the maximum remissions each year.

The development comes amid resentment in some quarters in Indonesia after a clemency decision in May.

http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/auckland/news/nbint/1172133794-schapelle-corby-may-be-home-this-year

Schapelle Corby may be home this year

By: Newstalk ZB staff | International News | Wednesday May 23 2012

Schapelle Corby may be home as early as this year, but it's not clear exactly when she will be allowed to leave the notorious Kerobokan Prison.  The convicted drug smuggler has been granted clemency by the Indonesian president, with her jail sentence cut by five years.  It's thought her new release date will be September 2017, but it may be sooner than that because of good behaviour.  Her former lawyer Kerry Smith Douglas, who continues to campaign for Corby, told Newstalk ZB's Mike Hosking she's heard both August and September as possible release dates.  "I see light at the end of the tunnel but I won't be jumping out of my boots until I see the fat lady sing or when Schapelle comes back on home to Australian soil."  She believes Corby's had very little support from the Australian government.  "The president over there moves when he wants to move and I think it's the media that needs to be congratulated and her campaign committee and the people of Australia that have got behind her."  Australia correspondent Murray Olds understands she may be released in August.  "The other time that I heard was perhaps at the end of the year, even early 2013."  Australia's foreign Minister denies a deal was struck with Indonesia in return for the early release of Corby.  Authorities in Indonesia claim the decision to cut her sentence was prompted by the release of some young Indonesians accused of crewing asylum seeker boats.  Minister Bob Carr says they were going to be released regardless.  "We'd be releasing them because it is plainly indecent to have in Australian adult jails, kids from Indonesia who've been picked up on fishing boats being misused for people smuggling."  Corby was handed a 20 year jail sentence in 2004 for attempting to smuggle marijuana into Bali.

Photo: Schapelle Corby (Getty Images)

http://www.news.com.au/national-old/i-cant-wait-to-bring-her-home-schapelle-corbys-mum/story-e6frfkvr-1226365091744

Schapelle Corby won't be released until 2015 - official

  • By Paul Weston and Cindy Wockner
  • Gold Coast Bulletin, The Daily Telegraph
  • May 24, 2012
  • Increase Text Size
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    • Schapelle Corby will remain in prison until August 2015
    • That is, unless she is granted parole sooner
    • Corby has already served eight years

SCHAPELLE Corby will remain in prison until August 2015 unless she wins parole, a senior official at Kerobokan jail has confirmed.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed the possible release date to AAP last night, a day after it was revealed Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono had cut Corby's sentence to 15 years. He said a calculation completed yesterday had put the total remissions she had received so far at 23 months and 15 days, meaning her current sentence would expire in September 2017. But the official said Corby could also win further remissions of eight months a year, meaning her sentence would expire as early as August 2015. The remissions are awarded for Indonesian Independence Day, in August, and at Christmas. Corby has already served eight years. The official also confirmed that with the remissions she has already won taken into account, the 34-year-old would be eligible for parole later this year after having served two-thirds of her sentence. The 34-year-old former Gold Coast beauty therapist's mother, Rosleigh Rose, spoke of her joy at the daughter's sentence cut of five years. "It's a relief off our shoulders. Every day we wait," Mrs Rose said from her Logan home. "I think it hasn't sunk in yet. I can't believe it. It feels like I want to bawl, but I can't. We've been up before. We just have to keep calm." But it is possible Corby may not be able to come home and may be forced to serve her parole in Bali.

Family plans homecoming

It is likely there will be a renewed push to step up talks about a prisoner exchange deal between Australia and Indonesia. Official talks have been under way but have slowed over the detail. Mrs Rose said she was told of the letter of clemency, and hoped Corby might be able to come home this year. "I just keep thinking . . . July, August. I will be going over in July and I'm going to be bringing her home," Mrs Rose said. "How many times have I said that and it isn't correct or true. She will be staying at our home. She will need care. We will have to see how she's coping. "We will have to get proper medical advice. As long as she has family that loves her, that are around her and will be patient (she will be all right)."

Mrs Rose said Crobry had spoken many times of what she would like to do on her return to Queensland. "The sand between her toes on the Gold Coast, a lovely swim on the Gold Coast in the water at Tugun," Mrs Rose said. "It's like a cleansing. It will be like holy water to her. We've been waiting for eight years. Waiting for August will be nothing." Mrs Rose said the family would hold off on celebrations until Corby returned to her home. "We want to say thank you to her supporters. Stuff all you people who have said bad things about Schapelle," she said. "You've never known Schapelle or her family. All you've done is bag her and tell lies. "But the good have outnumbered the bad. And Schapelle has had a lot of good support. That's what has held us together and given us hope.".

Corby sisters to meet

Mercedes Corby plans to visit her sister in jail to discuss the news of her clemency with her. The elder Corby said from her Kuta home that the next step was considering how to apply for parole. "Our family is thankful to the Indonesian president," she told the Herald Sun"We now hope to confirm details for the possibility of parole. We hope there will be more positive news to come." She said she had not spoken to her sister since hearing about the sentence cut. But she thought it was likely Corby had already heard the news through the prison grapevine. Mercedes Corby lives in Bali and is married to an Indonesian, increasing the chances of her sister receiving parole - although it is rarely granted to foreigners. A source close to the family explained why they believed Corby might get parole in August.

No deal, says Carr

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Bob Carr has ejected reports Australia negotiated a deal with Indonesia for the early release of Corby. An Indonesian Government minister reportedly said Corby's 20-year sentence had been cut by five years as part of a deal which includes the release of Indonesians charged with people smuggling in Australia. But Senator Carr says no deal was struck. "The decision about minors in Australian jails was made because of the merits of the case," he said today. "That was raised with us and it was a very strong case, by Indonesian government people, most recently when the foreign minister of Indonesia met me in March." But the two issues were not linked, Senator Carr said. He was unable to confirm reports that Schapelle could be released by the end of this year because of good behaviour. "Any argument about parole would be something for Ms Corby's legal representatives to lodge," he said, adding an earlier release would depend on remissions. "The Australian Government has consistently supported Ms Corby's application for clemency on humanitarian grounds." Indonesia's Minister for the State Secretariat, Sudi Silalahi, said President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono cut Schapelle's prison term on humanitarian grounds. He described the decision as part of a reciprocal arrangement with Australia, which had already returned some young Indonesians accused of crewing asylum seeker boats. "It's not just a promise. Many have been followed through and they've already returned," he told ABC radio.

TIMELINE - Schapelle Corby:

July 10, 1977 
Schapelle Leigh Corby is born and grows up on the Gold Coast, Queensland, the third child of Michael Corby and Rosleigh Rose. She later enrols in a TAFE beauty therapy course, then works in the family fish and chip shop.

 

June 19, 1998
Corby marries a Japanese man, Kimi Tanaka, in the Japanese surfing town of Omaezaki, Shizuoka Prefecture.

 

2000
The couple separate and Corby returns to Australia.

 

2003
The couple’s divorce is finalised.

 

October 8, 2004
Corby, 27, arrives at Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar, Bali with three companions to celebrate her sister Mercedes' birthday. In Customs, Corby is found with 4.1kg of marijuana in her bodyboard bag. Corby claims she has no knowledge of the drugs.

 

January, 2005
Corby’s trial begins in Denpasar District Court. The prosecution bases its case on the Customs officials’ testimonies which say Corby claimed ownership of the bodyboard bag.

 

March 3, 2005
Corby’s defence begins. Her legal team says the drugs were planted in her bag, and say this is supported by the fact there were no precautions taken to hide the drugs.

 

May 27, 2005
Corby is found guilty and sentenced to 20 years in prison. Both the defence and prosecutors appeal to the High Court; the defence requests a retrial and the prosecution asks for life imprisonment. The verdict is televised live in Australia.

 

June 24, 2005
Corby sacks her legal team amid allegations they had requested $500,000 from the Australian Government to bribe the Balinese High court judges. Two days later she re-hires all but two of them.

 

July 5, 2005
The High Court rules the case be reopened by the District Court, allowing more witnesses to give evidence.

 

October 14, 2005
Corby’s sentence is reduced by five years.

 

January 19, 2006
The Indonesian Supreme Court overturns Corby's reduced jail time and reinstates her original 20-year sentence. The bodyboard bag and drugs are destroyed on the court's order, an indication the case is permanently closed. The judges reject the possibility of a final appeal unless extraordinary evidence is presented.

 

August 25, 2006
Corby reappears before the Denpasar District Court, where her lawyers submit a letter from the Australian Government stating CCTV cameras in Sydney Airport were working on October 8, 2005, and could prove the drugs were planted in her bag. The footage is never presented or found.

 

November, 2006
Corby releases the autobiography, My Story.

 

January 18, 2008
Michael Corby, Schapelle’s father, dies of cancer.

 

March 28, 2008
Indonesia’s Supreme Court rejects Corby’s final appeal, exhausting her legal options for release. Her final option is requesting clemency from Indonesia’s president.

 

June, 2008
Corby is hospitalised for depression.

 

May, 2009
Corby is again hospitalised for depression

 

2010
Corby launches a bid for clemency.

 

April 4, 2012
Indonesia's Justice and Human Rights Ministry recommends Corby’s jail sentence be slashed by 10 years - meaning she could be back in Australia within weeks - on humanitarian grounds. Corby is currently awaiting a decision by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who will have the final say on whether Corby is released. Corby, now 34, is said to be suffering from mental illness and struggling to cope with life inside Bali's Kerobokan jail. 

May 22, 2012

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono grants a five-year cut to Corby's sentence.

 

Schapelle Corby and her mum, Rosleigh Rose, in 2009. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro

 

Schapelle Corby with her sister, Mercedes, at Kerobokan Prison. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro

 

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/opinion/corbys-story-doesnt-justify-her-gaining-financial-glory/story-fn56aaiq-1226364337130

Corby story doesn't justify gaining financial glory

  • Susie O'Brien 
  • From:Herald Sun 
  • May 23, 2012
    • Convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby deserves to be sent home from Bali prison, but doesn’t deserve to benefit from selling her story.
    • Eight years in jail is long enough. It's time to bring Schapelle Corby home.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/opinion/everyones-talking-about-schapelle-corby-again/story-e6frfhqf-1226364071587

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby-may-be-home-by-august/story-e6frewmr-1226363725749

Schapelle Corby faces freedom as sentence cut

  • Mal Holland 
  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 22, 2012 
    • SCHAPELLE Corby's pleas for clemency have been approved by the Indonesian government.
    • The Indonesian government has confirmed the letter had been delivered to her at Kerobokan Jail in Bali.
    • Pictures: Corby through her years in prison
    • FOLLOW THE CORBY SAGA ON OUR IN-DEPTH PAGE
    • Reprieve: Schapelle too scared to hope 
    • Sources told thetelegraph.com.au that when the five-year cut is added to previous remissions she would then be eligible for parole.
    • However it would not mean Corby would be coming home to Australia.
    • Sources told thetelegraph.com.au Corby would have to stay in Bali on parole.
    • The sources said Corby would become the first foreign prisoner to be given parole because she has family in Bali.
    • You must have some connection, some family in Indonesia or you don't get parole.
    • Ms Corby's sister Mercedes and Mercedes' husband and their children live in Bali.
    • Corby has waited more than two years for her plea for clemency to be answered.
    • Her appeal was lodged with the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono in April 2010.
    • She asked for clemency because of her mental illness. Corby's mental and physical health has diminished significantly in recent years.
    • The plea sought to have Corby's 20-year jail sentence reduced, changed or quashed completely and was contained in hundreds of pages of documents addressed to the Indonesian President after she exhausted all other appeal avenues.
    • In Indonesia prisoners are only allowed a single plea for clemency.
    • The plea asks Mr Yudhoyono to give clemency to Corby by removing her sentence completely or slashing the number of years she must serve. But it did not make any suggestion of an alternative sentence.
  • The letter says the Indonesian government has approved the slashing of five years off her sentence.

·       TIMELINE - Schapelle Corby:

  •  
  • July 10, 1977 
    Schapelle Leigh Corby was born and grew up in the Gold Coast, Queensland, the third child of Michael Corby and Rosleigh Rose. She later enrolled in a TAFE beauty therapy course, then worked in the family fish and chip shop.
  •  
  • June 19, 1998
    Corby marries a Japanese man, Kimi Tanaka, in the Japanese surfing town of Omaezaki, Shizuoka Prefecture.
  •  
  • 2000
    The couple separate and Corby returns to Australia.
  •  
  • 2003
    The couple’s divorce is finalised.
  •  
  • October 8, 2004
    Corby, 27, arrives at Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar, Bali with three companions to celebrate her sister Mercedes birthday. In customs, Corby is found with 4.1 kilograms of marijuana in her bodyboard bag. Corby claims she has no knowledge of the drugs.
  •  
  • January, 2005
    Corby’s trial begins in Denpasar District Court. The prosecution base their case on the customs officials’ testimonies which say Corby claimed ownership of the bodyboard bag.
  •  
  • March 3, 2005
    Corby’s defence begins. Her legal team says the drugs were planted in her bag, and say this is supported by the fact there were no precautions taken to hide the drugs.
  •  
  • May 27, 2005
    Corby is found guilty and sentenced to 20 years in prison. Both the defence and prosecutors appeal to the High Court; the defence requesting a retrial and the prosecution life imprisonment. The verdict is televised live in Australia.
  •  
  • June 24, 2005
    Corby sacks her legal team after allegations they request $500,000 from the Australian Government to bribe the Balinese High court judges. Two days later she re-hires all but two of them.
  •  
  • July 5, 2005
    The High Court rules the case be reopened by the district court, allowing more witnesses to give evidence.
  •  
  • October 14, 2005
    Corby’s sentence is reduced by five years.
  •  
  • January 19, 2006
    Indonesian Supreme Court overturns her reduced jail time and reinstates her original 20-year sentence. The bodyboard bag and drugs are destroyed on courts orders, an indication the case is permanently closed. The judges reject a final appeal unless extraordinary evidence is presented.
  •  
  • August 25, 2006
    Corby reappears before the Denpasar District Court and her lawyers submit a letter from an Australian Government official stating the CCTV cameras in the Sydney International Airport were working October 8, 2005 and could prove the drugs were planted in her bag. Footage is never presented or found.
  •  
  • November, 2006
    Corby releases the autobiography, My Story.
  •  
  • January 18, 2008
    Michael Corby, Schapelle’s father, dies of cancer.
  •  
  • March 28, 2008
    Indonesia’s Supreme Court rejects Corby’s final appeal, exhausting her legal options for release. Her final option is requesting clemency from Indonesia’s president.
  •  
  • June, 2008
    Corby is hospitalised for depression.
  •  
  • May, 2009
    Corby is again hospitalised for depression
  •  
  • 2010
    Corby launches a bid for clemency.
  •  
  • April 4, 2012
    Indonesia's Justice and Human Rights Ministry recommends Corby’s jail sentence be slashed by 10 years - meaning she could be back in Australia within weeks - on humanitarian grounds. Corby is currently awaiting a decision by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who will have the final say on whether Corby is released. Corby, now 34, is said to be suffering from mental illness and struggling to cope with life inside Bali's Kerobokan jail.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby

Corby seeks government help

CONVICTED Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby is making a desperate appeal to the government to support her appeal for parole.

Schapelle given official release date

UPDATE: CONVICTED Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby will be released from Bali's Kerobokan Jail no later than September 20, 2017. 

Indonesia slams 'weak' Corby decision

POLITICIANS from all sides of the Indonesian spectrum are today condemning the decision to grant clemency to Schapelle Corby. 

20 comments on this story

Nervous wait for Corby parole news

EXCLUSIVE SCHAPELLE Corby's family hoping for "more positive news" as a prison official says she could remain in prison until 2015. 

Schapelle is too scared to hope

SCHAPELLE Corby was last night too scared to get her hopes up after hearing her jail sentence may be slashed by 10 years.

117 comments on this story

Bali birthday blues for Mercedes

MERCEDES Corby's birthday will forever be linked to the Bali drugs arrest of her sister Schapelle.

15 comments on this story

'Insane' Corby pleads for reprieve

DRUG smuggler Schapelle Corby has lodged a plea for clemency from the Indonesian President because of her mental illness, seeking to reduce her sentence.

33 comments on this story

Inside Corby's bloody hell on earth

KEROBOKAN Prison's walls touch paradise. But inside them it's a living hell; a seedy, bizarre world where the unimaginable and shocking become routine life.

5 comments on this story

Bring Schapelle home or she'll die

SCHAPELLE Corby's sister Mercedes said that a psychiatrist's report was "terrifying" for the family and she hoped it would spur the Government into helping.

43 comments on this story

Corbys fear for Schapelle's sanity

DRUG smuggler Schapelle Corby is so traumatised by her time in jail that she has lost all touch with reality and sometimes even thinks she can walk out any time. 

22 comments on this story

Schapelle confused with teddy, in pigtails

SCHAPELLE Corby has been seen lying on a floor on newspapers, in pigtails, clutching a teddy bear as she fights depression.

196 comments on this story

Schapelle Corby paranoid

SCHAPELLE Corby has become paranoid, unkempt and has been seen carrying a doll about her Bali prison cell as her mental condition rapidly deteriorates.

97 comments on this story

Schapelle Corby wants a prison parlour

SCHAPELLE Corby may be a step closer to fulfilling her ambition to become a beauty therapist - teaching prisoners the hairdressing trade.

Prosecutors seize Corby book cash

SCHAPELLE Corby, the convicted Australian drug criminal languishing in a Bali jail, will pocket more than $280,000 because of a bungle by prosecutors.

Mercedes Corby's no boob

MERCEDES Corby was paid very well for her raunchy December Ralph magazine bikini cover shoot. And the amount will stun you.

Black cloud lifts for Schapelle

ALMOST two months after being put in hospital with severe depression, Schapelle Corby was all smiles as she enjoyed a games day at her Bali jail.

New jail blow for Schappelle

CONVICTED drug smuggler Schapelle Corby celebrated her 31st birthday with pizza, but our Bali jailbird has been refused permission to move out of her cell.

Mercedes Corby's angry outburst

WILD scenes have surrounded Schapelle Corby's return to prison from hospital - sister Mercedes has become embroiled in an ugly yelling incident.

Corby dad a Bali 'drug runner'

THE father of Schapelle Corby was allegedly known to police as a key player in an international marijuana ring just weeks before her Bali arrest.

Corby goes to beauty salon

A WEEK ago, Schapelle Corby was frail and on the verge of a mental breakdown. But now, she's stepped out to visit a beauty salon in Bali.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby-seeks-help-from-the-australian-government/story-e6frewmr-1226370447785

Schapelle Corby seeks help from the Australian government

  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 29, 2012
    • DRUG smuggler Schapelle Corby is making a desperate appeal to the government to support her appeal for parole.
    • Her lawyer will meet Australian officials in Bali to beg them to back her parole bid and save her from a further three years in Bali's notorious Kerobokan jail.
    • Corby, 34, had her sentence cut by five years last week but will remain behind bars unless she wins parole.
    • Corby's lawyer Iskander Nawing said: "I hope the consulate will help me to protect Schapelle. We need the consulate's support."
  • Help me, please ... convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby / Pic:: Lukman S Bintoro Source: The Daily Telegraph

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/ben-panangian-the-man-whose-love-keeps-schapelle-corby-sane/story-e6frewmr-1226366162105

Schapelle Corby given her official release date - September 20, 2017

Cindy Wockner in Bali- The Daily Telegraph -May 25, 2012

    • SCHAPELLE Corby will be released from Bali's Kerobokan Jail no later than September 20, 2017.
    • More to follow as the story breaks ...

 

Political anger in Indonesia over Schapelle Corby 'leniency'..A SENIOR Indonesian Judge has called on Indonesia’s President to explain the reasons for granting Schapelle Corby’s clemency and described drug crime as worse than terrorism.

The call comes as it emerges that the President has spared the life of a Nepalese man on death row, granting him clemency on humanitarian grounds.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/anti-drug-lobbyists-threaten-legal-fight/story-e6freuy9-1226366158737

Anti-drug lobbyists threaten legal fight

  • Cindy Wockner 
  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 25, 2012 

A POWERFUL Indonesian anti-drugs group has threatened legal action against President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's clemency ruling for Schapelle Corby. Politicians from all sides of the spectrum in Jakarta have condemned the decision, branding it "weak". "I feel ashamed because it shows inconsistency. SBY once said that we will not lose the battle against narcotics. But now he has given a pardon to narcotics criminal," Henry Yosodiningrat of the anti-drug lobby group Granat said. "This can be a bad precedent. Drug prisoners will look at this as an entry point to ask for pardon to the President. If granted, then what will happen to Indonesia? Drug criminals running free." Former justice minister Yusril Ihza Mahendra was reported to have said it was the first time in history that an Indonesian president had granted clemency to a drug criminal. "Previous presidents have never done it, either to Indonesian prisoners or foreign prisoners," Mr Mahendra said. "I am wondering why the President is too weak in facing the request from Australia that he has easily given the pardon for narcotics crime that has a bad effect on our country." Nasir Djamil, vice-chairman of the justice and human rights parliamentary commission, said the Justice Ministry hoped the Corby decision would bring reciprocal lenient treatment for Indonesians jailed in Australia for people smuggling. "The problem is the Australian government haven't promised anything for Corby's clemency compensation. How can this be?" he said.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/minutes-flies-to-bali-to-score-an-interview-with-schapelle-corby/story-e6freuy9-1226366158541

60 Minutes flies to Bali to score an interview with Schapelle Corby

The Daily Telegraph 

May 25, 2012

VETERAN 60 Minutes reporter Liz Hayes has flown to Bali in the hope of snaring an exclusive interview with Schapelle Corby. A Nine Network spokesman last night confirmed the program was talking to Corby's Bali-based sister Mercedes about what comes after the clemency decision. He denied the program had already inked a deal with the Corby family. "Just not so ... no deal ... but like the Telegraph and just about everyone else, of course 60 Minutes would be interested in talking to her," he said.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/indonesia-slams-weak-schapelle-corby-decision/story-e6frewmr-1226365700907

Indonesia slams 'weak' Schapelle Corby decision

Cindy Wockner in Bali 

The Daily Telegraph May 24, 2012

POLITICIANS from all sides of the Indonesian spectrum are today condemning the Indonesian President's decision to grant clemency to Schapelle Corby.

As Corby began her third day in Kerobokan Jailsince learning that she had won her clemency bid, present and former Indonesian politicians in Jakarta have described the decision as regretful.

Pictures: Corby through her years in prison

Former Justice Minister Yusril Ihza Mahendra is reported to have said that this was the first time in history that an Indonesian President had granted clemency to a drug criminal.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby-from-a-dirty-cell-to-bali-paradise-but-still-miles-from-home/story-e6frewmr-1226363926337

Schapelle Corby - from a dirty cell to Bali paradise, but still miles from home

Cindy Wockner, Alison McMeekin and Malcolm Holland 

The Daily Telegraph  May 23, 2012

MERCEDES Corby plans to visit her sister in jail today to discuss the news of her clemency despite Foreign Minister Bob Carr rejecting doing a deal with Indonesia to secure the early release of convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby.

Schapelle Corby will remain in prison until August 2015 unless she wins parole, a senior official at Kerobokan jail has confirmed.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed the possible release date to AAP on Wednesday, a day after it was revealed Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono had cut Corby's sentence to 15 years.

He said a calculation completed on Wednesday morning had put the total remissions she had received so far at 23 months and 15 days, meaning her current sentence would expire in September 2017.

But the official said Corby could also win further remissions of eight months a year, meaning her sentence would expire as early as August 2015. The official also confirmed that with the remissions she has already won taken into account, the 34-year-old would be eligible for parole later this year after having served two-thirds of her sentence.

Mercedes said from her Kuta home that the next step was considering how to apply for parole.

"Our family is thankful to the Indonesian president. We now hope to confirm details for the possibility of parole.

"We hope there will be more positive news to come," she told thetelegraphcom.au.

She said she had not spoken to Schapelle since hearing about the decision to slash five years from her sister's 20 year sentence.

But she thought it likely her sister had probably already heard the news through the prison grapevine.

Mercedes plans to visit the jail later today and the next step will then be an application for parole, which could see Schapelle released from jail to the family custody.

Given then Mercedes lives in Bali and is married to an Indonesian, the chances of parole are increased, although parole is rarily ever granted to a foreigner.

Last week the Gillard Government announced that following a review three Indonesian nationals convicted of people smuggling – who claimed they were minors at the time of their interception – would be released from jail and returned home.

Reports are now circulating that Indonesian government ministers say Corby's 20-year sentence has been cut by five years as part of a deal to release the people smugglers.

But Senator Carr said no deal was struck.

While admitting the Indonesian Government raised the issue of the people smugglers at a high-level meeting in March, Mr Carr said the government's decision to release the Indonesians from prison was made independently of Corby's case.

"We're doing this with the minors because it's the right thing to do,'' Mr Carr said.

Mr Carr said it "could well be the case'' that the Indonesian government regarded the people smugglers and Corby's cases as linked.

But: "At no stage has the government sat down with our Indonesian counterparts and said, 'we'll release minors from our jails if you consider a clemency application by Ms Corby','' Mr Carr said.

"But if doing what we're doing for the right reasons on these minors has created a level of comfort in the government in Indonesia then that's fine by me. That's a good thing.

"But when it comes to the minors it's plainly wrong that you've got these kids collected in people smuggling operations on boats at the wrong time stuck in adult prisons.

"If there were no Schapelle Corby there, if there was no Schapelle Corby in a Balinese prison, we'd still be doing this. We'd be obligated to do it.''

Mr Carr said Corby's prison sentence, which was originally due to expire in 2022, was now expected to expire some time in 2017.

He said if Corby's legal team sought parole the government would be "likely to support'' that bid on humanitarian grounds, given her health problems.

Mr Carr was glowing in his praise of Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

"He's a great man he's a great friend of Australia's,'' Mr Carr said.

"He's made the right decision and we welcome it.''

Mr Carr said there was "a level of goodwill'' between Australia and Indonesia: "And it's not a bad thing.''

The Foreign Minister also issued a travel warning to Australians.

"This is a timely message to Australians - especially young Australians - that when you go overseas you're under the law of other countries. You're not operating under Australian law.''

This could end soon ... Schapelle Corby argues with jail security / Pic: Lukman S. Bintoro Source: The Daily Telegraph

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/freedom-near-after-years-in-hell-but-schapelle-corby-is-too-scared-to-hope/story-e6frewmr-1226319050312

Freedom near after years in hell but Schapelle Corby is too scared to hope

Clementine Cuneo  The Daily Telegraph  April 05, 2012

 

CONVICTED drug smuggler Schapelle Corby was last night too scared to get her hopes up after Indonesia's Justice and Human Rights Ministry recommended her jail sentence be slashed by 10 years - meaning she could be back in Australia within weeks.

UPDATE: Schapelle Corby to be paroled in August

Her family is now anxiously awaiting a decision by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who will have the final day on whether Corby is released.

From her cell in Bali's Kerobokan prison, Corby was waiting for more information about the ministry's recommendation before getting her hopes up of being free.

Her sister Mercedes, who was visiting Schapelle when the news broke, said that if Dr Yudhoyono did agree to cut 10 years from Corby's sentence, she would be eligible to go home immediately.

"She will have done eight years in October, plus she's had two years reduced in good behaviour, so that's 10 years," she said.

"So if another 10 years is cut, she should be pretty much eligible for release immediately."

Mercedes said, if released, her sister planned to head straight back to Australia to live with her mother Rosleigh in Queensland.

Corby was jailed for 20 years in 2004 for attempting to smuggle 4.1kg of marijuana into Bali in a body board bag.

The announcement of the major breakthrough in the former Gold Coast beautician's drug saga came as a "pleasant shock" to Corby and her family yesterday when The Daily Telegraph broke the news of the ministry's recommendation to them.

Mercedes was at the prison having a small birthday celebration with Schapelle for their younger sister Mele, who had just turned 22.

"Oh wow, have they recommended clemency? I hope this is true. I better make some calls," she said.


In depth - The Schapelle Corby Files

Pictures of Schapelle Corby through her years in prison

"She will have done eight years in October, plus she's had two years reduced in good behaviour, so that's 10 years," she said.

"So if another 10 years is cut, she should be pretty much eligible for release immediately."

Mercedes said, if released, her sister planned to head straight back to Australia to live with her mother Rosleigh in Queensland.

Corby was jailed for 20 years in 2004 for attempting to smuggle 4.1kg of marijuana into Bali in a body board bag.

The announcement of the major breakthrough in the former Gold Coast beautician's drug saga came as a "pleasant shock" to Corby and her family yesterday when The Daily Telegraph broke the news of the ministry's recommendation to them.

Mercedes was at the prison having a small birthday celebration with Schapelle for their younger sister Mele, who had just turned 22.

"Oh wow, have they recommended clemency? I hope this is true. I better make some calls," she said.

A few hours later Mercedes said the family was "too nervous" to get their hopes up and would await the president's ruling before they celebrated.

Corby first launched her bid for clemency two years ago, appealing for an early release on the grounds she was suffering from mental illness which could endanger her life.

"She's on anti-psychotics to keep her stable, but she goes up and down," Mercedes said.

A Justice Ministry official yesterday revealed the recommendation to slash Corby's sentence was based on humanitarian grounds: "Our office agreed with her clemency. We recommended granting it."

Corby's lawyer Iskander Nawing described it as a "huge development" and a breakthrough.

The recommendation also includes an approval for clemency from the director-general of prisons.

Dr Yudhoyono's decision will be based on the recommendation from the Justice Ministry, as well as advice from the Attorney-General's Department, Foreign Ministry and National Narcotics Board.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/bali-birthday-blues-for-mercedes-corby/story-e6frewmr-1225935669504

Bali birthday blues for Mercedes Corby

Cindy Wockner and Komang Suriadi  The Daily Telegraph  October 08, 2010 

Happy Birthday ... Shapelle Corby's sister Mercedes visits her to Kerobokan Jail / Pic: Lukman S. Bintoro Source: The Daily Telegraph

HER birthday will forever be linked to one of Australia's most notorious incidents - the arrest of her sister Schapelle.

Despite putting on a brave face yesterday, Mercedes Corby marked her 36th birthday in Bali's Kerobokan Jail, spending time with Schapelle on a dark anniversary for the family.

Six years ago today Schapelle was caught in Bali with 4kg of marijuana in her boogie board bag after arriving to celebrate Mercedes' 30th birthday.

There was no celebration then and Mercedes has not had much reason to celebrate since.

As Mercedes left the jail after yesterday's visit along with her Balinese husband Wayan and youngest son Nyoman, born since Schapelle has been in prison, she told of the family's anguish. They never dreamed that six years later they would still be fighting to prove Schapelle innocent or that she would still be behind bars.

For her birthday Schapelle presented Mercedes with a bracelet and earrings she had had made from beads in jail. She spends time making jewellery in her cell.

She then playfully tried to push Mercedes' long hair away so the earrings could be seen.

But she on the verge of tears as the visit ended and Mercedes and the family left. Looking lost, she lingered behind - not wanting to go back to her cell.

"I just can't believe it is six years she has been suffering now. We hope some good news comes soon," Mercedes said.

Schapelle has been diagnosed with a psychotic illness and her plea for clemency from Indonesia's President is on humanitarian grounds that she is mentally ill. Psychiatrists say she lives much of the time in a child-like world and suffers from paranoia.

Mercedes said every day was a struggle for Schapelle. "She still relies on heavy medication to keep her going," she said of the downward slide her sister has been on for the past few years.

Mercedes said it was painful that as part of their battle they have had to deal with rumour and innuendo about the family.

Schapelle maintained from day one that the marijuana, in a vacuum sealed bag inside her unlocked boogie board bag, was not hers and nothing to do with her or her family. The court found her guilty and sentenced her to 20 years jail.

Since being jailed, Schapelle's father and step-father have both passed away. She was close to both men and it was not long after their deaths that doctors said her mental illness started manifesting itself.

Michael Corby had visited his daughter in jail regularly until he was too ill to travel and succumbed to his cancer.

Most hurtful to the family were allegations, made after his death in early 2008, that the drugs were his. A man claiming to be Mr Corby's marijuana supplier claimed that drugs were regularly smuggled into Bali by Michael Corby.

Police in two states, however, have said the allegations are baseless and the Corbys have since had an apology from a media outlet which aired some of them.

"Queensland police has no evidence to link Michael Corby with involvement in the drug trade," police said in a statement. And detectives in Adelaide said the claims of convicted drug dealer Malcolm McCauley were "laughable" and that an extensive investigation found no links between the man and the Corby family. Mercedes said when her father was dying of cancer, he knew he was dying and that if the drugs had been his there was no way he would have let Schapelle go to jail for him.

"My dad was dying and he knew that he didn't have much time left ... there was no way my dad would ever do anything like this or let Schapelle take the rap. Schapelle was his baby girl. There was no way on earth he would let her go to jail for something he did," Mercedes said at the time.

Schapelle's clemency plea - her final bid at some kind of leniency - is currently before the Indonesian President for consideration. There is no date for a decision.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/insane-schapelle-corby-pleads-for-reprieve/story-e6frewmr-1225851574894

'Insane' Schapelle Corby pleads for reprieve

EXCLUSIVE by Cindy Wockner in Bali 

The Daily Telegraph 

April 09, 2010 

DRUG smuggler Schapelle Corby has lodged a plea for clemency from the Indonesian President because of her mental illness.

The plea seeking to have Corby's 20-year jail sentence reduced, changed or quashed completely is contained in hundreds of pages of documents addressed to Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono after exhausting all other appeal avenues.

The plea asks Mr Yudhoyono to give clemency to Corby by removing her sentence completely or slashing the number of years she must serve. But it does not make any suggestion of an alternative sentence.

A clemency request is highly unusual in Indonesia except for a death sentence and where the prisoner refuses to accept guilt and apologise.

Mr Yudhoyono, who has a tough anti-drug regime, has consistently said he will not pardon drug dealers.

The clemency plea says that Corby, who was arrested in October, 2004, is now suffering psychosis and has become insane, with her health and life now at risk.

The document also highlights what the defence lawyers say were legal errors and mistakes in the conduct of the investigation and Corby's trial in the Denpasar District Court.

The clemency plea is backed up by reports from two psychiatrists.

Corby's treating psychiatrist in Bali, Dr Denny Thong, said he observed her for a five-day period in May last year. He concluded she suffers "depression with psychotic symptoms. This condition could endanger her life because she cannot control her mind, feelings and behaviour".

Dr Thong recommends Corby should be moved to an environment where she can be medically supervised.

The clemency plea also includes a report from Australian psychiatrist Dr Jonathan Phillips, who examined Corby in August last year and said that she was suffering severe psychosis - and that it could be said she had become insane.

He said Corby acts in a child-like way and is susceptible to exploitation.

A three-page letter from Corby's sister Mercedes, who said her sister had been sentenced for a crime she did not commit, is also included.

Mercedes said her sister did not get a fair trial and there were many mistakes with the conduct of the police investigation and the subsequent trial.

Issues she highlights include that no fingerprints were taken of the bag containing the marijuana, no video record of the arrest at Bali Airport and no video or CCTV from the airport in Australia.

A decision could take years.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/kerobokan-prison-inside-schapelle-corbys-hell-on-earth/story-e6freuy9-1225797527999

Kerobokan Prison - inside Schapelle Corby's hell on earth

By Kathryn Bonella, author of Hotel Kerobokan  The Daily Telegraph  November 14, 2009

KEROBOKAN Prison's walls touch paradise - surrounded by sun-kissed beaches, luxury villas and the best restaurants in Bali's Seminyak and Legian areas. Inside those walls it's a living hell; a seedy, bizarre world where the unimaginable and shocking become routine life.

Schapelle Corby barely reacted when she found a prisoner hanging by a noose. The Bali Nine's Scott Rush didn't hesitate to help guards drag a body from the cell across the path from his cell; the dead inmate was covered in vomit and flies.

"That's a terrible way to die I reckon, being put in a little cell like that," Rush says. "Since I've been here, two guys have died in solitary cell tikus from tuberculosis and AIDS."

"People couldn't imagine what is behind those walls at Kerobokan," a Brazilian surfer, convicted for drug possession, says.

"It's a mental camp. Inside this place, you get worse not better," adds another Westerner doing 15 years for drugs.

Kerobokan is a dark underworld of drugs, sex, murders, overdoses, violence and filth. It has been home to hundreds of inmates from across the world, usually doing time for drugs, and locals. There is no segregation in the mix of up to 1000 prisoners. Psychopaths, serial killers and paedophiles live alongside petty thieves, card sharks and tourists caught with a couple of ecstasy pills in a Kuta nightclub.

When prisoners first arrive, it doesn't seem so bad. As they walk to their cell, passing prisoners lazing under palm trees, groomed gardens, a Hindu temple and a tennis court, the place resembles a cheap Balinese hotel. Things turn when they go beyond this facade.

The women are taken through a steel door to the cramped, dirty and primitive Block W, where they stay cooped up day and night in cells with up to 15 others. For the men it's more dire initially. They do a stint in an initiation cell, crushed so tightly with up to 25 others that they sleep sitting up or with their legs scissored through the bars. The men share a squat toilet, usually blocked with faeces and stinking out the cell. Poor locals will spend months locked in this cell without being let out once.

Like any hotel, those with cash can buy a room upgrade. Westerners almost always find the money to fast-track themselves out of the initiation cells. The price used to be about $100, until an American surfer, frantic to avoid any time in this cell, slipped the guards $900 and pushed up the cost.

Prisoners with cash can also pay to have their cells renovated. Some spend hundreds of dollars painting, tiling, building shelves and installing a Western toilet. One of Bali's biggest ecstasy dealers, who held great power in jail by slinging the jail boss weekly wads of cash, turned his cell into something that would rival a five-star hotel room. He'd had the walls painted a light coffee colour, sumptuous Bordeaux red carpet laid, a Bose sound system installed and a large plasma television hung on the wall, which he allowed some of the Bali Nine to use to play PlayStation. He also had a fridge stocked with beers and a microwave. To expand the small cell, the inmate paid prisoners to knock down a wall to an adjoining bathroom and convert it into a private ensuite.

Although this powerful inmate was left alone, many of the Westerners are blackmailed by the guards as soon they finish fixing up their cells. The guards often threaten to move them unless they sling more cash. One Argentinian prisoner spent months constructing a jacuzzi behind his cell, but was moved as soon as it was finished. The guards could sell it for a higher price to new inmates.

Almost anything can be bought in Hotel Kerobokan. The guards earn as little as $100 a month, so most are happy to boost their salaries. They arrange days out at the beach, pizza deliveries to the cell door and drug deliveries and sessions with hookers. Savvy guards can triple their monthly income.

Depending on who is the prison boss at the time, and which guards are on duty, the strictness of the jail fluctuates. Some guards work as pimps, organising sex nights where men are allowed to bring their girlfriends in and have sex under the stars. There are times when guards also arrange hookers, walking around in the afternoon showing photographs, so the prisoners can book a session that night.

One European inmate who hadn't had sex in jail for 2½ years decided to splurge $100 to book a hooker. That night when the guards released him from his cell, he walked down the pathway to the empty cellblock and stood in a line behind eight other Westerners, waiting for his turn with the girl. They could watch the action through a small barred window. Finally, it was his turn. He went inside and spent 30 minutes on the dirty, semen-stained mattress. As he walked back to his cell, guards were wandering around crooning "Like a lady? Like a lady?" trying to drum up any late business.

Across the jail, despite sex being banned, male and female inmates partake in every available nook; behind the hall, in storage rooms at the back of the hall, in the church toilet, the mosque toilet and even the boss's office. The jail doctor rents out a mattress in the medical clinic for sex; guards rent out their offices - as well as some of them joining in and having sex with inmate girlfriends in the women's block. Some guards turn a blind eye for a sling, while nastier guards use the chance to bash. A few months ago, a prisoner was bashed when guards discovered his inmate girlfriend was pregnant. Two lovers caught having sex at the back of a hall were beaten.

Prolific sexual activity often goes on in the visiting room. It's not uncommon to see a hand jerking up and down, or females sitting with their legs splayed across a man's lap. The women inmates have trapdoors sewn into the crotch of their jeans for easy access.

Drug dealing inside the jail is also rife. Some of Indonesia's biggest dealers have done time in Kerobokan, and the walls don't stop them dealing - far from it. It is a protected haven, with guards on inmates' payrolls, working to courier drugs in and out, and phoning through warnings if police are planning a drug raid. As police do not have jurisdiction inside the jail, they need a warrant to enter, giving sufficient time for the prisoners to get a call and hide their stashes. In June this year, 300 police gathered for a raid, but aborted it when they learned the prisoners were ready to attack.

Prisoners say Kerobokan is a money-making factory. One dealer ran a furniture factory inside the jail, receiving extra sentence cuts for his efforts. The furniture business was a front for the ecstasy factory he ran behind it. Regularly thousands of pills left the jail hidden in speakers inside the furniture-moving trucks. No one made more than drug dealer Arman, who has since been moved to Nusakambangan Island, where Bali bomber Amrozi spent his last days. In Kerobokan he was earning up to $10,000 a day, selling smack and ice to clubs across Bali, as well as to hundreds of users in jail. Arman squeezed out other smack dealers from the jail market with the help of Bali's vicious gang, Laskar. Mention of this gang's name to a taxi driver in Bali will get a strong reaction. Laskar is regarded as Bali mafia; its members do door security at the main tourist clubs in Legian and Seminyak. When its top eight men, including the No. 1 boss, went to prison for murder, they terrorised the jail.

Rapes, vicious bashings and killings were far more frequent. A girl walking across to a visit was gang-raped by Laskar members. Corby had bricks hurled at her in the women's block. And prisoners were often bashed or kicked in the face for no apparent reason by some of the young recruits. The more senior gang members provided protection for the heroin dealer Arman, who would let the Westerners, including members of the Bali Nine, run up big drug bills. If they didn't pay, Laskar heavies would first threaten and then bash.

Dutch prisoner Aris let his bill spiral out of control without any hope of paying. He was pinned to the cell bars and beaten with sticks almost to death. He was left so badly injured that an Australian inmate went around collecting cash to buy heroin for him to smoke to ease his pain.

One inmate, convicted for trafficking 2.2kg of heroin, was found hanged in his cellblock toilet. Prisoners had heard a gang member yelling at him the night before. The jail deemed it suicide, but police exhumed the body for an autopsy because of a potential link with the syndicate behind the Bali Nine. Nothing was made public and the jail continued to call it a suicide. The prisoners knew it was murder.

Inmates are always looking over their shoulders but with cash, life is a bit more livable. In jail, a slow day can suddenly turn fast and furious. One incident that resonates deeply with many of the Westerners was when an American surfer, Gabriel, tried to escape. He was drunk when he climbed up into a watch tower and stood in full view of the jail drinking three Bintang beers. Then he tied two bed sheets to the tower and abseiled down to freedom. With his long wavy hair, pink floral surf shorts, and a backpack slung over his shoulder, he looked more like a tourist than an inmate as he started walking along the road.

He'd been spotted in the tower. Local inmates, including gang members, and guards raced out of the jail doors, up the road and circled him like a pack of dogs. Inside jail, jealousy is rife between the poor locals and the wealthy Westerners and they used this chance to attack. Gabriel was bashed before being carried back inside the jail. He was dropped on to the floor in an office and guards and prisoners kept kicking and bashing him, hitting his anklebone with a small hammer while he lay unconscious. Several inmates, including Corby, called their consulates for help. Gabriel was later taken out to hospital to have his wounds stitched up. For weeks he was barely able to walk, and for the first time in 25 years, he'd had his long hair shaved off.

For all inmates the threat of being beaten or thrown into an isolation cell always exists no matter how much money they have. Scott Rush was put into the isolation cell tikus for a month. Cash couldn't buy his way out, except to the visiting room. For part of that time he shared the cell, the width of two coffins, with another death row inmate. There was no toilet and they used plastic bags when needed.

Those with long sentences have to make a life for themselves and live their dreams behind bars. Italian inmate Juri Angione decided to propose to his girlfriend and get married in jail. His suit and his bride's dress were made of Italian silk in Italy. He invited 100 guests, including Corby and some of the Bali Nine, and most of his family flew in from Europe. Bali Nine's Martin Stephens has also become engaged since being in jail and has talked about having children.

One of the hardest things for the inmates is dealing with the endless empty hours, weeks, months and years. Filling them is difficult. For a while the Bali Nine men spent days playing tennis, but soon got bored of that.

"I just feel stupid with what I'm doing. It's no way to live a life really, but it's what I have to do. Same as any 10-year-old kid . . . eat, sleep, play sport and play games; that's all I do - it's ridiculous," Rush says.

Hotel Kerobokan: The Shocking Inside Story Of Bali's Most Notorious Jail by Kathryn Bonella, published by Macmillan Australia, $34.99, out now.

http://www.kathrynbonella.com/

"SNOWING IN BALI - WENT STRAIGHT TO NUMBER ONE AT AUSTRALIAN AIRPORTS" 
RE-RELEASED HOTEL KEROBOKAN IS NUMBER 4

SNOWING IN BALI takes you into the very heart of the multi-million dollar narcotics trade on the paradise island Bali.

  • It details the way international dealers smuggle millions of dollars worth of cocaine through the world's most secure airports
  • It charts the careers of Bali’s top western dealers, using first-hand accounts of how they built their empires.
  • It paints a graphic X-rated picture of hedonism and debauchery on a grand scale – with orgies described in detail by drug dealers themselves.
  • It reveals ‘Operation Playboy’ – a Brazilian Federal Police investigation into young, upper middle-class Brazilians, often surfers, using windsurfer booms and surfboards, to smuggle cocaine to Bali and Europe.
  • It gives a deeply personal account of why Bali’s biggest cocaine dealer finally went straight.
  • It exposes the lucrative business of tourists and expats caught with drugs and cutting deals  – making some corrupt Balinese police, judiciary and lawyers richer over night than in their wildest dreams.
  • It shows the rise of young surfers who first came to Bali chasing the perfect waves and who started playing the drug game to pay for this dream life, and turned into some of the island's biggest cocaine traffickers.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/bring-our-schapelle-home-now-or-shell-die/story-e6frewmr-1225766173591

Bring our Schapelle home now or she'll die

The Daily Telegraph  August 26, 2009 

 

SCHAPELLE Corby's sister Mercedes said yesterday that a psychiatrist's report was "terrifying" for the family and she hoped it would spur the Australian Government into pushing to bring the convicted drug trafficker home.

Former Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists president and Associate Professor Jonathan Phillips, who visited Corby in prison earlier this month, said that the 32-year-old former beautician was "hanging on by a thread".

"She was deeply depressed, she was psychotic in the sense that she has lost reality - she was like a little girl," Professor Phillips said.

Should Schapelle be brought home to Australia? Tell us below

"I fear she might take her life, she's already cut her arms badly on two occasions in what were very serious attempts to hurt herself.

 

"She is extremely distressed, very unwell. She cannot be treated in prison."

The psychologist's assessment prompted Mercedes to say: "We have to get proper treatment for Schapelle, outside a jail environment and preferably in Australia, or she will die."

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh and Prime Minister Kevin Rudd have been sent Professor Phillips' report on Corby's state of mind.

Ms Bligh yesterday said there was nothing she could do to ensure Corby returned to Australia but she was sympathetic to Corby's plight.

"These matters are quite appropriately dealt with on a federal level but I have to say I have always thought it would be better if Schapelle Corby served her time in Australia," Ms Bligh said.

"These latest incidents may be an opportunity for that to be reconsidered."

But she said any new efforts would have to be done carefully or they could have "an inadvertent damaging effect".

Mercedes said yesterday that Dr Phillips' report was "terrifying" for the family and she hoped it would spur the Australian Government into action.

"We have to get proper treatment for Schapelle, outside a jail environment and preferably in Australia, or she will die," Mercedes said.

Corby was sentenced to 20 years jail after she was caught at Bali Airport in October 2004 with 4.1kg of marijuana in her boogie board bag.

Last week she was given a four-month sentence cut as part of Indonesian Independence Day celebrations.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/corby-family-fears-for-schapelles-sanity-after-so-long-in-jail/story-e6freuy9-1225753486337

Corby family fears for Schapelle's sanity after so long in jail

By Joe Hildebrand  The Daily Telegraph  July 22, 2009

 

Traumatised ... convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby. Source: The Daily Telegraph

DRUG smuggler Schapelle Corby is so traumatised by her time in jail that she has lost all touch with reality and sometimes even thinks she can walk out any time.

Her condition has so shocked her family that they are begging the Australian Government to send a psychiatrist to Bali to assess her and try to bring her back home for medical care. Corby's uncle Shaun Hatton has approached broadcaster Alan Jones to put pressure on the Government, while sister Mercedes is understood to be making requests via the official channels. Mr Hatton said that when he visited Corby last month in a Bali hospital she sat on the floor for an hour and a half, saying nothing and holding a child's toy. "She goes in and out of lucidity - she's not lucid," he said. "At one stage she sat on the floor with my daughter's stuffed frog that plays tunes and she was there holding it for 90 minutes without moving." Mr Hatton said he visited Corby for four or five hours a day for the three days he was there and did not see a doctor the entire time. She would slip into delusional states in which she would think she could just walk out of custody. "She thinks she can hop up and go, she'd just start to get ready. She'd change her clothes and say 'let's go'," he said. "And we'd have to say, 'No Schapelle, you can't'." Mr Hatton, a Darwin real estate agent, said Corby still maintained her innocence and lived in hope that new evidence would emerge. "Every day she thinks the nightmare's going to finish. Now she's not thinking lucidly at all," he said. "She will not admit guilt because she's not guilty." Mr Hatton said she was in desperate need of medical assessment and care from Australia. "She's just got to be brought back," he said. Mr Hatton said she shared a cell with nine others at Kerobokan jail, where she has been returned to serve out her 20-year sentence.

Jones has vowed to take up Corby's cause.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/schapelle-corby-confused-in-pigtails-clutches-teddy-bear/story-e6freuy9-1225716714155

Schapelle Corby confused, in pigtails, clutches teddy bear

By Cindy Wockner 

The Daily Telegraph 

May 27, 2009

SCHAPELLE Corby cuddled a teddy bear and slept with her head on her mother's lap.

Later she lay down on newspapers spread across the floor as she spent her fourth day in hospital suffering from depression.

Yesterday was another day of torment for Corby and her family as Schapelle struggled to recover from her latest bout of ill health.

Schapelle Corby now paranoid Schapelle's dream to set up prison beauty salon Today marks the fourth anniversary of her conviction and jailing in Bali for 20 years for drug smuggling. Corby has remained in Denpasar's police hospital since Friday night.

It is the second time in a year she has been admitted to hospital for depression. However in those years her condition has deteriorated and she has twice been admitted to hospital suffering depression in the past year. Yesterday with her hair in pigtails, she was every bit the little girl as she lay down cuddling a teddy bear, her head on mother Rosleigh Rose's lap. She has been seen carrying the teddy around the hospital with her for the past few days. One witness said Corby was confused after she tried to enter the wrong hospital room and had to be guided back to her room by her mother. The psychiatrist treating Corby, 31, said she was suffering from depression and needed to be medicated and treated at the hospital at Denpasar's police headquarters. Meanwhile, an uncle who lives in the Northern Territory has called on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to push for clemency for his niece. "Four years ago today Kevin Rudd said he wanted Schapelle to get clemency, but four years on he hadn't done anything," Shun Hatton said. It comes as she this week signed up a new lawyer to represent her and to go over her case from the beginning. He says Corby needs to be treated in a hospital and that her condition cannot be properly treated in the jail. She has been on medication since her admission to hospital last June for two weeks but is believed to have recently stopped taking the proper amounts, resulting in a further downward spiral of her mental condition.

She is being supported in the hospital by her mother Rosleigh Rose, who has flown over from Australia to be with her.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby-paranoid-and-under-psychiatric-care/story-e6frewmr-1225715462497

Schapelle Corby paranoid and under psychiatric care

By Cindy Wockner and Kormang Suriadi 

The Daily Telegraph 

May 25, 2009 

 

SCHAPELLE Corby has become paranoid, unkempt and has been seen carrying a doll about her prison cell as her mental condition deteriorates.

Her mother, Rosleigh Rose, has flown from Australia to Bali to be with her daughter - the best medicine the convicted drug smuggler can have, according to her doctor.

The 31-year-old was taken from Kerobokan jail, where she is serving a 20-year sentence, to Denpasar's police hospital late on Friday and is being treated by a private psychiatrist arranged by her family. Dr Danny Tong visited Corby for 15 minutes yesterday and said that while her condition was improving she was "very depressed" and was on medication, including anti-depressants. "Her mother is here. This is the best medicine for anybody in the world," he said. Ms Rose spent the night in the hospital on Saturday and was with Corby again yesterday, as was Corby's sister Mercedes and her children. Dr Tong said Corby needed to be in a psychiatric hospital in the more secluded hill town of Bangli because she was suffering a "mental problem" and needed a change of environment. However, he was uncertain if Indonesian authorities would allow this. A similar request was denied last year around the time Corby spent two weeks in hospital suffering severe depression. Dr Tong said Corby was brought to hospital because she had become "very illogical". Asked what Corby needed to make her better, he said: "To be set free, I think." Those who have seen Corby say she looks confused, is often teary and at one stage was paranoid about the presence of police at the hospital. Corby was also seen walking around carrying a doll. "According to her cellmates she doesn't sleep at night," Kerobokan jail doctor Agung Hartawan said. "Sometimes she is blank. Sometimes she just hangs around the cell, sometimes she forgets about things. Sometimes she forgets to look after herself."

 Before her recent decline: Schapelle Corby talks of her beauty vision

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby-wants-a-prison-parlour/story-e6frewmr-1225710457365

SCHAPELLE Corby may be a step closer to fulfilling her ambition to become a beauty therapist - teaching prisoners the trade she trained in before her arrest on drugs charges.Source: The Daily Telegraph

 

Schapelle Corby wants a prison parlour

By Cindy Wockner in Jakarta 

The Daily Telegraph 

May 09, 2009

SCHAPELLE Corby may be a step closer to fulfilling her ambition to become a beauty therapist - teaching prisoners the trade she trained in before her arrest on drugs charges.

Corby and other prisoners at Kerobokan Jail in Bali have made a proposal to authorities to set up a beauty salon inside the prison.

The 31-year-old Australian - a trainee beauty therapist before her 2005 conviction for smuggling marijuana into Bali - would train and treat fellow inmates, possibly alongside beauticians from outside. The plan, along with another to open up a small shop selling handicrafts made by women prisoners, is being considered. Gold Coast native Corby - who still maintains she was framed - is a senior prisoner in charge of Kerobokan's handicrafts group. Fellow Australian convict, Bali Nine drug smuggler Matthew Norman, has proposed a program helping to teach English to fellow prisoners and guards. The ideas are aimed at breaking the boredom of daily jail life. Currently there is very little to do, especially for women prisoners. Access to the limited library and tennis and basketball courts is almost non-existent, as they are the domain of male inmates. Women are confined to their cell block unless receiving visitors. "You can't just be stuck in your room all day," Corby's sister Mercedes said last night. Referring to her sister's collapse with depression last year, Mercedes added: "She is still struggling. She still has bad days. It would be good if there was something else to occupy her mind."

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/archive/national-old/schapelle-corby-keeps-280000-after-prosecutor-bungle/story-e6freuzr-1225696989612

Schapelle Corby keeps $280,000 after prosecutor bungle

LONG prison sentence ... Schapelle Corby in jail. Source: The Daily Telegraph

AUTHORITIES have finally confiscated some proceeds from the sale of convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby's book, but the amount is less than half what they originally wanted.

The Queensland Supreme Court today ruled the Commonwealth Director of Prosecutions could take $128,000 in payments made to Schapelle Corby's family, designating it proceeds of crime. It could also seize any future payments made to Corby's sister by the publisher Pan Macmillan Australia. But that falls well short of the $280,000 the DPP was originally seeking. Corby, serving 20 years in a Bali jail for smuggling 4.1kg of marijuana in 2004, was able to get the money from My Story, published in 2006, into her brother-in-law's account before the seizure action was started in the Queensland Supreme Court, The Australian reports. But while Indonesian legal and banking authorities have blocked attempts to seize the advances and magazine payments, Australian prosecutors have been able to seize more than $100,000 in subsequent royalties for the book, which sold more than 100,000 copies in its first year. The Australian reports Commonwealth prosecutors secretly launched legal action in March 2007 alleging the book was a "commercial exploitation of her notoriety resulting from her conviction" and won the case in Queensland's Supreme Court and later at the Court of Appeal. It was the first time prosecutors in Australia had sought to recoup proceeds of crime from the publication of a book. The $280,000 - which included $15,000 for an exclusive interview withNew Idea magazine - was paid into the account of Corby's Bali-based brother-in-law, Wayan Widyartha, before prosecutors launched the legal action to freeze any payments from publishers Pan Macmillan.

Corby's book was co-written by former television producer Kathryn Bonella and is based on a series of secret interviews conducted with Corby in jail.

 

Schapelle Corby keeps $280,000 after prosecutor bungle

http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/business/story/0,,25306325-17044,00.html

Schapelle Corby to keep cash for book

BY:MICHAEL MCKENNA  From:The Australian  April 08, 2009 

SCHAPELLE Corby will be able to keep more than $280,000 from her book because prosecutors were too slow launching court action to seize the money as the proceeds of crime.

Corby, serving 20 years in a Bali jail for smuggling 4.1kg of marijuana in 2004, was able to get the money from My Story, published in 2006, into her brother-in-law's account before the seizure action was started in the Queensland Supreme Court.

But while Indonesian legal and banking authorities have blocked attempts to seize the advances and magazine payments, Australian prosecutors have been able to seize more than $100,000 in subsequent royalties for the book, which sold more than 100,000 copies in its first year.

Commonwealth prosecutors secretly launched legal action in March 2007 alleging the book was a "commercial exploitation of her notoriety resulting from her conviction" and won the case in Queensland's Supreme Court and later at the Court of Appeal.

It was the first time prosecutors in Australia had sought to recoup proceeds of crime from the publication of a book.

The $280,000 - which included $15,000 for an exclusive interview with New Idea magazine - was paid into the account of Corby's Bali-based brother-in-law, Wayan Widyartha, before prosecutors launched the legal action to freeze any payments from publishers Pan Macmillan.

Corby's book was co-written by former television producer Kathryn Bonella and is based on a series of secret interviews conducted with Corby in jail. Despite the two court wins, Indonesian government and bank authorities refused to co-operate with the Australian prosecutors in granting access to Mr Widyartha's bank and the money. But the orders won by prosecutors were able to seize $128,000 in subsequent royalty payments from the book. Documents filed in the Supreme Court last month revealed that a deal had been brokered between prosecutors and Corby. It is understood Corby asked that the $128,000 be given to a cancer charity after the death of her father, Michael, from the disease.

The request was rejected.

Corby's lawyer, Jason Jacobson, said last night he was unable to comment.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/mercedes-corbys-no-boob/story-e6frewmr-1111118503679

Mercedes Corby's no boob

The Daily Telegraph  January 08, 2009

Well paid ... Mercedes Corby. Source: The Daily Telegraph

 

MERCEDES Corby was paid well for her December Ralph magazine bikini cover shoot.

Sources claim she made $50,000 for the eight-page spread. It was a big year for Corby who also had a windfall from Channel 7 in her successful defamation action.

  • Author defamed us, Corby family says The Daily Telegraph, 7 Dec 2012
  • Schapelle Corby's lifeHerald Sun, 29 Jul 2010
  • Retouching Ralph Herald Sun, 23 Jun 2010
  • Schapelle Corby's lifeAdelaide Now, 5 Feb 2010
  • Corby family has made $3m from infamy Courier Mail, 11 Apr 2009

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/corby-family-say-author-eamonn-duff-defamed-them/story-e6freuy9-1226532479859

Corby family say author Eamonn Duff defamed them

Peter Bodkin  The Daily Telegraph  December 07, 2012

Family ties ... convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby  / Pic: Lukman S. Bintoro Source: The Daily Telegraph

 

THE family of convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby is suing the author of a book which they say branded them money-hungry and said they were cashing in on her time in a Balinese jail.

Mercedes Corby, her brother Michael and mother Rosleigh Rose have launched a defamation case in the NSW Supreme Court over the 2011 book Sins of the Father - billed as "the book Schapelle's army of supporters do not want you to read".

The book, written by Fairfax journalist Eamonn Duff, details "explosive" allegations that her father Michael "Mick" Corby Sr, who died in early 2008, ran a drug syndicate and was the one responsible for putting marijuana in her bodyboard bag.

But in their statements of claim, the three family members said the book wrongly suggested they had been party to her father's illicit dealings. They are suing Duff and publisher Allen & Unwin for damages and they have also demanded the work be pulped - with any future editions to exclude all references to them. Both Mercedes and her mother said it falsely implied they benefited to the tune of more than $2 million from "media deals". They claim it also wrongly suggested they were "uncaring" towards Schapelle Corby and were more interested in their own money and celebrity status than comforting their jailed family member. Mercedes Corby received $50,000 in 2008 for a series of bikini-clad pictures in Ralph magazine among her media earnings, which have included a $30,000 interview with New Idea, while her mother was paid $100,000 for one TV interview. Mercedes Corby previously won a confidential payout - reported to be as high as $2 million - after a defamation case against Channel 7 in 2008. Part of the profits from Schapelle Corby's tell-all book My Story were seized in 2009 under proceeds of crime legislation, which stops criminals profiting from their notoriety.

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/gallery/gallery-e6frewxi-1111119557095

Kerobokan jail staff try to persuade Australian Schapelle Corby to go back to her cell block when she wanted to go out of the jail to see her sister Mercedes as she left after visiting time, on Thursday, June 23, 2011. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro 

Schapelle Corby argues with jail security as she didn't want to come to the hall for the Christmas remission announcement at Kerobokan Prison in Bali, Indonesia, in 2011. Corby got 45 days remission from her sentence this Christmas. Picture: Lukman S. Bintoro

Australian Schapelle Corby walks to the women's block inside Kerobokan jail after visiting time, on Tuesday, May 24, 2011. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro

Schapelle Corby wipes her tears during the Christmas service at Kerobokan jail in Bali, on Friday night, December 24, 2010. Corby was expected to get 45 days special remission to mark Christmas. Picture: Lukman S Bintoro

The spot of Schapelle Corby mattress in the cell number one at the women block of Kerobokan Jail in Bali, Tuesday, January 12, 2009. Picture: Bintoro Lukman S

Australian drug convicted Schapelle Corby splashing water to a national TV in her cell at Kerobokan Jail in Bali, Tuesday, January 12, 2009. Picture: Bintoro Lukman S

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/gallery/gallery-e6frewxi-1111119542342

In the dock ... Schapelle Corby waits in a cell for a court hearing during her trial in May 2005. The case for Schapelle's guilt or innocence has continued beyond the court walls, however 

Jodi Power, once a friend of Schapelle and her sister Mercedes, has made a series of damaging and unsubstantiated claims about the Corby family to Channel 7.

Schapelle's sister Mercedes Corby pictured in Denpasar in February 2007. Mercedes has been a staunch defender of her sister since her arrest in 2004.

Up in smoke ... Channel 7 showed this image in February 2007 allegedly showing Mercedes Corby smoking cannabis with a bong.

Gold Coast businessman and discharged bankrupt Ron Bakir established the company Schapelle Corby Pty Ltd, suggested he would help fund the defence, and later claimed the Corbys owed him money.

Team Corby ... Schapelle with her Indonesian lawyers, Erwin Siregar, left, and the flamboyant Hotman Paris Hutapea.

Schapelle's half-brother, James Kisina, was travelling with his sister when she was arrested. Last year he was arrested after a violent home invasion. later pleaded guilty to a series of offences, including producing and possessing marijuana. Picture: Channel 9

Schapelle's mother, Rosleigh Rose. She has said her daughter is uninterested in doing her prison time in Australia, saying Schapelle has no desire to be among the "big butch sheilas" in Australian women's jails.

Michael Corby, Schapelle's father, pictured here at a rally to mark her birthday in July 2005. He was convicted for marijuana possession in the 1970s, but protested his innocence. "Some girl had it and they busted the whole joint and I had to go along for the ride," he said.

Celebrity support ... Indonesian soapie starlet Anisa Tri Hapsari was a public backer of Schapelle during her court cases in 2005. Picture: Channel 7

 

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/corby-family-and-friends-finally-free-to-smile-with-hope/story-e6frewmr-1226364981321

Corby family and friends finally free to smile with hope

  • Cindy Wockner in Bali 
  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 24, 2012
    • IT was a smile only the promise of freedom can bring.
    • Guards at Bali's Kerobokan prison yesterday said Schapelle Corby was beaming after learning another five years had been slashed from her sentence - meaning she could be eligible to apply for parole later this year."She looked so happy, she kept smiling and walking around. Not like normal," one guard said.
    • The decision by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to grant Corby's clemency request on humanitarian grounds has given the 34-year-old new hope after eight torturous years in the notorious jail.
    • An Indonesian Justice Ministry official said Corby - sentenced to 20 years after being caught with 4.1kg of marijuana at Denpasar Airport in 2004 - would be eligible to apply for parole after serving two thirds of her sentence.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nations-deny-deal-to-release-smugglers/story-e6freuy9-1226364974624

Nations deny deal to release smugglers

  • Patrick Lion 
  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 24, 2012 
  • PEOPLE smugglers are at the centre of a fresh diplomatic dispute after Indonesia yesterday expressed hope its clemency for Schapelle Corby would trigger the release of some of their own people from Australian jails. A total of 149 Indonesians are in prisons across the country on federal charges, with many of them convicted under people smuggling laws. Eighty eight are in NSW jails, including 68 charged under people smuggling laws. They are costing NSW taxpayers about $70,000 annually. Indonesia's plea for future leniency came after Saudi Arabia last month exonerated 22 of the many Indonesian maids on death row and allowed them to return to Indonesia. In Australia, legal experts and the opposition have questioned a "curious" sequence of events involving Indonesia's call for an exchange of leniency in late April over the cases of Corby and people smugglers, which Labor has previously described as "vile scum". Australia launched a review of 28 suspected underage smugglers on May 2 and announced the release of three minors last week before the Corby decision on Tuesday. Foreign Minister Bob Carr yesterday denied any deal had been done and insisted decisions were made on merit but admitted Australia's actions may have "created a level of comfort". "If there were no Schapelle Corby in a Balinese prison we'd still be releasing minors, kids on fishing boats who'd been collected through people smuggling," he said. Indonesian Minister for State Secretriat, Sudi Silalahi, said President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono cut Corby's term on humanitarian grounds but described it as part of a reciprocal arrangement with Australia. "It's not just a promise. Many have been followed through and already returned," he said. Indonesian Justice Minister Amir Syamsuddin said there was no promise but that he hoped the decision would help his citizens in Australia, particularly underage prisoners.

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said he had no reason not to believe Senator Carr but coalition foreign affairs spokesman Julie Bishop said it was a stretch to claim it was a coincidence.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/aussie-lives-rest-on-sbys-change-of-heart/story-e6freuy9-1226364971834

Aussie lives rest on SBY's change of heart

  • Cindy Wockner 
  • The Daily Telegraph 
  • May 24, 2012

OFFICIALS will never escape the fact the decision to grant Schapelle Corby clemency came as underage Indonesians on people smuggling charges were being released from Australian jails.

While both sides were yesterday distancing themselves from any suggestion a deal had been done, the timing was interesting to say the least. Ministers on the Indonesian side even said that, while there had been no promise from Australia, they certainly hoped for some reciprocity. It was always going to be a hard ask for Indonesia's anti-drugs president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to grant clemency to Corby - especially as she has never admitted guilt or apologised. Prisoners in Indonesia get treated favourably on clemency appeals if they repent. Corby always maintained she was innocent, with her clemency plea on humanitarian grounds of her mental illness. Then suddenly SBY, as he is known in Indonesia, agreed to give her a five-year sentence cut. It is true that Australian officials have done a massive amount behind the scenes on Corby's behalf - and indeed on behalf of other Australians locked up in Kerobokan, including the two Bali Nine members on death row. They too have lost all appeals and must now rely on SBY to grant clemency. Their lives are riding on it. With all sides denying any formal deal was done, it must be said it was fortuitous indeed for Corby that so many underage and teenage boys have been wrongly imprisoned in Australian adult jails for crewing people-smuggling vessels. Several were returned home in the past week - around the same time the Corby clemency papers were signed on May 15.

 

They too have lost all appeals and must now rely on SBY to grant clemency. Their lives are riding on it.

With all sides denying any formal deal was done, it must be said it was fortuitous indeed for Corby that so many underage and teenage boys have been wrongly imprisoned in Australian adult jails for crewing people-smuggling vessels. Several were returned home in the past week - around the same time the Corby clemency papers were signed on May 15. Other visitors to the jail said Corby appeared in good spirits and was smiling and laughing during the visiting period. Corby, who has never admitted guilt, developed a severe mental illness since being locked up and now survives on anti-psychotic medication. Her lawyer Iskandar Nawing said she had been "very very lucky" to get clemency, adding it was a "gift from God".

Indonesian politicians suggested the decision could lead to reciprocal treatment for compatriots in Australian jails, although Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr denied there was any deal with the country. Mr Nawing's next move would be to seek parole and was hopeful of success - even though no foreigner has been granted it in Indonesia recently. Parole is extremely difficult for foreign prisoners to get. They need to have a family member with local ties or their embassy or consulate has to guarantee they will remain within Indonesia while the remainder of the sentence is served on parole. Mercedes is married to a Balinese man, they live in Bali and have three young children.Records are not easy to obtain but officials said they could only remember one case of a foreigner getting parole whose embassy was the guarantor. If the prisoner violates any of the terms, parole is withdrawn. The clemency decision came as underage Indonesians arrested and jailed on people-smuggling charges were being returned to the country after serving time in Australian adult jails. Indonesia's Justice Minister Amir Syamsuddin said the Australian government had not promised anything - but his country was hoping for "reciprocity" regarding Indonesians in our jails. "The government hopes (Australia) can do the same for our citizens, especially children (in jail) in Australia. The Australian government did not promise anything but we hope to get one positive response from the Australian government," Mr Syamsuddin said. He said one of the reasons Corby's clemency was granted was that the punishment for marijuana possession was much lighter in other countries. It was also suggested that the fact the drug was marijuana and not heroin or cocaine had also been a factor in Corby's favour. However Indonesian House of Representatives Deputy Speaker Promono Anung described the cut as excessive.

"A five-year clemency is too much for someone who committed a serious crime like Corby," he said.

"The clemency reflects Australia's strong diplomacy to protect its citizens. Our government should follow the Australian government when it comes to the protection of people abroad."Ahmad Basarah, a member of the Indonesian parliament's legal and human rights commission, said it was a sign of diplomatic weakness.= "The Indonesian government should have assured the Australian government to also grant clemency for Indonesians serving sentences in Australia before signing the letter to grant Corby's (clemency)," he said.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/indepth/schapelle-corby

http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3658867.htm

Australian Broadcasting Corporation Broadcast: 20/12/2012 Reporter: Nick McKenzie

Eight people, including two customs officers and one quarantine official, have been arrested over their involvement in smuggling drugs through Sydney airport

Transcript

CHRIS UHLMANN, PRESENTER: A root-and-branch overhaul of Customs - that's the Government pledge after police revealed the latest arrests in a two-year investigation into drug importation. In all, eight people have been arrested including two Customs officers and a quarantine official. The police operation centred on Sydney Airport where some of the people paid to secure our borders now stand accused of guiding through contraband. Shortly I'll discuss that with Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare.

 

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470

THE discovery of a sophisticated drug smuggling racket allegedly involving Sydney Airport Customs officers has prompted the establishment of a reform board to ensure the service is clean.

Two Customs officers, one officer from the quarantine service and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation involving the AFP, Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI)

Read more: http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470#ixzz2FgAttXMX

http://www.sowetanlive.co.za/news/world/2012/12/21/police-arrest-8-in-sydney-airport-for-drug-smuggling

Police arrest 8 in Sydney airport for drug smuggling

2012/12/21 | SAPA-AP

http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3658867.htm

                      Corrupt Customs officers exposed at Sydney Airport

                  Australian Broadcasting Corporation Broadcast: 20/12/2012 Reporter: Nick McKenzie

Eight people, including two customs officers and one quarantine official, have been arrested over their involvement in smuggling drugs through Sydney airport

Transcript

CHRIS UHLMANN, PRESENTER: A root-and-branch overhaul of Customs - that's the Government pledge after police revealed the latest arrests in a two-year investigation into drug importation. In all, eight people have been arrested including two Customs officers and a quarantine official. The police operation centred on Sydney Airport where some of the people paid to secure our borders now stand accused of guiding through contraband. Shortly I'll discuss that with Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare.

But first, for the past six months Nick McKenzie has tracked this investigation for 7.30 and Fairfax media. It now shapes as one of the nation's most serious corruption scandals. Until tonight we've been holding Nick McKenzie's report for operational and legal reasons, but now he can bring you the inside story.

NICK MCKENZIE, REPORTER: Late one night in early March at this Woolooware apartment block in the south of Sydney, the NSW police drug squad staged a raid. The police burst into apartment number seven and found five kilograms of pseudoephedrine tablets, as well as steroids and 14 grams of cocaine. The raid was linked to one of the biggest law enforcement corruption scandals to hit Australia in decades. It's a scandal which, until now, has remained a secret.

The drugs found here at this apartment block behind me came via a most remarkable route. Not only did they pass through what should have been one of Australia's most secure sites, they did so with the help of suspected corrupt Federal Government officials. These officials were meant to be guarding the nation's borders. Instead, they've been involved in no less than alleged drug trafficking and bribery.

The hub of this alleged corrupt activity is Australia's biggest airport. Sydney Airport plays host to thousands of passengers every day, screened by Customs officers whose job it is to prevent drugs and other prohibited goods entering Australia.

But far from being secure, it's suspected to be wide open to systemic corruption.

NEIL FERGUS, FORMER DIRECTOR OF SYDNEY OLYMPIC SECURITY : The capacity for a corrupt insider appropriately motivated to find ways through the system is actually quite strong and it probably always will be, so it is of paramount importance that corrupt insiders are detected and dealt with.

NICK MCKENZIE: Inside the apartment that was raided in March was Colombian-born Sydney man Diego Refojus. Refojus is a minor player in the underworld, a drug trafficker with prior convictions for aggravated burglary. But a Fairfax-7.30 investigation has discovered that the drugs found in his apartment were allegedly smuggled through the airport with the help of members of a suspected corrupt cell of Customs officials. The alleged members of the cell know the drug detection system back to front and know how to defeat it as well.

STEVE HUTCHINS, PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE ON BORDER SECURITY (2011): Customs officers would not have criminal records. They would have impeccable records.

NICK MCKENZIE: They'd be the perfect man to have on the inside.

STEVE HUTCHINS: They would be the perfect person.

NEIL FERGUS: If we have corrupt Customs officers, they do - they know how the system works. ... You're undermining everything that Customs stands for.

NICK MCKENZIE: Security concerns at Sydney Airport have persisted for years. In 2005, a leaked Customs report revealed organised crime had infiltrated Sydney Airport. The Federal Government ordered an inquiry.

Neil Fergus, former head of the Sydney Olympic security centre, helped Sir John Wheeler conduct his inquiry which revealed massive shortcomings and highly dysfunctional relationships between Customs, state and federal police and private airport security.

NEIL FERGUS: There were weaknesses with the CCTV technologies, the sharing of that and the use of that. There were issues in terms of intelligence sharing. There were a whole raft of issues.

NICK MCKENZIE: The Howard Government moved quickly to reform airport security and policing.

JOHN HOWARD, THEN PRIME MINISTER: I think we do have a high order of security at our airports, but it can be made better.

NICK MCKENZIE: But Fergus has told 7.30 the security reforms he called for were never fully realised.

NEIL FERGUS: I can't hand on heart, Nick, say that it has worked to the extent that we would have liked. I suspect it has been less effective than we hoped.

NICK MCKENZIE: In late 2007, in a report that was kept secret, a top-ranking Customs official urged a doubling in the numbers of anti-corruption staff and warned that the agency was terribly exposed without major reforms including drug and alcohol testing of Customs officers and mandatory reporting of fraud, corruption and serious misconduct. But those calls would go mostly unheeded for the next five years, leaving Customs without vital anti-corruption safeguards, a fact that shocks Neil Fergus.

NEIL FERGUS: Absolutely stunned. And to be honest, Nick, I didn't realise that that was the situation. So an agency of such critical importance to Australia's national security must have an appropriate vetting regime, must have an internal affairs or integrity section, must have alcohol and drug testing. It's almost defies belief if, as you tell me, those things are only being addressed now.

NICK MCKENZIE: In March 2009 the still unplugged gaps in airport security were dramatically illustrated with the fatal bashing of a Hell's Angels bikie associate at the Qantas domestic check-in terminal.

Airport security failed to stop the brawl and the CCTV cameras failed to capture vision that could be used effectively in court.

CLIVE SMALL, FORMER NSW POLICE ASST COMMISSIONER: Given the seriousness of the problem of drugs and other contraband being smuggled through the airports and given the publicly proclaimed high profile that was given to the security of airports, I would have thought the cameras would have worked.

NICK MCKENZIE: In 2009 the AFP's new airport policing squad zeroed in on Wayne Cleveland, a member of the infamous surf gang the Bra Boys. Police believed Cleveland's drug syndicate had for over a decade been using corrupt plane cleaners and caterers to smuggle cocaine, including this stash found by authorities in 2007.

???: Inside we have blocks of a white, hard substance in a vacuum-sealed package.

NICK MCKENZIE: In August 2009 Cleveland was filmed meeting one of his corrupt airline catering and cleaning contacts to organise another drug importation.

Cleveland was busted and later convicted along with two corrupt airline cleaners who both had been granted Federal Government aviation security identity cards even though they had prior criminal convictions.

Last year Steve Hutchins led a federal parliamentary committee that toured major airports examining gaps in border security.

STEVE HUTCHINS: But if you work here, you know exactly where the black spots are. You know where to get - smuggle gear in and where to get it out as well.

NICK MCKENZIE: Law enforcement officials told Hutchins privately that dozens or even hundreds of airport and waterfront staff had links to organised crime.

STEVE HUTCHINS: For some time, particularly the Australian Crime Commission, the Australian Federal Police, have been highlighting the amount of infiltration in some areas of the port and the airport. They suspect it's about three per cent of people who work in or about those areas that may be involved in serious and organised crime.

NICK MCKENZIE: Hutchins was warned privately by police of the challenges they faced, including a rise in cocaine smuggling through Australian airports, so his committee recommended new and sweeping overhauls of airport security.

STEVE HUTCHINS: So when Qantas introduced a direct flight to Buenos Aires, police said definitely that that would increase the amount of cocaine coming into the country or the opportunity for it to come into the country and inevitably it has.

NICK MCKENZIE: Fairfax and 7.30 can reveal that over the last two years figures in the underworld began to talk of some very special inside help at Sydney Airport. One of those with friends in the airport was underworld figure Alex Taouil.

In his book Blood Money, former NSW Police assistant commissioner Clive Small documented the rise in the underworld of Alex Taouil, seen here in this photo with Melbourne underworld boss Mick Gatto.

CLIVE SMALL: He's certainly moved much closer to the top in the past decade to the extent if he's associating with the likes of Gatto and a number of other people he's been - he is certainly towards the top and has got a wide network of associations.

NICK MCKENZIE: Alex Taouil's alleged contact inside Customs, Adrian Lamella, has an interesting history for a man whose job involves detecting drug traffickers. Publicly available records show that in 2008 the NSW police allege they found Lamella and two other men in a car with five small bags of cocaine, some of which Lamella later admitted to using. Two years after that, Lamella was involved in a property deal involving a unit in this apartment block with a man called Joseph Harb who'd later be arrested for drug trafficking.

Joseph Harb and Alex Taouil are not Lamella's only alleged questionable associates; nor is Lamella the only Customs officer with suspected links to the criminal underworld. According to intelligence obtained by Fairfax and 7.30, several policing and anti-corruption agencies suspect that Lamella is part of an allegedly corrupt cell of Customs officers working at Sydney Airport.

STEVE HUTCHINS: Customs is a problem. It would be a problem because a number of the areas that were recommended in the report weren't proceeded with by the Commonwealth. Now one of the areas of course is the role of the trusted insider.

NICK MCKENZIE: Well-placed sources say this cell of Customs officers has allegedly helped smuggle suitcases in backpacks filled with drugs past screening points, an activity suspected to have occurred every few months for several years. It's understood that around 12 months ago the cameras at Sydney Airport were secretly turned on the suspected Customs officers by Australia's secretive and powerful anti-corruption agency, the Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity. Soon, Customs officers' phone conversations were being tapped.

It was these tapped phone calls that led the NSW police drug squad to Diego Refojus' Woolooware apartment in March and the seizure of five kilograms of pseudoephedrine. Refojus is linked to two members of the allegedly corrupt Customs cell who are believed to have been at his apartment in the hours before the drug squad burst through.

Incredibly, up to 15 Customs staff at Sydney Airport are believed to have engaged in either serious misconduct or corruption. From that group, a core cell of up to 10 have been involved in drug trafficking and bribery.

Until this week, only one Customs officer had been arrested and accused in court of drug trafficking, arrested with him in August was Joseph Harb who was accused of smuggling drugs through Sydney Airport. This week, Adrian Lamella became the second Customs officer arrested and remanded into custody to face serious corruption charges.

Also arrested was his ex-girlfriend, a quarantine inspection official accused of leaking information to him.

Several other Customs staff remain under investigation, but are still working at Sydney Airport or other locations. Incredibly, it's only now that Customs are starting to implement common anti-corruption measures such as drug testing and the mandatory reporting of corruption. Unsurprisingly, the scandal is sparking calls for a full inquiry.

STEVE HUTCHINS: Look, I would call for a Royal Commission. We're not talking about small goods being knocked off anymore. We're talking about the importation of drugs.

NICK MCKENZIE: There's been a litany of reports, yet in 2012 we're still encountering very serious organised crime problems. Is it time to say, "Enough reports. Let's have something like a proper judicial inquiry, a Royal Commission?"

NEIL FERGUS: Look, I take the point that maybe there have been too many reports and not enough action taken, so, yeah, a commission of inquiry with judicial powers: it might be appropriate.

CHRIS UHLMANN: Nick McKenzie reporting.

 

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470

Fears over Sydney Airport drug import ring

 

THE discovery of a sophisticated drug smuggling racket allegedly involving Sydney Airport Customs officers has prompted the establishment of a reform board to ensure the service is clean.

Two Customs officers, one officer from the quarantine service and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation involving the AFP, Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI).

The operation, codenamed Marca, started nearly two years ago but one of the accused Customs officers began work as early as 2006.

Authorities will also review the travel patterns of two alleged drug mules prior to the start of operation Marca.

One of the young women, a professional dancer, is associated with businessman Jim Byrnes who on Thursday offered $20,000 surety when she applied for bail in a Sydney court.

Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare said more arrests were possible and he had a message for the estimated 5000 Customs officers working on Thursday.

"You can expect more stings, you can expect more arrests and you can expect more reform," he told reporters in Sydney.

"If you're corrupt we'll hunt you down and lock you up."

Around January, Customs identified what it believed was potential evidence of corruption at Sydney Airport and referred its suspicions to the ACLEI.

Customs acting chief Michael Pezzullo said he was disappointed but not surprised by the corruption revelations.

"I'm not so naive as to think that criminal elements will not attempt to penetrate this service, its systems and its staff," he told reporters.

Mr Clare announced the federal government would be establishing a Customs Reform Board which would provide him with advice and recommendations on how to bolster integrity in the agency.

The board members will be "Australia's best corruption hunter", former royal commission head Justice James Wood, former NSW police commissioner Ken Moroney and former TNT CEO David Mortimer.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) Commissioner Tony Negus said the investigation may result in more arrests and there were fears more imports may have entered the country before it began.

"What these people have done is let everyone down in that process by allegedly bringing people past those barriers and past that process without any individual scrutiny," Mr Negus said.

"They're trusted to make judgments about passengers and they really act in those areas as the gatekeeper."

The Customs officers allegedly arranged for the two women to travel overseas and bring 10kg quantities of the precursor drug pseudoephedrine - used to manufacture methamphetamine - back from Thailand and another undisclosed location.

They would meet their accomplices at the plane, escort them through the Customs area of the airport and then into the arrivals hall where they were free to continue on their way with the drugs.

Mr Negus said he wasn't surprised by media reports linking the operation to bikies and other organised crime groups.

This week, charges were laid against four of the co-accused relating to two alleged shipments which entered Australia via Sydney Airport in 2009 and 2010.

Four others were charged in August and October and all eight remain before the courts.

Independent Senator Nick Xenophon has requested Mr Clare release previous reports from former Customs officer Allan Kessing who was convicted in 2007 of leaking the documents to the media.

Acting Greens leader Adam Bandt said the new board was "a nice idea" but it was time for a national anti-corruption body.

The Community and Public Sector Union, which includes Customs workers, said it was disgusted and shocked at the allegations and would co-operate fully with the new board.


Read more: http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470#ixzz2FmToG1N4

Schapelle Corby

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schapelle_Corby

John Patrick Ford, a prisoner at Port Phillip Prison who was awaiting trial and was subsequently convicted on unrelated charges, was flown to Indonesia to give evidence in Corby's defence.

Ford testified that he overheard a conversation in prison between two men and alleged that one of the men planted the marijuana in Corby's body board bag in Brisbane with the intention of having another person remove it in Sydney. He stated that the drugs were owned by Ron Vigenser, who had been a prisoner at the same jail as Ford.[13] He stated that a mix-up resulted in the marijuana not being removed and subsequently being transported to Indonesia, all without Corby's knowledge. He refused to name the man who he claimed planted the drugs. The prosecution pointed out that his evidence was entirely hearsay and that he was facing trial for several serious offences in Australia. In the Australian media, Vigenser strongly denied any connection with the drugs and reportedly gave a statement to the Australian Federal Police.

Schapelle Leigh Corby (born 10 July 1977) is an Australian woman convicted of drug smuggling who is imprisoned in Indonesia.

Corby is serving a 20-year sentence (from which she has received 27 and a half months' remission) for the importation of 4.2 kg (9.3 lb) of cannabis into Bali, Indonesia. She was convicted and sentenced in Bali on 27 May 2005 by the Denpasar (Indonesia) District Court and currently serves her sentence in Kerobokan Prison, Bali. On appeal, her conviction and sentence were confirmed with finality by the Indonesian Supreme Court. In March 2010 Corby petitioned the President of Indonesia for clemency on the grounds of mental illness, and in May 2012 he granted a five-year sentence reduction.[1]

Corby has maintained from the time of her arrest that the drugs were planted in her body board bag and that she did not know about them.[2] Her trial and conviction were a major focus of attention for the Australian media. As of June 2012, her due release date, with remissions, is September 2017.[3]

Corby lived in the town of Tugun on the Gold Coast in the Australian state of Queensland. She enrolled in a part-time beauty therapy course at a TAFE institute, finishing two of four course modules. She then worked in her family's fish and chip shop.[4] Her father worked as a coal miner. Corby’s older sister, Mercedes, married a Balinese man and lives in Bali.[5] In the mid-1990s, Corby met a Japanese man, Kimi Tanaka, who was on a working holiday in Australia and the two began dating.[5] On his return to Japan, Corby continued to visit him and the two married in June 1998 in the Japanese town of Omaezaki, Shizuoka Prefecture. While living in Omaezaki she worked at a ryokan (Japanese inn). Her husband also found work in the hospitality industry and as a seasonal worker on nearby tea farms. The couple separated and Corby returned to Australia in July 2000. The couple's divorce was finalised in 2003. Tanaka remarried and became a father and, after October 2004, did not have any further contact with Corby.[6] Returning home to Australia, Corby had a stopover in Bali where she had been five times since the age of sixteen, which included stopovers on her way to or from Japan.[7]

On 8 October 2004, Corby, her brother and two friends flew from Brisbane to Bali transiting in Sydney. It was her first visit to Bali in four years, having several previous stopovers between Australia and Japan to visit her sister, Mercedes.[8]

Passing through customs upon her arrival at Ngurah Rai Airport in Denpasar, Corby was apprehended by customs officers. She was found to have 4.2 kg (9.3 lb) of cannabis in a double plastic vacuum-sealed plastic in her unlocked body board bag. Customs officer Gusti Nyoman Winata said that she tried to prevent him from opening the compartment of the bag containing the cannabis. Corby denied this during the trial, saying she originally opened the bag after being asked by Winata whose bag it was. Corby said she and the customs official had difficulty understanding each other.[8] No CCTV footage of this interaction was retrieved or preserved.[9]

The four bags belonging to Corby and her companions were not weighed individually at Brisbane Airport, with a total weight of 65 kg being taken instead. The Bali police and customs did not record the weight of the bags,[8] despite requests from Corby for them to do so.[4]

Corby stated that she had no knowledge of the drugs until the body board bag was opened by customs officers.

The prosecution case was based on the customs official's testimony that Corby said the bag was hers, and that it was found to contain 4.2 kg of cannabis. Four customs officials present when her bag was first examined in Bali said she tried to stop the bag being opened, and that she had said "I have some..."[5]

Three of Corby's travelling companions testified that they had seen her pack the bag before leaving for the airport and that only the flippers and yellow body board were inside it. In contrast to the testimony of the custom's officials, her companions said that Corby opened the bag herself at the customs counter.[4] Despite repeated requests from Corby's companions and lawyers, the bag was not tested for fingerprints.[4]

Corby's lawyers argued that she had no knowledge of the cannabis until customs officials at the airport found it. Her defence centred on the theory that she had become an unwitting drug courier for what was supposed to have been an interstate shipment of drugs between Brisbane and Sydney in Australia[citation needed] – a claim that was later supported when the former head of operations for the Australian Federal Police's internal investigation unit, Ray Cooper, claimed that it was well known within the AFP that some passengers were unwittingly being used to transfer drugs between domestic airports in Australia.[10] According to her lawyers, the cannabis was meant to have been removed in Sydney. Corby's former lawyer, Robin Tampoe, later said that he made up the claim about the baggage handlers and apologised to them.[11]

The Australian Government offered the services of two Queen's Counsel on a pro-bono basis.[12] However, the offer was rejected.[citation needed] The Corby family subsequently took up the offer for the High Court appeal but after more allegations of bribery by the barristers,[clarification needed] further assistance was refused.[citation needed]

John Ford's allegations

John Patrick Ford, a prisoner at Port Phillip Prison who was awaiting trial and was subsequently convicted on unrelated charges, was flown to Indonesia to give evidence in Corby's defence.

Ford testified that he overheard a conversation in prison between two men and alleged that one of the men planted the marijuana in Corby's body board bag in Brisbane with the intention of having another person remove it in Sydney. He stated that the drugs were owned by Ron Vigenser, who had been a prisoner at the same jail as Ford.[13] He stated that a mix-up resulted in the marijuana not being removed and subsequently being transported to Indonesia, all without Corby's knowledge. He refused to name the man who he claimed planted the drugs. The prosecution pointed out that his evidence was entirely hearsay and that he was facing trial for several serious offences in Australia. In the Australian media, Vigenser strongly denied any connection with the drugs and reportedly gave a statement to the Australian Federal Police.

An A$1,000,000 reward was offered for information to substantiate claims made by Ford about baggage handlers with no result. Following his return from Bali, Ford was convicted of rape. Subsequently, in prison, he was beaten and stabbed and then held in solitary protective custody. Ford's wife stated that this was a consequence of evidence he gave at Corby's trial.[14]

[edit] Alleged involvement of baggage handlers

Corby's legal defence suggested that airport baggage handlers had put the drugs in Corby's bag, but they could not provide substantive probative evidence of this.[15] In a June 2008 documentary, Schapelle Corby: The Hidden Truth, Corby's former lawyer, Robin Tampoe, said that he fabricated the defence theory that Australian baggage handlers could have planted the drugs in Corby's luggage and that former Australian foreign minister Alexander Downer told him he suspected Corby's brothers were behind the convicted drug smuggler's crime.[16]

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Corby flew out of Sydney on the same day (8 October 2004) as a large shipment of cocaine was shipped out of the airport by a drug ring involving corrupt baggage handlers. During the week of 9 May 2005 several arrests occurred in Australia related to cocaine smuggling through Sydney airport.[17] Her defence claimed that the cannabis was planted in her bag by mistake by baggage handlers. However, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) commissioner, Mick Keelty, stated that a key aspect of her defence was not supported by the available intelligence[18] and that the cocaine-smuggling ring which had been discovered involved the reception of shipments of drugs from overseas, not the transportation of drugs domestically.[19]

CCTV cameras at the Bali airport could not corroborate or contradict Corby's account of what happened in customs. The prosecutor said the tapes were not checked. The defence requested to see them. Corby's mother claims that Schapelle requested the CCTV footage be shown in court, to which the judge replied, "We will use that if we need to". Corby's mother claims the footage was never shown.[20] According to the documentary Ganja Queen, which aired on HBO, the Closed-Circuit TV Cameras (CCTV) within the airport were not operable the day of Corby's flight.

Corby's other luggage was not weighed, despite her requests. However, there was no obligation upon Indonesian police to do so. Her belongings were searched after she was taken into custody.[21][not in citation given]

On 30 June 2011, a woman came forward who had dated a Brisbane Airport baggage handler, a colleague of whom allegedly hid a large bag of marijuana in a traveller's bag in October 2004.[22]Ron Bakir

Main article: Ron Bakir

Ron Bakir, a Gold Coast entrepreneur, said he had retained the services of the Australian law firm Hoolihans to investigate the origin of the drugs. He made statements suggesting that he would fund Corby's defence. Bakir later registered a company titled Schapelle Corby Pty Ltd.[23] It was reported that he told the Corby family that they owed him $500,000, though Bakir denied this.[24]

Bakir accused the prosecution team (chief prosecutor Ida Bagus Wiswantanu) of seeking a bribe to reduce the requested sentence. The prosecution team and the Indonesian government vehemently denied that this occurred. Corby's legal team were openly angry with Bakir since this could cause the imposition of a more severe penalty.[25]

Bakir cut ties with the Schapelle Corby case on 24 June 2005 after Corby wrote a letter asking him to dissociate himself.[24] Schapelle Corby Pty Ltd was voluntarily de-registered on 23 October 2005.

[edit] Pleas to be acquitted

Corby made pleas to be released. At the defence's last address to the court, on 29 April 2005, Corby said to the three judges:

I cannot admit to a crime I did not commit. And to the judges, my life at the moment is in your hands, but I would prefer if my life was in your hearts....And your Honour, I ask of you to show compassion, to find me innocent, to send me home. Saya tidak bersalah ("I am not guilty", in Indonesian).[26]

Corby also wrote to the case's prosecutor, Ida Bagus Wiswantanu, and judges with a request for leniency.[27]

[edit] Other aspects

The bag of cannabis was not fingerprinted by the Indonesian custom officials or police, nor analysed to determine its origin.[28] Tim Lindsay of the University of Melbourne, an expert on Asian law, suggested that a greater focus on the weaknesses of the forensic evidence could have helped Corby's case.[29]

The Australian Federal Police said that an offer to DNA test the cannabis was refused by Schapelle Corby's legal team.[30][31] Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said that the Indonesian Police rejected the Australian Government's request to have the AFP test the drugs.[32]

[edit] Verdict and sentence

Wikinews has related news: Schapelle Corby found guilty, sentenced to 20 years

 

The verdict in the Corby trial was broadcast live on television in Australia and the Nine Network's television coverage was also broadcast live in New Zealand. The coverage included the 80 page trial outline, the verdict and sentencing.

On 27 May 2005, Corby was found guilty and sentenced to 20 years' jail. She was also fined 100,000,000 IDR (about A$12,663), with an additional six months if unpaid. The defence and prosecution appealed separately to the High Court with the defence appealing for a retrial and the prosecution appealing for life imprisonment.[33]

[edit] Appeals and clemency

In July 2005, the High Court ruled that the case should be reopened by the district court, allowing the defence to call new witnesses. The onus was on the defence team to call sufficient witnesses to prove that Corby did not place the drugs in her body board bag. One man was named as the owner of the drugs in Corby's bag. He was named as a key witness, but he said that he "knows nothing".[34]

Wikinews has related news: Corby's 20 year sentence reinstated

 

In October 2005, Bali's High Court reduced the sentence to 15 years. Both sides again appealed to Indonesia's Supreme Court. On 19 January 2006, the Indonesian Supreme Court overturned the five-year reduction in her sentence and reinstated the original 20-year jail term. The court ordered that the bodyboard bag and drugs be destroyed, signalling that the case was now closed.[35] The three judge panel rejected a final appeal from Corby, whose lawyers had been seeking a lighter sentence or acquittal.[citation needed]

In August 2006, Corby and her legal team made an extraordinary appeal to the Denpasar District Court. The basis of the appeal was a letter submitted from an Australian government official that said CCTV cameras were operating at Sydney airport on the day she left and indicated that they hoped that the footage (although none has been shown to exist) would show drugs being put into Corby's bag. Corby's lawyers also said that the trial court did not have evidence of actual ownership of the drugs and thus erred in convicting her. The judges agreed to wait ten days to allow for footage to be presented before sending the record to the Supreme Court.[citation needed]

In March 2008, the Indonesian Supreme Court rejected Corby's final appeal against her sentence.[36]

In 2010, a clemency appeal for full remission on humanitarian grounds was made to the Indonesian President which cited her reported deteriorating mental health. In May 2012, the President granted a five-year cut to Corby’s sentence.[37]

Seized photographs

It was reported that a joint South Australian and Queensland police operation had seized photographs of Corby with a man charged with marijuana smuggling after a police search of the alleged dealer's home. It was reported in the media that the photos had been taken prior to Corby's arrest in Bali.[38]

After the reports, Corby's mother, Rosleigh Rose, flew to Adelaide, entered police headquarters and demanded (unsuccessfully) to see the photographs. She alleged that the photographs were taken with Corby in prison in Bali.[39][40]

In January 2006, the man in the photographs, Malcolm McCauley, told Adelaide Now that he had visited Corby in Bali twice in 2005 — but only as a tourist offering support during her drugs trial. McCauley said he first met Corby at her court hearing in May 2005. He said Corby's mother invited him to visit Corby at Kerobokan Prison the following day. Despite claims that the photos had been taken prior to Corby's arrest, McCauley said the photos were taken at an empty fish pond at the prison where the two were permitted by prison guards to sit and talk.[41]

 

Responses

The Corby case generated some anti-Indonesian sentiment amongst some Australians.[citation needed] Mainstream Indonesian media showed minimal interest in the story with the small exception of Bali newspapers.[citation needed] Some small-circulation English language publications such as The Jakarta Post and the Bali Sun gave moderate levels[clarification needed] of coverage.[citation needed]

Several days after the trial verdict, a letter was delivered to the Indonesian embassy in Canberra containing an unknown substance on 31 May 2005. It was later found to be non-toxic and was considered a hoax. The embassy was shut down for decontamination. With negotiations on a prisoner exchange agreement between Australia and Indonesia about to begin, the Australian Government condemned the actions saying if they were related to the Corby case they would not help. The Indonesian foreign ministry described the attack as a sorry and cowardly attempt at intimidating Indonesia, and said Indonesia would not succumb to such a threat.[42]

During the trial, Corby wrote to the Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, saying "...as a father and as a leader, I plead for your help. I did not do this. I beg for justice. I don't know how much longer I can do this. Please bring me home."[43] Of Corby, Howard said: "I feel for her. I understand why there's a lot of public sympathy for her; I would simply say that I hope justice is done and it's a fair and true verdict ... I would ask the rhetorical question: My fellow Australians, if a foreigner were to come to Australia and a foreign government were to start telling us how we should handle [it], we would react very angrily to that."[44] The Australian Labor Party generally supported the government's approach to the case in not wanting to interfere in Indonesia's judicial system,[citation needed] while Australian Greens leader Bob Brown criticised the verdict.[45]

The Australian Government has had talks with the Indonesian Government about a prisoner exchange program, which could include Corby.[46]

Media and public response

There was considerable media interest in and popular discussion of Schapelle Corby's predicament. The conspiracy theory that Australian baggage handlers had placed the drugs in her baggage received some attention. For many months, every minor development in the case was highlighted on prime time TV. For example, a minor "collapse" in the court engendered much erroneous speculation that she was pregnant by her former financial backer, Ron Bakir.[47]

A poll commissioned and published in June 2005 by The Sydney Morning Herald found that opinion was divided whether Corby was guilty but there was a perception that the trial had not been carried out fairly.[48] In Australia, over 100,000 people signed a petition that they believe Corby should be freed. In Indonesia, however, about 40 protesters gathered on 5 June 2005 at the Australian embassy in Jakarta calling for Corby to receive the death sentence and carrying placards with comments such as '"Corby, drug dealer, must die"'.[49]

On 3 March 2008, pictures of what were said to be Corby and her sister Mercedes were shown on A Current Affair, taken after tourists noticed the women having dinner at a bar at Kuta, a town near the Bali airport. Rose denied that it was them.[50]

A documentary concerning Corby's arrest, trial and imprisonment, Ganja Queen, was produced by Janine Hosking and Steve Hosking in 2007. An extended version, Schapelle Corby: The Hidden Truth, was aired on Australian television by the Nine Network in June 2008.[51]

According to opinion polls at the time of Corby's arrest in 2004, most Australians believed her to be innocent.[52] A Nielsen poll conducted in August 2010 found that 10 per cent of Australians believed she was innocent. Most Australians believe Corby should have her 20-year prison sentence reduced.[52]

The Corby case angered many,[who?] who contrasted her prosecution with the lighter sentence given to Indonesian Abu Bakar Bashir, the alleged leader of the terrorist group which carried out the 2002 Bali bombings, killing over 200 people including 88 Australians.[53]

After Corby's conviction, sales of luggage locks increased, and people filmed their luggage as a precautionary effort.[54]

In early 2009, publicity agent Stephen Moriarty was appointed to represent the Corby family. A deal was agreed with New Idea magazine for a series of front cover stories to run throughout the year. The deal is thought to be worth $100,000.[55]

Prison life

Corby's cell block is shared with 85 other women. She spends her time assisting others with personal grooming and making jewellery. During an interview by The Herald Sun on 12 May 2009, Corby expressed her feelings of running a beauty school inside the jail. Her proposal was being considered by jail authorities.[56]

Remissions

Corby has received a total of 27.5 months remission on her original 20-year jail term.[57]

  • August 2006, two months on Indonesia's Independence Day.[58]
  • December 2006, one month at Christmas time.[59]
  • 2007: Corby lost her Independence Day and Christmas remissions when she was caught with a mobile phone.[60] Visiting rules were tightened after an apparent hoax when a bogus tour operator advertised that tourists could have their photo taken with Corby in exchange for money.[61]
  • August 2008, three months on Independence Day.[62]
  • August 2009, four months on Independence Day.[63]
  • August 2010, five months on Independence Day.[57]
  • December 2010, 45 days remission.[64]
  • August 2011, five months remission on Independence Day.[65]
  • August 2012, six months remission on Independence Day.

Treatment for depression

Corby was taken from her prison to a Bali hospital in June 2008 to be treated for depression.[66] In July 2008, Corby was permitted to leave her hospital ward under armed guard to visit a beauty salon located within the hospital grounds to have her hair done and for a pedicure. While she was at the salon, word of her presence got out and, upon leaving the salon, Corby was faced with a large number of reporters. Corby attempted to hide her face as she left the salon and her doctor stated that her condition was "back to zero" and that additional treatment for depression would be needed.[67] On 9 July 2008, she was returned to the prison, ending a stay of two and a half weeks in the hospital.[68] Corby was again taken to the hospital on 22 May 2009 for depression.[69]

In August 2009, an Australian psychiatrist, was paid by New Idea magazine to fly to Bali and assess her condition. His report, which appeared in the magazine and accompanied a deal between the magazine and the Corby family, stated that her mental condition was deteriorating seriously in the prison and urged that she be transferred to an Australian hospital, or at least an Indonesian one.[55] Queensland Premier Anna Bligh supported Corby serving her time in Australia.[70][71]

Related persons

Family background and context

Corby's mother Rosleigh Rose has six children, with Schapelle being the third. Her marriage to Michael Corby produced Mercedes (1974), Michael Junior (1976) and Schapelle (1977). Corby's parents separated around 1979.[72] Michael Corby died in 2008. Rose's second marriage produced Clinton Rose, described by Michael Corby Senior as "the black sheep of the family".[73]

Rose's third marriage, to Tongan-born James Kisina, produced James Sioeli Kisina (1987) and Melenae Kisina (1990).[74] Rose's subsequent partner, Greg Martin, died of cancer in April 2008.[75]

Michael Corby

During the 1970s, Corby's father, Michael Corby, was fined for possession of cannabis.[76] He indicated that he was fined A$400 for possession of two grams of cannabis. However, he stated that the cannabis was not his, saying that "Some girl had it and they busted the whole joint and I had to go along for the ride."[77] He also stated that he had had about a "half-dozen" drink driving convictions, but added, "Who hasn't?"[40]

A quantity of cannabis weighing 5 kg (11 lb) was seized from a property located beside property that Michael Corby owned but did not live at one month prior to his daughter's arrest.[76] Corby's father and the neighbour had also lived in adjacent properties in Middlemount, Queensland, while both worked at the German Creek Mine during the 1990s. A Middlemount resident described them as "pretty friendly".[78]

Michael Corby died of bowel cancer on 18 January 2008.[79]

Clinton Rose

Corby's half-brother, Clinton Rose, has spent time in jail for a range of offences. He was serving a 15 months sentence in Queensland for breaking and entering and fraud. This was his second time in prison.[80] In January 2002, Rose was convicted of drug possession. He had pleaded guilty to what the Southport District Judge, Robert Hall, described as a "campaign of crime". Rose pleaded guilty to a total of 62 charges accumulated over a six-month period.[40]

James Kisina's arrest

Kisina was travelling with Corby when she was arrested in Bali. He had also been carrying the bodyboard bag before the arrest and had appeared in the media to support his sister.[81]

On the same day as the reinstatement of Corby's original sentence, Kisina appeared in a Brisbane magistrates court on drug possession and assault charges.[82] Kisina, along with two friends, invaded the home of a well-known drug dealer, tied up the occupants and assaulted a male occupant before fleeing with a quantity of cannabis and cash.[81] Police stated that the residents were threatened with an iron bar and menaced with a machete.

On 17 January 2006, Queensland Police found cannabis in the home of Schapelle Corby's mother and half-brother.[83] Police stated that the house which Kisina had broken into had been watched by police for some time and that the occupant of the home was a known drug dealer. Kisina's lawyer denied this contention and claimed his client broke into the home believing its occupants may have had information that could assist in Schapelle Corby's sentence appeal.[84] On 8 March 2006, Kisina appeared in the Beenleigh Magistrates Court in relation to the drug-related home invasion and was committed to stand trial after a committal hearing in June.

In Beenleigh District Court, on 13 October 2006, Kisina pleaded guilty to eight charges: two counts of deprivation of liberty, two counts of assault occasioning bodily harm and one count each of producing a dangerous drug, possessing a dangerous drug, possessing an item used in a criminal offence and entering a dwelling. He was sentenced on 16 October 2006 to four years' imprisonment, to be suspended after 10 months. Kisina had spent 9 months on remand. He was released from prison on 18 November 2006.[85]

A senior Queensland Police detective raised a link between Kisina and Corby's arrest in Bali, but later admitted his claims did not meet the "standard of proof" required to take action against Kisina.[86]

Jodi Power's allegations

On 12 February 2007, Jodi Power, a longtime Corby family friend,[87] appeared on current affairs television program Today Tonight during a paid interview filmed in December 2006. Power, with her two children, had lived for months in Bali during the trial to support Schapelle Corby, made allegations that Corby's sister Mercedes had previously asked Power to transport drugs to Bali.[88] Power also alleged that Mercedes had confessed to smuggling compressed cannabis concealed inside her body into Indonesia.[89]

Power claimed that she had seen a vacuum sealed plastic bag similar to the one Schapelle Corby was convicted of using to transport the cannabis to Indonesia at Mercedes Corby's house. She said, "They were getting marijuana out of it. It looked like the same bag."[90] In a further interview, when asked if Schapelle Corby had taken drugs, Power replied, "Yes ... I know she's had ecstasy, speed, cocaine."[91]

Power took three polygraph tests on the program, failing the first but passing the next two. She maintained that she had told the truth about Schapelle Corby but had failed the first polygraph test because she had lied in response to personal questions relating to herself.

Power alleged that the Corby family had lied when stating they had no connections to cannabis. Photographs shown on the program reveal Mercedes smoking what appears to be cannabis.[92] Mercedes Corby has admitted to having "the occasional puff (of marijuana) as a teenager"[90] and indicated that it was her in the photographs shown on Today Tonight, but that they were taken at age 17. Power herself has admitted to marijuana use—at the Corby house.

In response to the statements made by Power, Mercedes Corby was quoted as saying, "Schapelle is in her final appeal and for Jodi to come out and lie is low", stating that the claims can damage Corby's appeal.[93]

Mercedes Corby was interviewed in response to Power's claims on 14 February 2007 on A Current Affair.

Power's mother, Margaret Power, was interviewed on 13 February 2007 edition of Today Tonight. She stated that her daughter was telling the truth and then suggested that Mercedes Corby also take a polygraph test, expressing her belief that she would fail it.[citation needed]

Today Tonight reported that the polygraph expert who conducted the lie detector test on Jodi Power has received numerous death threats.[94] On 30 March 2007, Mercedes Corby filed suit for defamation against Today Tonight and its producers and staff. The matter was scheduled for initial hearing on 15 May 2007.[95]

On 29 May 2008, the Seven Network was found to have defamed Mercedes Corby for implying that she was a drug smuggler and a drug dealer and also that she posed a threat to the safety of Jodi Power. Mercedes Corby's barrister described her to the jury as "an ordinary Australian" subjected to a "trial by media" solely because Schapelle Corby was "locked up in a stinking jail in Bali". The jury upheld the network's defence of truth for stating that Mercedes Corby possessed marijuana.[96]

The case was subsequently settled on undisclosed terms.[97] Corby's mother Rosleigh Rose also received a settlement from the Seven Network as a consequence of the same program.[98]

Autobiography

In November 2006, Corby released an autobiography entitled My Story.[99] The book has sold more than 100,000 copies.[100] Copyrights for the book were assigned by Corby to her sister, Mercedes, and co-author Kathryn Bonella in a move some believe will allow Corby to access proceeds from the sale of the book and avoid Australian laws which restrict convicted criminals from profiting from the proceeds of crime.[101] However, in March 2007, the Queensland Court of Appeal barred the Corby family from spending money generated by the book, pending a claim by the Commonwealth under laws which prevent those who commit crimes from profiting by them.[102] The sum of $267,500 has been frozen pending forfeiture proceedings.[103]

Qantas refused the use of light box displays to advertise the book at its Australian terminals, saying it was their right to refuse advertising they deem inappropriate on their premises.[104]

In July 2007, a Queensland court granted the government the right to interview four individuals in the publishing industry, who were not named, in order to secure evidence.[105] It was also revealed that the proceeds from the book, as well as from a subsequent paid interview, be deposited in the name of Mercedes Corby's Indonesian husband.[106]

In 2008, Corby's autobiography was retitled and published as No More Tomorrows[107] for the international market and was made available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish and Dutch.

 See also


References

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Further reading

 

On Fri, Dec 21, 2012 at 11:07 AM, rosemary tsuji <rosemary.ft12@gmail.com> wrote:

http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2012/s3658867.htm

 

Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Broadcast: 20/12/2012

Reporter: Nick McKenzie

Eight people, including two customs officers and one quarantine official, have been arrested over their involvement in smuggling drugs through Sydney airport

Transcript

CHRIS UHLMANN, PRESENTER: A root-and-branch overhaul of Customs - that's the Government pledge after police revealed the latest arrests in a two-year investigation into drug importation. In all, eight people have been arrested including two Customs officers and a quarantine official. The police operation centred on Sydney Airport where some of the people paid to secure our borders now stand accused of guiding through contraband. Shortly I'll discuss that with Home Affairs Minister Jason Clare.

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470

 

THE discovery of a sophisticated drug smuggling racket allegedly involving Sydney Airport Customs officers has prompted the establishment of a reform board to ensure the service is clean.

Two Customs officers, one officer from the quarantine service and five members of the public have been charged following a joint investigation involving the AFP, Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity (ACLEI).

Read more: http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/sydney-custom-officers-suspected-reports/story-e6frfku9-1226540773470#ixzz2FgAttXMX

http://www.sowetanlive.co.za/news/world/2012/12/21/police-arrest-8-in-sydney-airport-for-drug-smuggling

 

Police arrest 8 in Sydney airport for drug smuggling

Celebrity support ... Indonesian soapie starlet Anisa Tri Hapsari was a public backer of Schapelle during her court cases in 2005. Picture: Channel 7





Gold Coast businessman and discharged bankrupt Ron Bakir established the company Schapelle Corby Pty Ltd,
suggested he would help fund the defence, and later claimed the Corbys owed him money.


Up in smoke ... Channel 7 showed this image in February 2007 allegedly showing Mercedes Corby smoking cannabis with a bong.

Australian drug convicted Schapelle Corby splashing water to a national TV in her cell at Kerobokan Jail in Bali, Tuesday, January 12, 2009. Picture: Bintoro Lukman S




Ind. man with 47 guns arrested after school threat


Associated Press

CEDAR LAKE, Ind. (AP) — A northern Indiana man who allegedly threatened to "kill as many people as he could" at an elementary school near his home was arrested by officers who later found 47 guns and ammunition hidden throughout his home.

Von. I. Meyer, 60, of Cedar Lake, was arrested Saturday after prosecutors filed formal charges of felony intimidation, domestic battery and resisting law enforcement against him. He was being held Sunday without bond at the Lake County Jail, pending an initial hearing on the charges, police said in a statement.

Cedar Lake Police officers were called to Meyer's home early Friday after he allegedly threatened to set his wife on fire once she fell asleep, the statement said.

Meyer also threatened to enter nearby Jane Ball Elementary School "and kill as many people as he could before police could stop him," the statement said. Meyer's home is less than 1,000 feet from the school and linked to it by trails and paths through a wooded area, police said.

Police said in the statement that they notified school officials and boosted security at all area schools Friday — the same day 26 people, including 20 students, were shot and killed at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

On Saturday, officers served warrants at Meyer's home and arrested him. The statement said police had learned that Meyer kept many weapons in his older, two-story home and "is a known member of the Invaders Motorcycle Gang."

Officers searched the home, finding 47 guns and ammunition worth more than $100,000 hidden throughout the home. Many of the weapons were collector's guns.

Cedar Lake is about 45 miles southeast of Chicago.

A dispatcher with Cedar Lake Police said that the police chief was not available for interviews until Monday.

Lake County police spokeswoman Patti Van Til said Sunday that a SWAT team from the department assisted in serving Saturday's warrants.



Jacintha Saldanha's Death: Australian DJs Behind Royal Prank May Face Police Probe

The two Australian DJs who pulled the prank call on the U.K. hospital where Kate Middleton was staying are now in hiding and may soon have to face police after the death of a nurse caught in the hoax.


Kate Middleton and Indian-born mother-of-two Jacintha Saldanha, 46, is thought to have taken her own life. 

 
2Day FM hosts, Michael Christian and Mel Greig.


Questions have been raised by members of the Australian public whether MI5, MI6 and/or their well known murder partners Mossad where involved somehow in the death of  Indian-born mother-of-two Jacintha Saldanha, 46, who the UK media are claiming that she took her own life...
and it is noted that all media reports coming from the United Kingdom only ever call it a suspected suicide... but was it a murder by  MI5, MI6 and/or their well known murder partners Mossad 
to make and example of the nurse who gave out the private information about
 Kate Middleton  who was in a U.K. hospital...



Australian readers of  INLNews.com and awn.bz who have read all about the murder of Thomas Allwood,
 

INL News Under-Cover Investigative Journalist  and co producer with Stephen Carew-Reid and
  the INL News Group of Fringe Shows Have Talent TV Shows Have, on the 21st June, 2012 in  Broxburn Scotland which is about an hour's drive from Edinburgh... and how the Scottish Lothian Borders Police and the Scottish Prosecution known in Scotland  as the Procurator Fiscal's Office  and the world's media are clearly not looking closely enough the evidence brought out at the recent trial of Kyle Montgomery heard from the 19th November to the 26th November 2012 in Scotland's High Court in Livingston, who had been charged by the Scottish Lothian Borders Police for the murder of Thomas Allwood ..the evidence clearly indicates strongly that Thomas Allwood was not murdered by Kyle Montgomery who locals in Broxburn say is a well known local mentally depressed Scitzophrenic  at around 2.20am on the 21st July, 2012 ... as implied by his father John Montgomery in his  sworn evidence at by Kyle Montgomery's  trial... when the much more believable independent evidence from two next door neighbours who have a common wall with John Montgomery's house in Galloway Cresent, Broxburn was produced at the trial that say they both heard and felt an enormous bang on their bedroom wall that felt like their bedroom wall was about to cave in...coming from John Montgomery's house at about 3.15 am on the 21st June, 2012.... which was the loudest bang that they had ever heard coming from John Montgomery's house which they stated was like living next door to a pub with drinking, shouting, arguing and fighting went on all the time all hours of the day and night... they said in evidence that before the enormous bang there was loud shouting, screaming, arguing and fighting coming from John Montgomery's house... however as soon as the enormous bang happened that felt like their bedroom wall was about to cave in... there was complete silence coming from John Montgomery's house... and then they heard the back door quietly open and close ... which was first time that that door was ever opened and close without being slammed for the last couple of years since they lived next door to John Montgomery's house..... John Montgomery had given sworn evidence at his sons trial that after his son grabbed a bread knife from his kitchen draw and ran out the back door after Thomas Allwood, who was unarmed when he left the house a few minutes before, and that his son Kyle Montgomery came back into the house a few minutes later with blood on the bread knife admitting to his Dad, John Montgomery, that he had just done something bad... John Montgomery then said he took to bread knife with blood on it from his Son, Kyle Montgomery and calmly placed it back into the draw still with the blook on it... then Kyle Montgomery left the house and John Montgomery calmly had another drink and then fell asleep on the lounge and did not wake up until the police turned up and arrested him at about 5 am on the 21st June, 2012... another person who was at John Montgomery's house that early morning on the 21st June, 2012 was a lady known as Maggie whose name is Margaret Shedden (Galloway being her birth name- a very well connected and influential family in Scotland with a famous politician George Galloway and a Freemason Scottish Police Officer Hugh Galloway  of 7 Tower Place Johnstone Renfrewshire Renfrewshire 791 being member of the family)...John Montgomery's family also are well connnected and respected in Scotland with war heros in the family and a Freemason Police Officer Alexander Montgomery  51 Parkhead Rd Glen Village by Falkirk Stirlingshire 484

also a member of the Montgomery Family.... so it does not seem believable that John Montgomery would not have been awake and/or woken up with the enormous bang coming from his house at about 3.15 that the next door neighbours say was the loudest bang they had ever heard from John Montgomery's house and felt like their bedroom wall was going to cave in... so this clearly indicates along with other evidence that John Montgomery had lied on the witness stand and in doing so has implicated his Kyle Montgomery as the person who was likely to have made a fatal six inch stab wound in the right chest of Thomas Allwood through cloths with a bread knife that would have cerated edge and no sharp point for stabbing anyone through clothing which is only suitable for a sawing acting rather that a stabbing action...however at the same time implicating Kyle Montgomery as the likely person who made the fatal six inch stab wound in Thomas Allwood's right chest that cut through a main archery causing the death of Thomas Allwood... John Montgomery gave evidence which is believed by the jury could get his son off the murder charge his Son Kyle Montgomery was facing and to try and convince the jury that his son

 Kyle Montgomery was only guilty of culperable homicide... which is like an accident homicide crime that resulted in the death of a person without intent in a drunken fight that got out of hand ... even though the bar maid gave evidence at the trial that Thomas Allwood was only drinking soft drinks that night... and Kyle Montgomery had been alcohol drinking heavily since about 1pm on the 20th June, 2012.....and so was his father John Montgomery drinking alcohol heavily since at least 8pm and likely most of the day since he received his government benefit cheque  that day... in fact the jury based mainly on his father's evidence... very conveniently  for all those Scottish Government officials  involved in the investigation into the murder of Thomas Allwood.... and others...  found Kyle Montgomery not guilty of the murder of Thomas Allwood and found Kyle Montgomery guilty of the lesser charge of Culperable homicide (accidental death) of Thomas Allwood....now the evidence that came out at the trial of Kyle Montgomery seems to clearly indicate that there were at least four people... maybe more in the house of Kyle Montgomery from 10pm on the 2oth June, 2012 and about 3.30 am on the 21st June, 2012... and in fact at least voices coming from John Montgomery's house that night and early morning were heard by the next door neighbours ....these seem to include...Thomas Allwood, John Montgomery, Kyle Montgomery and Margaret Shedden (Galloway being her birth name) and maybe others who did not want to make themselves known and kept reasonable quiet while at John Montgomery's house... the evidence seems to clearly indicate that at 2am to 2.30 am on the 21st June, 2012 when John Montgomery states was the time frame when his son Kyle Montgomery was meant to have gone out the back door and meant to have stabbed Thomas Allwood with a bread knife and came back with blood on the knife admitting he has just done something bad...making it fairly obvious to the at least three people left at the house which at the least included John Montgomery, Kyle Montgomery and Margaret Shedden (Galloway being her birth name)... that Kyle Montgomery had just stabbed Tomas Allwood outside in the back yard and/or a nearby street .. and that Thomas Allwood would be likely have been badly hurt from a stab wound and would have needed urgent medical attention.... regardless if  was considered that stabbing of Thomas Allwood by Kyle Montgomery deliberate and/or in self defense... either way it would have been clear to these three people and anyone else that may have been at John Montgomery's house at that time, that they should call an ambulance and the police immediately to make sure that Thomas Allwood obtained urgent medical attention which if had been done then could well have saved the life of Thomas Allwood... sure the fact that neither of these people bothered to ring the police and/or an ambulance to try and get urgent help for Thomas Allwood at around 2.20-2.30 am...if what John Montgomery says id true.... they all should be charged with being responsible for the murder and/or death of Thomas Allwood as they seemed to just let him die on the street or the back yard.. and under Australian law could well be charged as accessories after the fact and at least charged with some serious charge that resulted in the death of Thomas Allwood... very similar to walking away from a serious car accident where it is clear someone had been seriously hurt and not calling the police and/or an ambulance....

Now... when one looks at the evidence of the two next door neighbours that say they both heard and felt an enormous bang on their bedroom wall that felt like their bedroom wall was about to cave in...coming from John Montgomery's house at about 3.15 am on the 21st June, 2012.... which was the loudest bang that they had ever heard coming from John Montgomery's house... then the more believable  truth is that at about 3.15 am Thomas Allwood was king hit by someone and/or some people with either a fist or fists and/or a hard object that was enough to knock out Thomas Allwood.. then the body of Thomas Allwood was carried outside while Thomas Allwood was still unconscious ...then someone stabbed Thomas Allwood... not with a bread knife but a sharp pen knife which made the deep six inch stab wound into the right chest of Thomas Allwood that cut a main archery so that Thomas Allwood was never wake up and would bleed to death... and then quietly they carried Thomas Allwood body to the next streets Clarkson and Pyothall Roads and quietly left the body  there at about 3.30 am where the body was found at about 4.45 am by three boys walking past at that time...the neighbour that had a window open looking right over where Thomas Allwood's body was found says you can hear a pin drop in her street and there was not one sound or noise in her street that early morning... and the only noise that was heard was the sound of the police at about 5am looking at the body and the murder scene... so it is clear that there was not fighting in her street that morning at 2.00-4.00 am where the body was found that morning and so screaming or cries for help from Thomas Allwood in her street that morning at 2.00-4.00 am where the body was found that morning.. why?... because Thomas Allwood was obviously carried and left there and was already unconscious having been knocked out before he was stabbed with the six inch stab wound and then stabbed and then carried to to the next streets Clarkson and Pyothall Roads and quietly left there... private investigators employed by friends and family of Thomas Allwood have a strong belief that the evidence clearly suggests that Thomas Allwood was not murdered and/or even killed by Kyle Montgomery with a bread knife but was murdered by a contract killer well trained to know where and how to stab a person with one six inch stab wound with a very sharp and pointed pen knife which is designed to be able to kill some with just one stab wound.... the people in the world that are well known to be able to know how to murder someone with just one stab wound are agents and/or assets of MI5, MI6 and Mossad... and it is well known they work as agents for the state of the United Kingdom and the UK Prime Minister's Office to carry out murders of people like Thomas Allwood who was an undercover INL News Investigative Journalist who was working on a story to expose state of the United Kingdom and the UK Prime Minister, David Cameron and their Treasury Solicitors and Barristers for knowing being involved with having a false and fraudulent UK Border Agency document and having that false and fraudulent document presented to the High Court of Justice to stop Thomas Allwood from successfully claiming £500 million in damages claim for the wrongful arrest of USA Comedian Ronnie Prouty by the UK Border Agency on the 27th April, 2011 as a favour for the powerful Rupert and James Murdoch and their all powerful media group News Corporation as a way of commercially sabotaging the planned filming of the pilot fo the Fringe Shows Have Talent TV Show in Edinburgh in April- May 2011 being co-produced by Thomas Allwood, Stephen Carew-Reid (the author of the well known bboks The Triumph of Truth -Who Is Watching the Watchers? and the original founder of the INL News Group-formerly known as the Australian Weekend News Publishing Group) and the INL News Group to create an international showcase of talented entertainers that perform at the 60 year old Edinburgh Fringe Festival each year... which has become the biggest arts festival in the world with over 3,000 Fringe shows being performed during August each year in Edinburgh....

Below is some the transcripts of what was said at a court hearing in London's High Court of Justice heard on the 24th July, 2012 where applications were originally listed to be heard by Thomas Allwood prior to his murder on the 21st June, 2012 in Broxburn, Scotland for criminal contempt applications to be heard against  David Cameron the UK Prime Minister, George Osborne, the UK Chancellor, the UK Government, the UK Border Agency and their treasury solicitors  for knowingly having prepared a false and fraudulent UK Border Agency document and presenting such false and fraudulent UK Border Agency document to the High Court of Justice to try to stop Thomas Allwood from suing David Cameron the UK Prime Minister, George Osborne, the UK Chancellor, the UK Government, the UK Border Agency for £500 million in damages caused to the filming of the Fringe Shows Have Talent TV Show by the wrongful arrest of USA Comedian Ronnie Prouty on the 27th April, 2012 at Heathrow Airport as favour David Cameron and George Osborne's good friends at the time...Rupert and James Murdoch and their all powerful multi- billion media group known as News Corporation..the murder of Thomas Allwood on the 21st June, 2012 meant that would stop Thomas Allwood continuing with his criminl contempt applications against suing David Cameron the UK Prime Minister, George Osborne, the UK Chancellor, the UK Government, the UK Border Agency and their treasury solicitors and well as other criminal contempt applications taken out against barristers and solicitors involving another legal fight Thomas Allwood and his de-facto partner Valerie Butler where involved with at the High Court of Justice in their fight over their 25 acre family farm known as Haywicks Farm, Haywicks Lane, Hardwicke, Gloucester in the UK... where Thomas Allwood alleged that powerful and well connected s Freemason solicitors and barrister in Gloucester that Thomas Allwood called the Gloucestershire Legal Mafia (GLM) were involved with the preparing a false will in the name of Valerie Butler's father Herbert Butler and presenting that false will for a wrongful grant of probate so that partners of the Gloucestershire Legal Mafia (GLM) could wrongly obtain the title deed of their 25 acre family farm known as Haywicks Farm, Haywicks Lane, Hardwicke, Gloucester in the UK which they had planned to turn into a multi-million luxury real estate development ... Thomas Allwood also had a firm belief and was not scared to openly say...that Valerie Butler's father Herbert Butler was also murdered as part of the conspiracy he alleged to defraud his de-facto partner Valerie Butler of her rightful ownership of Haywicks Farm..

Some of the reasons why the Private Investigation Team employed by friends and family of the late Thomas Allwood to investigate who and why Thomas Allwood was murdered on the 21st June. 2012 in Broxburn, Scotland strongly believe that the powerful agents of the State of the United Kingdom such as MI5, MI6 and/or Mossad and/or some other professional contract murdered was and/or were involved in the murder of Thomas Allwood on the 21st June, 2012 include:

1. The Scottish Lothian Borders Police and the Scottish Prosecution known in Scotland  as the Procurator Fiscal's Office  and the world's media are clearly not looking closely enough the evidence brought out at the recent trial of Kyle Montgomery heard from the 19th November to the 26th November 2012 in Scotland's High Court in Livingston, who had been charged by the Scottish Lothian Borders Police for the murder of Thomas Allwood ... seem to be risking their worldwide good  reputation by quite openly protecting those at the house of John Montgomery on the evening of the 20th June, 2012 and the early morning of the 21st June, 2012 who according to the evidence of John Montgomery, and including John Montgomery knew that Thomas Allwood was likely badly wounded from a stab wound at about 2.20 am and did niot ring the police of an ambulance and simply went to sleep and left Thomas Allwood to die on the road just a street away from John Montgomery's house

2.  Why is there a complete worldwide media block out.. except for one lone Scottish Journalist Vic Roderick who was the only journalist to cover the trial... who has now been silenced by the world mainstream  media with what is called a "D Notice" on the reporting of the murder/death of Thomas Allwood who was an undercover INL News Investigative Journalist, Poet and TV Shows producer of the Fringe Shows have Talent TV Show...

3. Why is the a mentally sick person such as Kyle Montgomery whom the locals say is a well known Scitzophrenic which is capable to believing and/or repeating any story he is told is the truth.. being made a patsy for the death of Thomas Allwood.. .at about 2.20 am when  the evidence clearly indicates that Thomas Allwood was knocked unconscious in the house of John Montghomery at about 3.15 am on the 21st June, 2012 and then carried out of the house and then stabbed with a six inch wound in the right chest cutting a main archery nd then carried to be let to die on Clarkson and Pyothall Road, Broxburn

With the more believable  truth is that at about 3.15 am Thomas Allwood was king hit by someone and/or some people with either a fist or fists and/or a hard object that was enough to knock out Thomas Allwood.. then the body of Thomas Allwood was carried outside while Thomas Allwood was still unconscious ...then someone stabbed Thomas Allwood... not with a bread knife but a sharp pen knife which made the deep six inch stab wound into the right chest of Thomas Allwood that cut a main archery so that Thomas Allwood was never wake up and would bleed to death... and then quietly they carried Thomas Allwood body to the next streets Clarkson and Pyothall Roads and quietly left the body  there at about 3.30 am where the body was found at about 4.45 am by three boys walking past at that time...the neighbour that had a window open looking right over where Thomas Allwood's body was found says you can hear a pin drop in her street and there was not one sound or noise in her street that early morning... and the only noise that was heard was the sound of the police at about 5am looking at the body and the murder scene...

so it is clear that there was not fighting in her street that morning at 2.00-4.00 am where the body was found that morning and so screaming or cries for help from Thomas Allwood in her street that morning at 2.00-4.00 am where the body was found that morning.. why?... because Thomas Allwood was obviously carried and left there and was already unconscious having been knocked out before he was stabbed with the six inch stab wound and then stabbed and then carried to to the next streets Clarkson and Pyothall Roads and quietly left there... private investigators employed by friends and family of Thomas Allwood have a strong belief that the evidence clearly suggests that Thomas Allwood was not murdered and/or even killed by Kyle Montgomery with a bread knife but was murdered by a contract killer well trained to know where and how to stab a person with one six inch stab wound with a very sharp and pointed pen knife which is designed to be able to kill some with just one stab wound.... the people in the world that are well known to be able to know how to murder someone with just one stab wound are agents and/or assets of MI5, MI6 and Mossad...

Part of the transcripts of hearing before Justice Vos at High Court of Justice in London on the 24th July, 2012

Miss Love: The Border Agency matter.

Mr Justice Vos: I know, but I do not have any of the core papers in the Border Agency matter. What is the action no?

Miss Love: My Lord, it is HC11C04395

Mr Justice Vos: You see that is why, I have been through all the cases, and I do not have any papers in that except your letter and the correspondence.

Miss Love: Right

Mr Justice Vos: If I just pick it up. I have this much stuff on the UKBA, but it really is just your letter and a lot of historical material, and material concerning the famous INL News Group.

Miss Love: Mr Lord, we can remedy that situation _ I am sure your Lordship does not particularily want further copies of the correspondence, but certainly of the original claim form_

Mr Justice Vos: That is what I would like. So there was an application, was there, in that matter that was returnable today?

Miss Love: There was....

Mr Justice Vos: To do what?

Miss Love: If I could just start the procedural history, the claim by Mr Carew-Reid, which in essense was apparently a claim for damages in respect of treatment by the UK Border Agency of an individual known as Mr Prouty was issued on 9th December, 2011...

Page 6:

Miss Love: as you will see, it appears to be some hybrid of striking out and appealing the order of Master Bowles, an application for the cross-examination of myself and Mr Spanton, who was acting Treasury Solicitor and a generalised, if I might respectfully say so, rather difficult to grasp criminal contempt application..

Mr Justice Vos: It is another criminal contempt

Page 8:

Mr Geis: But the point was that Mr Prouty was refused entry into the UK and I've seen the forms that Mr Carew-Reid had, and there was one form which did not have a signature on. Now, I think this does cause for a bit of alarm and I think you should carefully consider this point and. if necessary, make an adjournment.

Mr Justice Vos: Thank you, Mr Gies...

Miss Lean: My Lord may have seen in the more recent correspondence from Mr Reid and INL that clearly they have concerns that this was a murder effected by MI5 or Mossad and/or other agents of the State, but as  far as we are aware it is being dealt with as a criminal murder charge (murder of Thomas Allwood)

Mr Justice Voss: Yes, and who was Mr Allwood- apart from being a party to litigation, did he occupy some important position?....

Miss Lean: My Lord, for completeness, I should mention I am afraid among the many letters and emails from members of the INL News Group I do not have that one. I think I have seen some reference in the correspondence to Mr Allwood being involved with the INL News Group in some capacity so that may be the...

Mr Justice Voss: Right, but he was a associate and friend of Mr Carew-Reid, that is what it comes to?.... Right, thank you. Well Mr Carew-Reid himself says he was a friend of Mr Carew-Reid's side, I do not think we need to go further than that.....

Jacintha Saldanha's Death: Australian DJs Behind Royal Prank May Face Police Probe

The two Australian DJs who pulled the prank call on the U.K. hospital where Kate Middleton was staying are now in hiding and may soon have to face police after the death of a nurse caught in the hoax.

This morning, there are also new questions about whether DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian, radio shock jocks at Sydney's 2Day FM broke laws after they recorded the private conversation when they pretended to be Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles.

British police have also contacted Australian police about a possible probe into the prank call, The Associated Press reported Sunday.

Rhys Holleran, CEO of Southern Cross Austereo, the parent company of Sydney's 2Day FM radio station said no laws were broken. The prank had been cleared by the Australian radio station's lawyers. Holleran said the DJs followed the company's procedures before broadcasting the call. "I think the more important question here is that we're very confident that we haven't done anything illegal. Our main concern at this point in time is what has happened is incredibly tragic and we're deeply saddened and we're incredibly affected by that," Holleran said Saturday. The hoax has caused public outcry after the death of a nurse, Jacintha Saldanha, who connected the pair to the Duchess' room.

Saldanha was found dead Friday morning after police were called to an address near the hospital to "reports of a woman found unconscious," according to a statement from Scotland Yard. Circumstances of her death are still being investigated, but are not suspicious at this stage, authorities said earlier. Lord Glenarthur, the chairman of King Edward VII's Hospital, the U.K. hospital where the Duchess of Cambridge was receiving treatment, condemned the prank Saturday in a letter to the Max Moore-Wilton, chairman of Southern Cross Austereo, the Australian radio station's parent company.

Glenarthur said the prank humiliated "two dedicated and caring nurses," and the consequences were "tragic beyond words," The Associated Press reported. Max Moore-Wilton, the chairman of Southern Cross Austereo, said in a letter to Lord Glenarthur Sunday that the company is reviewing the station's broadcast policies, the AP reported. "I can assure you we are taking immediate action and reviewing the broadcast and processes involved," Moore-Wilton said in the letter. "As we have said in our own statements on the matter, the outcome was unforeseeable and very regrettable." Saldanha came to England from India nine years ago, with her husband and two children. On Facebook, her 14-year-old daughter wrote this weekend, simply: "I miss you, I loveeee you."

Saldanha worked as a nurse at King Edward VII private hospital for four years. Her family lives 100 miles away in Bristol, but while on shift she slept in a residence for nurses. With no receptionist on duty overnight she answered the prank call and put it through. The hospital called her a "first-class nurse" and "a well-respected and popular member of the staff" and extended "deepest sympathies" to family and friends, saying that "everyone is shocked" at this "tragic event."

The duchess spent three days at the hospital undergoing treatment for hyperemesis gravidarum, severe or debilitating nausea and vomiting. She was released from the hospital Thursday morning. The hospital apologized for the mistake.

A man who stabbed a photographer to death in a drunken street brawl was caught after police found a blood-stained knife in a cutlery drawer.

http://local.stv.tv/edinburgh/203156-killer-who-stabbed-man-to-death-had-bloody-knife-in-cutlery-drawer/


A man who stabbed a photographer to death in a drunken street brawl was caught after police found a blood-stained knife in a cutlery drawer.

Kyle Montgomery, 24, denied murdering Thomas Allwood after a late-night drinking session but was found guilty of culpable homicide by a jury on Wednesday.

Jurors at the High Court in Livingston took four and a half hours to return a guilty verdict on the lesser charge.

Sentence on the first-time offender, of Winchburgh, West Lothian, was deferred until December 20 for background reports.

Mr Allwood, a 56-year-old photographer who worked for the Australian-based INL News Group, was stabbed in the chest during an incident on June 21.

Giving evidence in his own defence, Montgomery claimed he grabbed the knife to frighten Mr Allwood after being attacked by him at a house in Broxburn, West Lothian.

He said the killing was an accident and that he did not know the blade had sliced through the victim's chest and severed a major artery as he struggled with the victim.

Police who were called to the scene followed a trail of blood from Mr Allwood's body to Montgomery's father’s home. They found the knife, still stained with blood, in a cutlery drawer.

Montgomery was detained as he returned to the house from a nearby shop.

Mr Allwood was a photographer with the Australian-based INL News Group. Although he was born in Scotland, his family emigrated when he was a child and he spent most of his live in Australia.


http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/murder-trial-told-dna-of-victim-1453803

Murder trial told DNA of victim and alleged killer found on kitchen knife

24 Nov 2012 00:01

THE knife was found in the kitchen of the dad of Kyle Montgomery, who denies murdering Thomas Allwood.

THE DNA of a murder victim and his alleged killer were found on a kitchen knife, a court heard yesterday.

The High Court in Livingston was told the odds of the DNA matching anyone other than the deceased, Thomas Allwood, were 28,600,000-1.

Blood samples lifted from the blade were a billion-to-one match for 24-year-old Kyle Montgomery, who denies murdering Thomas in Broxburn on June 21.

The knife was found in Montgomery’s dad’s kitchen.

Forensic scientist Kirsty McTurk told the jury: “The findings are consistent with Kyle Montgomery having assaulted Thomas Allwood.”

The trial was adjourned until Monday.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/scottish-news/top-stories/man-caused-stab-death-by-accident-1-2664172


Man ‘caused stab death by accident’

Published on Wednesday 28 November 2012






A MAN accused of murdering an Australian journalist has claimed he must have stabbed the victim to death by accident.

Kyle Montgomery admitted that he armed himself with a kitchen knife and squared up to 56-year-old Thomas Graham Allwood.

He claimed in evidence at the High Court in Livingston that the blade was for his own “protection” and he had no intention of using it.

After being attacked twice by the victim, he said he just wanted to “scare him off” with the knife.

He struggled with Mr Allwood, who was armed with a metal pole or iron bar, but said he was unaware of inflicting the fatal blow which severed the main artery above his heart.

Montgomery, 24, from Winchburgh, West Lothian, denies murdering Mr Allwood in Broxburn on June 21.

In his closing speech yesterday, advocate depute Martin Macari asked the jury to convict Montgomery of murder. He said: “Whatever happened between those men, Kyle Montgomery had returned to the house to get a weapon.”

Derek Ogg QC, defending, said: “If he didn’t realise he’d caused that injury, he could not and did not have any criminal intent towards Mr Allwood.”

Judge Lord Doherty was due to deliver his charge to the jury this morning.

Comment from INL News Reader: Mary Gleeson

I have read all the published stories on the trial of Kyle Montgomery who was charged with the murder of INL Journalist Thomas Allwood, and all other previous media reports I could find on the web since Thomas Allwood was first reported on the BBC website on the 22nd June 2012 that he had been murdered in Broxburn, Scotland and that Kyle Montgomery was charged with Willfull murder of Thomas Allwood... and I have come to the conclusion that the way the evidence has presented at the trial of Kyle Montgomery and what evidence has been given by the witnesses the dots simply do not add up... and the trial has created more questions than answers..... when it seems clear that this Maggie lady, described as a female friend of Thomas Allwood and tJohn Montgomery, the father of the accused ..according to John Montgomery's evidence were in the house when Kyle Montgomery deliberately went outside to chase after Thomas Allwood with a bread knife... rather than jut locking lall the doors and windows of his father's house t make sure Thomas Allwood can not get back into their house....because they were meant to be in fear of him... then ring the police and say that Thomas Allwood was threatening Kyle Montgomery and had attacked Kyle Montgomery in John Montgomery's house ( all according the John Montgomery) and was continuing to bang on their door ... then the police would have come around immediately and arrested Thomas Allwood... who would then have spent the night in the police lock up.... where he would have woken up the next morning alive and be able to explain to a magistrate and/or the police what happened that night... no it all did not happen that way... John and Kyle Montgomery both claim that having removed Thomas Allwood from John Montgomery's house.... and expecting Thomas Allwood to have been unarmed....deliberately ran out of the back door of the house to the back garden for the purpose to chase Thomas Allwood with a bread knife in his hand.... instead of staying safe in his dads house and ringing the police.... now I read in the above article the unbelievable claim by Kyle Montgomery that Thomas Allwood   "
was armed with a metal pole or iron bar" and thus was acting in self defence after delieberately going outside to look for Thomas Allwood to attack him with a knife... other purpose  would he have grabbed the knife and run outside with it for... it can only be to stab Thomas Allwood who he thought was unarmed... now Kyle Montgomery seems on the evidence had been drinking heavily since bout 1pm at his dads house and would have been very drunk by 2am the next morning and Thomas Allwood looks like a big man and Kyle Montgomery looks like a small thin boy... and thus could easily be over powered by Thomas Allwood even without Thomas Allwood have a metal pole or an iron bar to defend himself with from a vicious knife attack... we also heard from John Montgomery who said that Thomas Allwood had his son Kyle Montgomery pinned on the floor with his foot on his chest... which shows that Thomas Allwood had no problem in over powering Kyle Montgomery without any weapon of any sort.... then se have the unbelievable story of John Montgomery that at the same time the Thomas Allwood had his son Kyle Montgomery pinned to the floor by having his foot on his chest... Thomas Allwood was meant to have his hands around Kyle Montgomery's throat trying to strangle Kyle Montgomery... this is simply physically impossible for a tall big man to do at the same time as standing up with his foot on the person's chest....it is simply also unbelievable that that Thomas Allwood was armed outside with a metal pole or iron bar because if that was the case having already being told by John Montgomery that Thomas Allwood had no problem about being able to overpower Kyle Montgomery without any weapon, the how the hell is Kyle Montgomery going to be able fatally stab Thomas Allwood with just one six inch stab wound with a bread knife ( bread knife do not have pointy tips and just a cerated edge for a sawing action for bread or meat but not a stapping action) through clothing knowing the exact place to stab (single handed) a big man to kil him with one stab wound in the front chest ( not in the back)  who is well aware that of the identity of the attacked and that the attcked is likely to attack because of a previous disagreement in the house.... and Thomas Allwood is also now armed with a metal pole or an iron bar.... which in one swing would have knocked small frail drunk Kyle Montgomery for six ... there is no way Kyle Montgomery is going to have any chance of being able to make that one fatal stab wound all by himself.... no normal jury is going to beleive this story.. so there seems no doubt what ever happened that morning Thomas Allwood must have been unarmed and Kyle Montgomery would have have to hav had some helpers... if it was really Kyle Montgomery that handed the fatal stab wound on Thomas Allwood...at about 2.15 according to the timing given by his father John Montgomery... then John and Kyle Montgomery and the lasy Maggie have to explain what the enmormous bang against the wall of the next door neighbours bedroom that cam from John Montgomery's house at about 3.5 to 3.15 am that felt to them that their bedroom wall was abourt to cave in... then after there being constant arguing, shouting and fighting etc before this enormous bang at about 3.05 to 3.15 am on the 21st June 2012.. everything from John Montgomery's house suddenly went quiet and for the first tikme ever... the back door was opened and wht and the door was not slammed which indicated clearly that someone or some people went out the door of John Montgomery's very silently and quietly... and the only logical deduction as to what the enormous bang against the wall was just before that nearly push the wall in from John Montgomery's side... was someone king hitting Thomas Allwood with a fist or a heavy object.. making him unconscious....then carrying Thomas Allwood out the door while he was unconscious... then may be making soem more bruses on his boy and then the one fatal stab wound ... all while he was unconscious.... and then carrying the body of Thomas Allwood quietly to where he was found on Clarkson/Pyothall Roads... at about 4.45 am by passers by... 
However if one is to discount that theory and ignore the enormosu bang at 3.05 to 3.15 am coming from John Montgomery's house... and just still to what John Montgomery sated on the witness stand under oath.. that his sone Kyle Montgomery grabbed a bread knife from the kitchen draw and ran out the back door( obviously to go to try and stab Thomas Allwood or at least chase after himw ith the knife) then coming back ten minutes later with blod on the knife and admitting he had done something bad... and John Montgomery not asking any more questions and calmly oputting the knife woth the blood on it back into the draw... having one more drink,,, the son leave the house and he falls asleep on the lounge...and is woken uop at about 5am by the police arresting him... so why didn't John Montgomery, Kyle Montgomery and/or Maggie ring the police and/or an ambulance at about 2.20 am which would haved saved the life of Thomas Allwood..

http://www.lbp.police.uk/information/latest_news/news_archives/2012/november_2012/man_convicted_of_thomas_allwoo.aspx

Man convicted of Thomas Allwood death

28 November 2012 15:59



A man who stabbed his victim in the chest, resulting in his death has today been convicted.

At the High Court in Livingston today, Kyle Montgomery was found guilty of culpable homicide after killing 56-year-old Thomas Graham Allwood during a disturbance in Broxburn in the early hours of Thursday 21st June.

Members of the public found Mr Allwood's body in Clarkson Road and alerted police who launched a major investigation to identify his killer.

Detectives quickly traced and arrested Montgomery and charged him in connection Mr Allwood's death.

The 24-year-old is due to be sentenced on Thursday 20th December at Edinburgh High Court.

Detective Inspector Stuart Houston, who led the investigation said: "It is my sincere hope, that following today's verdict Mr Allwood's family can begin to move on with their lives and put this horrendous ordeal behind them.

"I would also like to thank the members of the community who came forward and assisted with this investigation.

"Lothian and Borders Police are committed to tackling violent crime and by working closely with our partners at the Crown Office, ensure that offences of this nature are investigated thoroughly and those responsible are removed from our communities."


Thomas Allwood was born in Scotland but spent most of his life in Australia

First offender Kyle Montgomery will be sentenced next month for the killing



http://www.s1broxburn.com/news/broxburn-killer-montgomery-convicted--1.html


Broxburn killer Montgomery convicted

by Rebecca GarrettWednesday, 28 November 2012

The monster who stabbed Thomas Graham Allwood in the chest in Broxburn, which resulted in his death, has been convicted.

Kyle Montgomery was found guilty of culpable homicide the High Court in Livingston. He killed 56-year-old Allwood during a disturbance in the early hours of Thursday, June 21.

Members of the public found Mr Allwood's body in the Clarkson Road/Pyothall Road area and alerted police. A major investigation to identify his killer was launched.

Detectives quickly traced and arrested Montgomery and charged him in connection Mr Allwood's death

The 24-year-old is due to be sentenced on Thursday, December 20 at Edinburgh High Court.

Detective Inspector Stuart Houston, who led the investigation, said: "It is my sincere hope, that following today's verdict Mr Allwood's family can begin to move on with their lives and put this horrendous ordeal behind them.

"I would also like to thank the members of the community who came forward and assisted with this investigation.

"Lothian and Borders Police are committed to tackling violent crime and by working closely with our partners at the Crown Office, ensure that offences of this nature are investigated thoroughly and those responsible are removed from our communities."



http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-20526345

28 November 2012


Kyle Montgomery found guilty of killing journalist Thomas Allwood

A man who stabbed a journalist to death in West Lothian has been convicted of culpable homicide.

Kyle Montgomery, from Winchburgh, denied murdering 56-year-old Thomas Allwood in Broxburn in June.

A jury at the High Court in Livingston took four-and-a-half hours to find the 24-year-old guilty of the lesser charge.

Sentence was deferred until 20 December at the High Court in Edinburgh for background reports.

Montgomery had said he grabbed a knife to scare off Mr Allwood after claiming he was attacked by him at a house in Broxburn.

He said the killing was an accident and that he did not know the blade had sliced through the victim's chest and severed a major artery during the struggle.

After the attack, Mr Allwood, who was a journalist with the Australian-based INL News Group, was found on Clarkson Road by members of the public.

Police who were called to the scene followed a trail of blood from his body to Montgomery's father house.

They found the knife, still bloodstained, in a cutlery drawer. Montgomery was detained as he returned to the house from a nearby shop.

Mr Allwood was born in Scotland but his family emigrated to Australia when he was a baby and he spent most of his life there.

He was involved in producing a TV show called Fringe Shows Have Talent, to showcase entertainers performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Det Insp Stuart Houston, who led the Lothian and Borders Police investigation, said: "It is my sincere hope, that following today's verdict Mr Allwood's family can begin to move on with their lives and put this horrendous ordeal behind them.

"I would also like to thank the members of the community who came forward and assisted with this investigation.

"Lothian and Borders Police are committed to tackling violent crime and by working closely with our partners at the Crown Office, ensure that offences of this nature are investigated thoroughly and those responsible are removed from our communities."



http://local.stv.tv/edinburgh/203156-killer-who-stabbed-man-to-death-had-bloody-knife-in-cutlery-drawer/


Killer who stabbed man to death had bloody knife in cutlery drawer

STV 28 November 2012 16:45 GMT








Associated Press/Carolyn Kaster, File - FILE - In this Nov. 16, 2012, file photo, President Barack Obama acknowledges House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio while speaking to reporters in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, as he hosted a meeting of the bipartisan, bicameral leadership of Congress to discuss the deficit and economy. Admnistration officials say President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met Sunda, Dec. 9, 2012, at the White House to discuss the ongoing negotiations over the impeding "fiscal cliff." Spokesmen for both Obama and Boehner said the two men agreed to not release details of the conversation, but emphasized that the lines of communication remain open. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

Stock market is a wild card in fiscal cliff talks

By By CHARLES BABINGTON | Associated Press 

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress and the White House can significantly soften the initial impact of the "fiscal cliff" even if they fail to reach a compromise by Dec. 31. One thing they cannot control, however, is the financial markets' reaction, which possibly could be a panicky sell-off that triggers economic reversals worldwide.

The stock market's unpredictability is perhaps the biggest wild card in the political showdown over the fiscal cliff.

President Barack Obama's re-election gives him a strong negotiating hand, as Republicans are increasingly acknowledging. And some Democrats are willing to let the Dec. 31 deadline pass, because a rash of broad-based tax hikes would pressure Republicans to give more ground in renewed deficit-reduction negotiations.

A chief fear for Obama's supporters, however, is that Wall Street would be so disgusted or dismayed that stocks would plummet before lawmakers could prove their newfound willingness to mitigate the fiscal cliff's harshest measures, including deep, across-the-board spending cuts that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says could significantly damage the nation's military posture. SomeRepublicans believe that fear will temper the president's insistence on a hard bargain this month. Obama and GOP House Speaker John Boehner on Sunday held their first meeting between just the two of them since the election, and spokesmen for both emphasized afterward their lines of communication remain open.

The so-called cliff's recipe of major tax hikes and spending cuts can actually be a gentle slope, because the policy changes would be phased in over time. Washington insiders say Congress and the White House would move quickly in January or February to undo many, but not all, of the tax hikes and spending cuts.

Financial markets, however, respond to emotion as well as to research, reason and promises. If New Year's headlines scream "Negotiations Collapse," an emotional sell-off could threaten the president's hopes for continued economic recovery in his second term, even if Republicans receive most of the blame for the impasse.

"Nobody can predict the markets' reaction," said Rep. Jim Cooper, D-Tenn.

Some Republicans are surprised that the White House has not made clearer efforts to reassure Wall Street that if the Dec. 31 deadline is breached, the worrisome pile of tax increases and spending cuts would not hit all at once.

A few liberal commentators are making just that case.

"If we go past the so-called fiscal cliff deadlines and all the resulting budget cuts and tax increases come into force, the administration can minimize the damage," Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne wrote last week. "Obama can publicly announce he is delaying any cuts, on the theory thatCongress will eventually vitiate some of them. And he can make sure the bond markets know of his plans well in advance. ... Everyone (especially Wall Street) should calm down."

Some financial bloggers agree. "Although it would be bad to let the spending cuts and tax hikes fully go into effect, if this thing is addressed in early January, things will be okay," wrote Business Insider's Joe Weisenthal.

So far, the stock markets have stayed calm. The S&P 500 index is up 12 percent for the year.

That might be because investors agree that a temporary trip over the cliff wouldn't be too harmful. Chastened lawmakers, the thinking goes, would quickly minimize the economic damage with a deficit-reduction compromise that eluded them in December.

Or, it's possible that investors view the most pessimistic tones surrounding the fiscal cliff talks as posturing that will give way to a last-minute deal. If that is the thinking — and if the Dec. 31 deadline instead is breached — Obama's fear might come to pass: The expectation of a deal might produce a significant decline in stock prices if it doesn't occur.

As bad as that sounds, some liberals think it will be necessary to force many Republicans to drop their opposition to higher tax rates on the wealthy that Obama says are crucial to trimming the deficit.

Rep. Peter Welch, a Vermont Democrat who says temporarily going over the cliff wouldn't be so bad, noted what happened on Sept. 29, 2008. The House surprised investors by rejecting a proposed bailout of the crisis-stricken financial sector. Republicans strongly opposed the plan despite then-President George W. Bush's support. The Dow plunged 777 points, its largest one-day point drop ever. Four days later the House, shaken by the market reaction, passed a slightly modified bailout bill. 

Welch said a similar market meltdown next month, in the event of a fiscal cliff impasse, "is what will force members of Congress eventually to act." Few lawmakers in either party are eager to predict how the stocks and bonds markets would react to a failure to reach a fiscal cliff accord by year's end. "Let's not pretend the markets fully understand the politicians, or the politicians fully understand the markets," said Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., who has served in Congress for 37 years.

Follow Charles Babington on Twitter: http://twitter.com/cbabington



How the 'Mayan Apocalypse' came from a New Age magic mushroom trip

The 'prophecy' does not stem from the Mayans at all. Instead, the beliefs come from two New Age books in the Seventies and Eighties, says a British academic.

Jose Arguelles, author of The Mayan Factor (Image: Wikimedia)

The so-called 'Mayan' prophecy actually comes from New Age writers in the Seventies and Eighties (Image: Rex)

People who are expecting the world to end on December 21 - the so-called 'Mayan Apocalypse' - should be in for a pleasant disappointment.

The 'prophecy' does not stem from the Mayans at all - or date from thousands of years ago.

Instead, the beliefs come from two New Age books in the Seventies and Eighties. 

The two books predict outcomes as surreal as a 'upgrade' to human consciousness predicted by a spirit from the seventh century. The date itself comes from a prophecy based on a magic mushroom trip.

“December 21st will be just another Friday morning,” said Andrew Wilson, Assistant Head of Social Studies at the University of Derby. “A hippy guru called Jose Arguelles associated the date with the Mayan calendar in a book called The Mayan Factor in 1987. But it's an obsolete form of the calendar, which had not been used since the year 1100AD.”

“He claimed to be channelling various spirits, including the spirit of a Mayan king from the seventh century. He predicted a ‘shift in human consciousness’ - mass enlightenment.”

The actual date of December 21 first appeared in an earlier work - a 1975 book by Terence McKenna,  a writer known for his descriptions of “machine elves” seen while under the influence of drugs.

The date appeared in McKenna's ‘Timeline Zero’ prophecy, and was based on McKenna’s own mathematics, the Chinese I Ching and a magic mushroom trip.

McKenna later met Arguelles and the two became, Wilson says, part of a circle of New Age authors who cited each other’s work, lending the ‘prophecy’ an air of believability.

“The significance of December 21 2012 in ‘New Age’ circles emerged from the work of ‘ethnobotanist’ Terence McKenna as he travelled deep into the Amazon in the 1970s,” says Wilson. His calculations of a ‘zero time wave’ suggested the world would go through a large change on December 21.”

“Arguelles, who had a long-held interest in Native American spiritualties, was inspired by McKenna’s work. He popularised the date in connection with the ‘long count calendar’ of the Mayan people in his new-age circles.”

As the belief has evolved, it has become associated with other, wilder predictions - such as the idea that Earth will be hit by a ‘rogue planet’, Nibiru, or swallowed by a black hole.

“There is no central belief,” says Wilson, “It varies from the ideas that Earth’s magnetic poles might shift, to the idea of a ‘galactic council’ visiting Earth. There’s no one, definite idea - it mirrors the New Age beliefs from which it comes.”

“It’s become part of a lot of religious movements. For instance, ‘The Galactic Federation of Light’ believes that ‘Planet X’ will make a close pass by the earth in 2012 – causing a deep transformation of human life on Earth.

“What this and other apocalyptic dates have in common across new religious movements is that they are often predicted to occur within a believer’s lifetime - making their beliefs urgent and important,” said Wilson.

“However, most people who believe in the significance of December 21 2012 have tempered their predictions of an apocalypse to, instead, signifying some significant change in humanity. Whether that is a change in culture or a world-wide event - most believers in an apocalypse won't be preparing for an earthly end but looking forward to an imminent transformation."

“A lot of people look to this story for reassurance - about the financial climate, or even about fears of, for instance, the Large Hadron Collider.”

“What’s been popularised is the dramatic stuff - but I am definitely still doing my Christmas shopping as normal this year.”

Wilson’s paper, ‘From Mushrooms to the Stars’, will be published by Ashgate in 2013.



Georgia details nuke black market investigations

By By DESMOND BUTLER | Associated Press


 This June 24, 2012 photo shows the Hotel L Bakuria in Batumo, Georgia, Black Sea coast near the Turkish Border. In April 2012, three men gathered in secret at the hotel to talk about a deal for radioactive material for sale. The Georgian seller offered cesium, a byproduct from nuclear reactors that terrorists can use to make a dirty bomb.But one of the Turkish men made it clear he was after something much more dangerous: Uranium, the material used to make a nuclear bomb. The two Turks and the seller businessman Soslan Oniani, were convicted in  September, 2012 in a Georgian court, according to officials, and sentenced to six years in prison each. Despite years and hundreds of millions of dollars spent in the fight against illicit sale of nuclear contraband, the black market remain active in the countries around the former Soviet Union. (AP Photo by Desmond Butler)


This undated handout photo provided by the Georgia Interior Ministry shows components for four cylinders containing radioactive substances seized in Batumi, Georgia on April 10, 2012. Police, who have been tracking Georgian Businessman Soslan Oniani, for over  year, monitored him in a hotel room meeting with two Turskish citizens, trying to sell to sell the cylinders with the materials which included cesium-137 and strontium-90. The two Turks and the seller, Oniani, were convicted were convicted in  September, 2012 in a Georgian court, according to officials, and sentenced to six years in prison each.


Associated Press/Georgia Interior Ministry - This undated photo provided by the Georgia Interior Ministry shows part of a seizure of radioactive substances including iridium-192 and europium-152. Police in Kutaisi, Georgia arrested two people involved in the smuggling in February 2011. The investigation led police to track a third man, Soslan Oniani, who would be arrested in April 2012 trying to sell radioactive material to two Turkish men. Despite years of effort and hundreds of millions of dollars spent in the fight against the illicit sale of nuclear contraband, the black market remains active in the countries around the former Soviet Union. The radioactive materials, mostly left over from the Cold War, include nuclear bomb-grade uranium and plutonium, and dirty-bomb isotopes like cesium and iridium. (AP Photo/Georgia Interior Ministry) 

BATUMI, Georgia (AP) — On the gritty side of this casino resort town near the Turkish border, three men in a hotel suite gathered in secret to talk about a deal for radioactive material.

The Georgian seller offered cesium, a byproduct of nuclear reactors that terrorists can use to arm a dirty bomb with the power to kill. But one of the Turkish men, wearing a suit and casually smoking a cigarette, made clear he was after something even more dangerous: uranium, the material for a nuclear bombThe would-be buyers agreed to take a photo of the four cylinders and see if their boss in Turkey was interested. They did not know police were watching through a hidden camera. As they got up to leave, the police rushed in and arrested the men, according to Georgian officials, who were present.

The encounter, which took place in April, reflected a fear shared by U.S. and Georgian officials: Despite years of effort and hundreds of millions of dollars spent in the fight against the illicit sale of nuclear contraband, the black market remains active in the countries around the former Soviet Union. The radioactive materials, mostly left over from the Cold War, include nuclear bomb-grade uranium and plutonium, and dirty-bomb isotopes like cesium and iridium. The extent of the black market is unknown, but a steady stream of attempted sales of radioactive materials in recent years suggests smugglers have sometimes crossed borders undetected. Since the formation of a special nuclear police unit in 2005 with U.S. help and funding, 15 investigations have been launched in Georgia and dozens of people arrested. Six of the investigations were disclosed publicly for the first time to The Associated Press byGeorgian authorities. Officials with the U.S. government and the International Atomic Energy Agency declined to comment on the individual investigations, but President Barack Obama noted in a speech earlier this year that countries like Georgia and Moldova have seized highly enriched uraniumfrom smugglers. An IAEA official, who spoke anonymously because he was not authorized to comment, said the agency is concerned smuggling is still occurring in Georgia.

Four of the previously undisclosed cases, and a fifth — an arrest in neighboring Turkey announced by officials there — occurred this year. One from last year involved enough cesium-137 to make a deadly dirty bomb, officials said.

Also, Georgian officials see links between two older cases involving highly enriched uranium, which in sufficient quantity can be used to make a nuclear bomb. The AP's interviews with the two imprisoned smugglers in one case suggested that the porous borders and the poverty of the region contributed to the problem. The arrests in the casino resort of Batumi stand out for two reasons: They suggest there are real buyers — many of the other investigations involved stings with undercover police acting as buyers. And they suggest that buyers are interested in material that can be used to make a nuclear weapon. "Real buyers are rare in nuclear smuggling cases, and raise real risks," said nuclear nonproliferation specialist Matthew Bunn, who runs Harvard's Project on Managing the Atom. "They suggest someone is actively seeking to buy material for a clandestine bomb." The request for uranium raises a particularly troubling question. "There's no plausible reason for looking for black-market uranium other than for nuclear weapons— or profit, by selling to people who are looking to make nuclear weapons," Bunn said.

______________

Georgia's proximity to the large stockpiles of Cold War-era nuclear material, its position along trade routes to Asia and Europe, the roughly 225 miles (360 kilometers) of unsecured borders of its two breakaway republics, South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and the poverty of the region may explain why the nation of 4.5 million has become a transit point for nuclear material. Georgian officials say the radioactive material in the five new cases this year all transited through Abkhazia, which borders on Russia and has Russian troops stationed on its territory. Abkhazia's foreign ministry said it has no information about the Georgian allegations and would not comment, but in the past it has denied Georgian allegations.

Russia maintains that it has secured its radioactive material — including bomb-grade uranium and plutonium — and that Georgia has exaggerated the risk because of political tension with Moscow. But while the vast majority of the former Soviet Union's nuclear arsenal and radioactive material has been secured, U.S. officials say that some material in the region remains loose. "Without a doubt, we are aware and have been over the last several years that not all nuclear material is accounted for," says Simon Limage, deputy assistant secretary for non-proliferation programs at the U.S. State Department. "It is true that a portion that we are concerned about continues to be outside of regulatory control."

U.S. efforts to prevent smuggling have prioritized bomb-grade material because of the potential that a nuclear bomb could flatten a U.S. city. But security officials say an attack with a dirty bomb — explosives packed with radioactive material — would be easier for a terrorist to pull off. And terrorist groups, including al-Qaida, have sought the material to do so. A study by the National Defense University found that the economic impact from a dirty bomb attack of a sufficient scale on a city center could exceed that of the September 11, 2011, attacks on New York and Washington.

The U.S. government has been assisting about a dozen countries believed to be vulnerable to nuclear smuggling, including Georgia, to set up teams that combine intelligence with police undercover work. Limage says Georgia's team is a model for the other countries the U.S. is supporting. On Jan. 6, police arrested a man in Georgia's capital, Tbilisi, and seized 36 vials with cesium-135, a radioactive isotope that is hard to use for a weapon. The man said he had obtained the material in Abkhazia. In April, Georgian authorities arrested a group of smugglers from Abkhazia bringing in three glass containers with about 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram) of yellowcake uranium, a lightly processed substance that can be enriched into bomb-grade material.

"At first we thought that this was coincidence," said Archil Pavlenishvili, chief investigator of Georgia's anti-smuggling team. "But since all of these cases were connected with Abkhazia, it suggests that the stuff was stolen recently from one particular place. But we have no idea where. " Days later, more evidence turned up when Turkish media reported the arrest of three Turkish men with a radioactive substance in the capital, Ankara. Police seized 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram) of cesium-135, the same material seized in January in Tbilisi.

Georgian officials said the suspects were residents of Germany and driving a car with German plates, but that the material had come from Abkhazia. Turkish authorities said the men had entered Turkey from Georgia. Information provided by German authorities led to the arrest in June of five suspects in Georgia with 9 vials of cesium-135 that looked very similar to the vials seized in January. The Batumi investigation started after the arrest of two men in the city of Kutaisi in February 2011 year with a small quantity of two radioactive materials stolen from an abandoned Soviet helicopter factory, according to Georgian officials. The men said that a businessman, Soslan Oniani, had encouraged them to sell the material. Police interviewed Oniani and searched his house, but found insufficient evidence to arrest him, according to officials. Still, they kept monitoring him through phone taps and an informant. Georgian officials say Oniani was a braggart, who played on his relationship with his cousin, Tariel Oniani, a well- known organized crime boss convicted in Russia of kidnapping.

Early this year, Soslan Oniani started talking about a new deal. Through surveillance and phone taps, police learned of the meeting in Batumi and monitored it. While no money passed hands, the men discussed an illegal deal, which is sufficient for prosecution in Georgia. Tests by Georgian authorities later revealed that one lead cylinder held cesium-137, two strontium-90, and the fourth spent material that was hard to identify. All are useful for making a dirty bomb, although the material in the cylinders alone was not enough to cause mass casualties, according to data provided by Georgian nuclear regulatory authorities. The arrested Turks denied knowing they were negotiating for radioactive substances. They claimed to be musical instrument experts, who had come to Batumi seeking to buy violins. A skeptical interrogator asked them if they were familiar with the famed instrument maker Stradivarius.

One man said he had never heard of him. The two Turks and the seller, Oniani, were convicted in September in a Georgian court, according to officials, and sentenced to six years in prison each.

_______________

The Georgian smuggling cases suggest that the trade in radioactive materials is driven at least in part by poverty and the lingering legacy of Soviet corruption in a hardscrabble region. Georgian officials say that because of U.S. backed counter-smuggling efforts, organized crime groups seem to have concluded that the potential profit from trade in these materials doesn't justify the risk. But individuals sometimes conclude they can make a quick buck from radioactive material. For instance, in one newly disclosed case last year, authorities arrested two Georgian men with firearms, TNT and a lethal quantity of cesium-137. One was a former Soviet officer in an army logistics unit, who told police that at the end of his service in the early 90s, he had made a second career stealing from the military.

"He openly said: 'I was a logistics officer and my second duty was to steal everything possible," according to Pavlenishvili. The man kept the cesium for years before he and a relative tried to sell it last year to a Georgian undercover officer. He did not try to sell the weapons or explosives. Poverty and corruption also appear to have played into three smuggling incidents in 2003, 2006 and 2010 that involved bomb-grade highly enriched uranium.

In 2003, an Armenian man, Garik Dadaian, was arrested when he set off a radiation detector provided by an American program at a checkpoint on the Armenian-Georgian border. Days later, the man was released and returned to Armenia under murky circumstances.

Dadaian's name resurfaced in 2010 on a bank transfer slip in the pocket of the two smugglers arrested with highly enriched uranium. The men had obtained the material from Dadaian and were offering it as a sample of a larger quantity. Police say forensic analysis suggests the uranium may have come from the same batch seized in 2003. Russian investigators suspected Dadaian got the nuclear fuel from a manufacturing plant in Novosibirsk, Russia, where several disappearances of material have been documented. Pavlenishvili said Dadaian bribed prosecutors to win his release and take some of the uranium. The two smugglers in the 2010 case were Sumbat Tonoyan, a dairy farmer who went bankrupt, and Hrant Ohanian, a former physicist at a nuclear research facility in the Armenian capital of Yerevan. The AP interviewed both at a prison about 25 miles (40 kilometers) outside Tbilisi, where they are serving sentences of 13 and 14 years.

In separate interviews, each man blamed the other for the idea of smuggling uranium, and talked of financial hardship. Ohanian said his daughter needed urgent medical care that he couldn't afford, and Tonoyan said a bank had seized his house after his dairy factory collapsed. "I didn't have a job and I couldn't pay the bank," he said in Russian through an interpreter. The men also claimed they believed the material they were selling was to be used for scientific work, not nefarious purposes. Ohanian said a Georgian contact, who was also arrested, told him relations with Moscow were so bad that Georgian scientists could not get the uranium they needed from Russia on the open market. "I feel guilty because I behaved like an idiot," he said. "I should have known and I would never do something like this again."

Follow Desmond Butler at http://twitter.com/desmondbutler





  

Questions have been raised by members of the Australian public whether MI5, MI6 and/or their well known murder partners Mossad where involved somehow in the death of
  Indian-born mother-of-two Jacintha Saldanha, 46, who the UK media are claiming that she took her own life...
and it is noted that all media reports coming from the United Kingdom only ever call it a suspected suicide... but was it a murder by  MI5, MI6 and/or their well known murder partners Mossad 
to make and example of the nurse who gave out the private information about
 Kate Middleton  who was in a U.K. hospital...



Australian readers of  INLNews.com and awn.bz who have read all about the murder of Thomas Allwood,
 



Australian readers of  INLNews.com and awn.bz who have read all about the murder of Thomas Allwood,
INL News Under-Cover Investigative Journalist  and co producer with Stephen Carew-Reid and  the INL News Group of Fringe Shows Have Talent TV Shows Have, on the 21st June, 2012 in Broxburn Scotland which is about an hour's drive from Edinburgh... and how the evidence brought out at the recent trial of Kyle Montgomery,
who had been charged by the Scottish Lothian Borders Police for the murder of Thomas Allwood seems to clearly show that the Scottish Lothian Borders Police
and the Scottish Prosecution known as the Procurator Fiscal's Office and the UK Government are:
not interested the fact that their own prosecution witnesses agree that they did not ring the police and/or an ambulance when it was discovered that Kyle Montgomery has allegedly placed a 6 inch knife wound into the right chest of Thomas Allwood allegedly at about 2.15 am on the 21st June, 2012 ... and just let Thomas Allwood blead to death until he was found by three boys at 4.45 am two streets away...

David Cameron, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (whom he and his treasury solicitors was about to be exposed by Thomas Allwood at a High Court of Justice hearing London on the 24th July, 2012 for criminal comtempt of court); the Scottish Lothian Borders Police 
and/or the Scottish Prosecution known as the Procurator Fiscal's Office and the UK Government have not offered any official statement saying how sorry they are that Thomas Allwood was murdered on the 21st June, 2012..if fact they seem to be celebrating Thomas Allwood's death having appeared to have branded Thomas Allwood an enemy of the United Kingdom just for wanting the truth to be publicly known and for people who have wrongly victimised by the law obtain some fair justice...

None on the main stream international media have bothered to even report the murder of Thomas Allwood, INL News Under Cover Investigative Journalist, poet and co-producer of the Fringe Shows Have Talent TV Show and other feature films....as there seems to be a "D Notice" stopping them reporting the murder of Thomas Allwood... which is usually issued when sectret service organisations such as MI5, MI6 and/or Mossad are involved with the murder of someone that is declared an enemy of the state as it seems that Thomas Allwood was... just because he was prepared to speak the truth and wanted the public to know the truth..

Thomas Allwood was murdered for exposing the truth and fighting for  truth and justice for the ordinary people like Janice Pritchard ans her son Robert Carter who had their family home taken from them in a very wrongful way and put on the street in a very wrongful way by power powerful property developers and their even more powerful legal teams that had the power and influence to be able to tell a justice in the High Court of Justice what orders they wanted and such orders were always granted regardless of the rights and wrongs of the case presented to the judge hearing the case..
Investigators doing a two year undercover investigation into the running of the High Court of Justice have stated in their report that the London's High Court of Justice is one of the most corruptly run courts in the world...where the odds of a litigant in person who does not have formal legal representation getting fairness and justice are a million to one....where  judges, justices, masters and adjudicators simply do not bother on most occasions to closely read legal and factual submissions and statements made by litigants in person and only closely read legal and factual submissions and statements filed by the licensed solicitors and barristers that are representing the other side of the legal argument....the way it works is that when a litigant in person issues a claim and/or application in the High Court of Justice without using a licensed solicitor or barrister... the  judges, justices, masters and adjudicators simply do not bother on most occasions to closely read the litigants in person's legal and factual submissions and statements  and as a matter or routine simply rule against the litigant in person with an ruling that their case has no merit... whether in fairness the case had merit or not... which it may have merit but just not written in the formal legal way a licensed solicitor or barrister would have written their claim or application form... and then once one or two claims or applications have been unsuccessfully made and they are ruled as having no merit.... then a civil restraining order is made against the litigant in person to hinder them from issuing any further claims or applications to have their legal grievances aired in the courts...and thousands of pounds of legal costs are issued against them..so that their opposition solicitors and barristers sue the litigant in person for these court costs to make sure theydo not even trouble them again and/or obtain a court order that until the unfair court costs are paid that no claims and/or applications can be made by them... as another method to bury the truth...it has been found by the two year undercover operation compiled with the help of Thomas Allwood, INL News former head undercover investigative reporter, that on many instances the solicitors and barristers deliberately present false and misleading information to the court and deliberately withhold material information from the court... to obtain the court orders they require from the court... and what is even more shocking..... what Thomas Allwood and his investigation team found stated is even more shocking is that where  judges, justices, masters and adjudicators are well aware that  when the solicitors and barrister deliberately present false and misleading information to the court and deliberately withhold material information from the court... they simply condone such wrongful and illegal behaviour and help the solicitors and barristers cover this all up and make sure any complaint about their behaviour is completely buried by striking out any complaint made formerly to the court in a criminal contempt application and without reading the details of the complaint..strike out the criminal contempt application  as having no merit and rule thousands of pounds of court costs against the litigant in person for daring to try to bring the court's attention to this wrongful and illegal behaviour ... and sometimes as in the case of Thomas Allwood have the litigant in person murdered and organise the police and prosecution to cover up who really murdered the litigant in person and why he was murdered by trying to convince the public into believing it was just an accidental death as a result of some drunken argument, and not a planned and calculated murder.... so the person that has wrongly been blamed for the death is only found guilty of being officially being involved with an accidental death... and being a person not mentally well and being a


 Scitzophrenic with mental depression will simple spend a year or so in a luxury mental institution and then be let out to live a normal life taking medication... which they were taking anyway before the death of the enemy ( the litigant in person)... and the real professionally trained killer who works for some state secret service organisation like MI5, MI6 and/or Mossad is never looked for and never charged.. so he or she can be available when needed by state secret service organisation like MI5, MI6 and/or Mossad is never looked for and never charged.. so he or she can be available when needed by state secret service organisations like MI5, MI6 and/or Mossad for thei next murder assignment...




Kate Hospital: Nurse's Family Pays Tribute

Sky News

The family of nurse Jacintha Saldanha have thanked people for their support and messages of condolence.

Speaking on their behalf, Keith Vaz MP described Mrs Saldanha as a "loving mother and a loving wife".

"This is a close family, they are devastated by what has happened, they miss her every moment of every day," he said, as he stood beside Mrs Saldanha's husband Benedict Barboza and her two teenage children.

"They are really grateful for the support of the British public and the public overseas for the messages of support and kindness," he added.

The post-mortem for the nurse, who put through a hoax call made about the Duchess of Cambridge's medical condition, will take place on Tuesday.

Mrs Saldanha took the initial call from Australian DJs Mel Greig and Michael Christian who posed as the Queen and the Prince of Wales when they rang the hospital where Kate was being treated for acute morning sickness.

Believing it to be genuine, she put the call through to another colleague who was duped into describing the duchess' condition in detail.

Mrs Saldanha was found dead days later, having apparently taken her own life.

Her post-mortem will take place at Westminster Mortuary.

Prime Minister David Cameron spoke of his "shock" at Mrs Saldanha's death.

He said: "I thought it was completely shocking ... I heard about the suicide of this nurse, who worked incredibly hard and obviously was incredibly dedicated.

"I feel incredibly sorry for her and her family. It is an absolute tragedy that this has happened and I am sure everyone will want to reflect on how it was allowed to happen."

It comes after the boss of Sydney radio station 2Day FM said five attempts were made to contact London's King Edward VII's Hospital about the prank call before it aired.

"Following the hoax call, the radio station did not speak to anyone in the hospital's senior management or anyone at the company who handles our media enquiries," a hospital spokesman said.

Earlier, Rhys Holleran - head of the station's parent company Southern Cross Austereo - said he was satisfied that the appropriate checks were carried out before the pre-recorded segment was broadcast.

"It is absolutely true to say that we actually did attempt to contact those people on multiple occasions," he told Fairfax Radio, an Australian broadcaster.

"We rang them up to discuss what we had recorded ... we attempted to contact them on no less than five occasions ... we wanted to speak to them about it."

Britain's Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has told Sky News the nurse's response to the prank call does not point to a widespread breach of procedure.

Asked what lessons needed to be learned, he said: "I think we need to make sure that the right safeguards are in place, that the right training is in place, but I think it's too early for me to say whether this is something which is just an individual prank that went horribly wrong and it was an isolated breach or whether there are more widespread issues.

"My instinct is that this was an isolated incident with very exceptional circumstances."

Labour MP Mr Vaz, who visited Mrs Saldanha's family in Bristol on Sunday, has called on the hospital to hold an inquiry and provide more support to the relatives.

"What is needed, clearly, is an inquiry by the hospital into what has happened.

"The hospital has sent them a letter, which I have seen, but I'm surprised that nobody has made the journey to Bristol to sit with them and offer them the counselling that I think they need."

He said the family was in "terrible distress", adding: "More support in my view needs to be given."

A statement from King Edward VII Hospital said chief executive John Lofthouse had offered to meet Mrs Saldanha's husband.

It said it had also offered to establish a memorial fund in her name.

The statement read: "We hope that everyone will focus on doing all they can for the family of Jacintha Saldanha at this terrible time."





Royal hoax pranksters break silence

The two young 2Day FM hosts at the centre of the controversial Royal prank have broken their silence on the call that had such tragic repercussions.

Martin Frizell weighs in on royal hoax

Headlines and commentary in the UK have condemned the two young radio hosts at the centre of 2DayFM's tragic prank call.

The two young 2Day FM hosts at the centre of the controversial Royal prank have broken their silence on the call that had such tragic repercussions.

After the stunt received international coverage, the nurse who answered the call, 46-year-old Jacintha Saldanha, took her own life.

How much the prank had to do with the tragedy is open to conjecture, but what is certain is that Michael Christian and Mel Greig are two young people under unimaginable pressure.

Though they both say that they are emotionally stable in talking about the events, both Christian and Greig appear visibly distraught.

More stories from Today Tonight

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When Greig describes hearing the dreadful results following the days after the prank she says "unfortunately I remember that moment very well because I haven't stopped thinking about it since it happened, and I remember my first question was 'was she a mother?'"

On hearing that Saldanha had indeed been the mother of two children, Greig says she was "very sorry and saddened for the family. I can't imagine what they'd be going through."

Christian says he is "gutted", "shattered", and "heartbroken".


He says "we're still trying to get our heads around everything. Trying to make sense of the situation."

According to Greig the whole tragedy doesn't even seem real. "It doesn't seem real because you just couldn't foresee something like that happening from a prank call. You know it was never meant to go that far. It was meant to be a silly little prank that so many people have done before. This wasn't meant to happen," she said.

When asked whether, in hindsight, they would they do something like that again, Christian says "I don't think that anyone could have predicted what could've happened. It was just a tragic set of circumstances. I don't think anyone could have thought that we'd be here."

Today Tonight's latest celebrity stories

So how did the idea of the prank first come up? Both Christian and Greig are clear that the idea was the whole team's - that there is no single person that can or should be blamed. "Everything's done as a team," the said.

When asked whether there was legal advice or guidance from senior staff on how best to tackle the call, both Christian and Greig are clear on the fact that the call was never meant to be more than a silly joke.

"The call to begin with wasn't about speaking to Kate. It wasn't about trying to get a scoop or anything. The call was just – I mean we'd assumed that we'd be hung up on and that'd be that," Christian said.

Indian-born mother-of-two Jacintha Saldanha, 46, is thought to have taken her own life. Photo: Supplied

However when the two weren't hung up on during the call last week, the prank was certainly treated as a scoop. The hosts were both shocked and amused when they were put through and given information about Princess Kate's health.

According to Greig "the accents were terrible. You know it was designed to be stupid. We were never meant to get that far - from the little corgis barking in the background – we obviously wanted it to be a joke."

Christian echoes that "the joke was always on us, not anyone else. It wasn't about trying to fool someone. I mean we just assumed that with the voices that we put on, you know, we were going to get told off and that was the gag – in us."

More stories from reporter Clare Brady

Asked whether Austereo provides any coaching or training about the legal and ethical implications of what is put on air, Christian is clear that his role is as a presenter and that there are others who make the tough calls.

"This phonecall is the same with any phonecall, with any prerecorded segment that goes to air. There's processes in place and people that make those decisions," he said.

"There are people that make those decisions for us."

2Day FM hosts, Michael Christian and Mel Greig. Photo: Supplied

Greig echoes the sentiments, saying "it went through the processes of every other recorded bit that we do – from interviews to you know anything at all that gets recorded and passed on to the appropriate people, goes through the process, and we're told whether it's yes or no to play."

While the powers that be made the decisions about whether to air the segment, the two DJs were certainly giddy that they'd pulled off such an unlikely prank.

"We couldn't believe that it had worked, absolutely. You didn't expect it to. We thought a hundred people before us would've tried the same thing. We just did not see that actually working," Greig said.

Yahoo!7 News: Sydney station tried to contact nurses

Christian is careful to reiterate that the point of the prank "wasn't to get something that no one else had. It wasn't about getting (information)."

However they did try to get a medical condition update - and the medical condition of a Royal at that.

Greig explains that "we didn't actually want that. We just wanted to be hung up on. We wanted to be hung up on with our silly voices and wanted a twenty second segment to air of us doing stupid voices."

Police officers stand outside the King Edward VII's hospital following the death of a nurse who took a hoax call concerning the Duchess of Cambridge's treatment on December 7, 2012 in London, England. Photo: Getty

The two didn't identify themselves at the end of the call (though today station management said that they'd tried to contact the two nurses who were part of the call a number of times before the segment went to air).

"That's where the process comes in. We just record everything and pass it to the team. That's what we do," Greig said.

"And again the call itself is – there's no malice in the call. There was no digging. There was no trying to upset or get a reaction," Christian reiterated.

Yahoo!7 News: Royals close ranks as radio station defends conduct

The extreme vilification of the two DJs by the UK media looks like a witch hunt - there are those that want someone to pay. At the same time hackers here are threatening to shut down the radio station and hack into the whole system if the two young DJs aren't sacked.

In tears, Greig says "there's nothing that can make me feel worse than what I feel right now. And for what I feel for the family. We're so sorry that this has happened to them."

Though both DJs are being given counseling and support from Austereo, they say their priority is that the family of the nurse gets the support and care they need.

"I care more about the family. I want to know that they've got the support that they need and that the public are, you know, being respectful of their privacy," Greig said.

She has not made contact with the family, deciding that it was no appropriate at this time.

"I don't think it's an appropriate time to do that yet. But this is where we want to say that we are thinking of you and if we could call you we would want to reach out to you."

So if they could turn the clock back, would these two DJs make the same phonecall?

"If we played any involvement in her death, then we're very sorry for that. And time will only tell," Christian said.

However he does maintain that "these are prank calls. They've been around for as long as radio's existed, and they're done by every radio station."

And while that's certainly true, the results of this specific prank call are horific. Christian is clear that "no one could have predicted this result."

What does the future hold for the two DJs at the centre of this disaster?

"I don't want to think about that right now. There's bigger, more pressing issues and that's making sure that family gets through this tough time. You know our careers aren't important at the moment," Greig said.

With Scotland Yard now involved, there is eery chance that they two will be called to an inquest, which will probably be in London, where they'll meet the family face to face. Are they prepared for that?

Not ready to look at the future just yet, Christian says "right now we're trying to wrap our heads around what's happened."

Greig assures that "if that's going to make them feel better then I'll do what I need to do, absolutely. If that's something that they want to do, to get some closure, then I'll do that."

Both Greig and Christian have a lot of support. A poll out today of 11,000 people, had two thirds saying they feel the two DJs are not to blame for this horrible result. However the other side are horrible comments in mainstream media and on Twitter saying they've ruined many lives, 'shame on you', and 'you've got blood on your hands'.

Christian says that that's not what they are focusing on.

"What's important right now is you know, that the family of Jacintha are getting the support and the love that they deserve. And I mean that's what's important here. You know, it was, it is, nothing more than a tragic turn of events that no one could have predicted and, you know, for the part that we played, we're obviously incredibly sorry."

"If we had any idea that something like this could be even possible to happen, you know, we couldn't see this happening. It was meant to be a prank call," Greig said.

When the phonecall first aired, Greig said it was the 'highlight of her career' - incredibly excited to get the call through. But of course, as she keeps repeating "we couldn't foresee what was going to happen in the future."

"The call itself was not malicious and no harm was intended on Jacintha, or the other nurse, or Kate, or Prince William, or anyone. It wasn't – from start to finish – there was no harm intended. And obviously, you know, we're incredibly sorry for the harm that we may have helped contribute (to)," Christian concluded.

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifelineon 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

Indian-born mother-of-two Jacintha Saldanha, 46, is thought to have taken her own life. Photo: Supplied


Police officers stand outside the King Edward VII's hospital following the death of a nurse who took a hoax call concerning the Duchess of Cambridge's treatment on December 7, 2012 in London, England. Photo: Getty

2Day FM hosts, Michael Christian and Mel Greig. Photo: Supplied


Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifelineon 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.





First Picture Of Kate Hospital Hoax Nurse
The first picture has been released of a nurse who apparently
First Picture Of Kate Hospital Hoax Nurse

Sky News –
 
The first picture has been released of a nurse who apparently committed suicide after being duped by a prank call.
Nurse Jacintha Saldanha was found dead days after taking the hoax call from an Australian radio station and putting it through to a nurse on the Duchess of Cambridge's ward, who divulged private information about her treatment.
The body of the 46-year-old mother-of-two was discovered at an address near King Edward VII's hospital in London - where she had worked for four years - on Friday morning.
Kate, who is understood to be well under 12 weeks pregnant, was admitted to the hospital on Monday with severe morning sickness and released again on Thursday.

                       INL News Picture of the Month December 2012
                     
                                Snow on the beach after a cold snap
                                                      

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/world/story/2012-01-01/japan-earthquake/52310810/1

                    Japan Earthquake 2012: 6.4 Magnitude Quake Strikes Off Southeast Coast

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/17/japan-earthquake-2012-southeast-coast_n_1604183.html
Reuters  |  Posted: 06/17/2012

TOKYO, June 18 (Reuters) - A 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Japan early on Monday

tp://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-20526345

28 November 2012 

Kyle Montgomery found guilty of killing journalist Thomas Allwood

Thomas Allwood was born in Scotland but spent most of his life in Australia

First offender Kyle Montgomery will be sentenced next month for the killing

A man who stabbed a journalist to death in West Lothian has been convicted of culpable homicide.
Kyle Montgomery, from Winchburgh, denied murdering 56-year-old Thomas Allwood in Broxburn in June.
A jury at the High Court in Livingston took four-and-a-half hours to find the 24-year-old guilty of the lesser charge.
Sentence was deferred until 20 December at the High Court in Edinburgh for background reports.
Montgomery had said he grabbed a knife to scare off Mr Allwood after claiming he was attacked by him at a house in Broxburn.
He said the killing was an accident and that he did not know the blade had sliced through the victim's chest and severed a major artery during the struggle.
After the attack, Mr Allwood, who was a journalist with the Australian-based INL News Group, was found on Clarkson Road by members of the public.
Police who were called to the scene followed a trail of blood from his body to Montgomery's father house.
They found the knife, still bloodstained, in a cutlery drawer. Montgomery was detained as he returned to the house from a nearby shop.
Mr Allwood was born in Scotland but his family emigrated to Australia when he was a baby and he spent most of his life there.
He was involved in producing a TV show called Fringe Shows Have Talent, to showcase entertainers performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Det Insp Stuart Houston, who led the Lothian and Borders Police investigation, said: "It is my sincere hope, that following today's verdict Mr Allwood's family can begin to move on with their lives and put this horrendous ordeal behind them.
"I would also like to thank the members of the community who came forward and assisted with this investigation.
"Lothian and Borders Police are committed to tackling violent crime and by working closely with our partners at the Crown Office, ensure that offences of this nature are investigated thoroughly and those responsible are removed from our communities."

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/scottishnews/4671404/Nailed-for-Australian-guest-knife-kill.html

Nailed for Australian guest knife kill

The Sun -Thursday. November, 2012
News: 

A KNIFE thug was found guilty yesterday of stabbing an Aussie guest to death in a drunken brawl.

Kyle Montgomery, 24, was convicted of culpable homicide after he denied murdering Thomas Allwood, 56, after a late-night boozing session.
Montgomery stabbed the journalist as they battled in the street following a row at his dad’s house in Broxburn, West Lothian.
He told the High Court in Livingston he grabbed the blade to scare off his victim after being att-acked and killed him by accident in the struggle.
The fatal blow sliced through Scots-born Mr Allwood’s chest, severing a major artery.
Police called to the scene in June this year found a trail of blood leading from Mr Allwood’s body to the house.
The bloodstained knife was found in a cutlery drawer. Montgomery, of Winchburgh, will be sentenced on December 20.

http://www.ukcourtsnet.co.uk/uk-courts-p3?sort=size

http://www.ukcourtsnet.co.uk/courts-of-scotland?language=en

Journalist's killer found guilty

20 hrs ago | bbc.co.uk
First offender Kyle Montgomery will be sentenced next month for the killing A man who stabbed a journalist to death in West Lothian has been convicted of culpable homicide. Kyle Montgomery, from Winchburgh, denied murdering...Read more...

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/scottishnews/4669456/Australian-guest-knifed-by-accident.html
 
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/scottishnews/4671404/Nailed-for-Australian-guest-knife-kill.html
 
Nailed for Australian guest knife kill
The Sun -Thursday. November, 2012
News: 
 
A KNIFE thug was found guilty yesterday of stabbing an Aussie guest to death in a drunken brawl.
Kyle Montgomery, 24, was convicted of culpable homicide after he denied murdering Thomas Allwood, 56, after a late-night boozing session.
Montgomery stabbed the journalist as they battled in the street following a row at his dad’s house in Broxburn, West Lothian.
He told the High Court in Livingston he grabbed the blade to scare off his victim after being att-acked and killed him by accident in the struggle.
The fatal blow sliced through Scots-born Mr Allwood’s chest, severing a major artery.
Police called to the scene in June this year found a trail of blood leading from Mr Allwood’s body to the house.
The bloodstained knife was found in a cutlery drawer. Montgomery, of Winchburgh, will be sentenced on December 20.
 
http://www.ukcourtsnet.co.uk/uk-courts-p3?sort=size
 
http://www.ukcourtsnet.co.uk/courts-of-scotland?language=en
Journalist's killer found guilty
20 hrs ago | bbc.co.uk
First offender Kyle Montgomery will be sentenced next month for the killing A man who stabbed a journalist to death in West Lothian has been convicted of culpable homicide. Kyle Montgomery, from Winchburgh, denied murdering...Read more...
 
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/scottishnews/4669456/Australian-guest-knifed-by-accident.html


Australian guest knifed ‘by accident’
The Sun Published: 28th November 2012
Victim ... Thomas Allwood
 
A MURDER accused told a trial yesterday he stabbed an Aussie house guest by accident.
Kyle Montgomery, 24, said he picked up a knife for “protection” in dad Robert’s kitchen when a boozy row with Thomas Allwood erupted in violence.
The High Court in Livingston heard he hoped to “scare off” Mr Allwood, 55, after the journalist attacked him.
Montgomery, of Winchburgh, West Lothian, said he had no memory of striking the fatal blow during the bust-up in Broxburn in June.
He told a jury: “My intention was to get him away from the house.”
Montgomery denies the murder of Mr Allwood. The trial continues.
 
http://www.glasgowwired.co.uk/news.php/1466752-Kyle-Montgomery-found-guilty-of-killing-journalist-Thomas-Allwood

Scotland

Kyle Montgomery found guilty of killing journalist Thomas Allwood

Published: 28th Nov 2012
A man who stabbed a journalist to death in West Lothian has been convicted of culpable homicide.
Kyle Montgomery, from Winchburgh, denied murdering 56-year-old Thomas Allwood in Broxburn in June.
A jury at the High Court in Livingston took four-and-a-half hours to find the 24-year-old guilty of the lesser charge.
Sentence was deferred until 20 December at the High Court in Edinburgh for background reports.
Montgomery had said he grabbed a knife to scare off Mr Allwood after claiming he was attacked by him at a house in Broxburn.
He said the killing was an accident and that he did not know the blade had sliced through the victim's chest and severed a major artery during the struggle.
After the attack, Mr Allwood, who was a journalist with the Australian-based INL News Group, was found on Clarkson Road by members of the public.
Police who were called to the scene followed a trail of blood from his body to Montgomery's father house.
They found the knife, still bloodstained, in a cutlery drawer. Montgomery was detained as he returned to the house from a nearby shop.
Mr Allwood was born in Scotland but his family emigrated to Australia when he was a baby and he spent most of his life there.
He was involved in producing a TV show called Fringe Shows Have Talent, to showcase entertainers performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Det Insp Stuart Houston, who led the Lothian and Borders Police investigation, said: "It is my sincere hope, that following today's verdict Mr Allwood's family can begin to move on with their lives and put this horrendous ordeal behind them.
"I would also like to thank the members of the community who came forward and assisted with this investigation.
"Lothian and Borders Police are committed to tackling violent crime and by working closely with our partners at the Crown Office, ensure that offences of this nature are investigated thoroughly and those responsible are removed from our communities."

Daily Record : dailyrecord.co.uk
 Convicted of killing journalist


Montgonmery_Guilty
29th November 2012 by Vic Roderick
A man who knifed a journalist to death in a drunken street brawl was convicted of culpable homicide yesterday. Kyle Montgomery, 24, of Winchburgh, West Lothianm had denied murdering Thomas Allwood, 56, after a booze session on June 21.
A jury at the High Court in Livingston took four-and-a-half hours to find him guilty of the lesser charge. Sentence was deferred until December 20 for reports.
In evidence, Montgomery claimed he'd grabbed the knife to scare Thomas off after being attacked by him at a house in Broxburn.
He said the killing was an accident and that he did not know the blade had sliced through the victims chest and severed a major artery as he struggled with him.
Scots-born Thoma's family emigrated Down Under when he was a baby.
 

Australian guest knifed ‘by accident’

The Sun Published: 28th November 2012
Thomas Allwood
Victim ... Thomas Allwood

A MURDER accused told a trial yesterday he stabbed an Aussie house guest by accident.

Kyle Montgomery, 24, said he picked up a knife for “protection” in dad Robert’s kitchen when a boozy row with Thomas Allwood erupted in violence.
The High Court in Livingston heard he hoped to “scare off” Mr Allwood, 55, after the journalist attacked him.
Montgomery, of Winchburgh, West Lothian, said he had no memory of striking the fatal blow during the bust-up in Broxburn in June.
He told a jury: “My intention was to get him away from the house.”
Montgomery denies the murder of Mr Allwood. The trial continues.



Murder victim tried to strangle accused in fight over a woman

20 November 2012 STV

http://news.stv.tv/scotland/201672-murder-victim-tried-to-strangle-accused-in-fight-over-a-woman/
  
Thomas Allwood: The 55-year-old was found dead in Broxburn earlier this year.

A father has told a murder trial that a man he invited home from the pub tried to strangle his son during an argument about a woman.

Robert Montgomery said he threw Thomas Allwood out of his home minutes later, but his son Kyle followed him armed with a bread knife.
 
 
He returned a short time later with the blade covered in blood, the High Court at Livingston was told on Tuesday.
Kyle Montgomery, 24, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Australian journalist Mr Allwood, 55, on June 21.
Montgomery, from Winchburgh, West Lothian, denies assaulting the deceased, repeatedly punching him on the head and body, pursuing him with a knife and striking him on the body with a knife.
Mr Montgomery, 65, a self-confessed alcoholic, told how he had gone drinking in a local pub that night after his son gave him £20 for Father's Day. He befriended Mr Allwood and his girlfriend Maggie in a pub in Broxburn, West Lothian, and invited them back to his house for a drink.
When they got there, Maggie sat down beside the accused while Mr Montgomery and the Australian sat talking on another couch. He said he felt uncomfortable because he thought the woman, who was in her 40s, was behaving "inappropriately" towards his son, rubbing his hand and putting her head in his lap.
He asked Mr Allwood "are you going to do something about that?" and he responded - "he can have her".
Mr Montgomery went upstairs to the toilet at around 2am and returned a few minutes later to find his son pinned to the floor by Mr Allwood. He said the Australian had his foot on the younger man's chest and both hands clamped around his neck "strangling him".
He told the jury: "I could see the fear in Kyle's eyes. I told him (Allwood) to get off and he ran out the back door. He came back about 10 minutes later. He was banging on the back door real loud. I opened it and he tried to come through the door like a raging bull, going for Kyle. Kyle got up, pushed me out of the way and pushed him out into the back garden." A few minutes later his son also left the house, but returned shortly afterwards, pulled open a kitchen drawer and grabbed a bread knife.
He said: "Kyle was really furious at that point. I tried to take it (the knife) from him but he held it up above his head. He's a lot taller than me. He went out with it."
Mr Montgomery said he did not hear or see anything happening outside because he remained inside, sitting on the sofa.
Advocate depute Martin Macari asked him: "What's the next thing you remember happening?"
He replied: "Him (Kyle) coming back in again about five minutes later. There was blood on the knife."
He said his son, who seemed angry, was holding the weapon in his right hand with his arm out by his side and the blade pointing away from him. Asked what he did next, he said he took the knife from his son and put it back in the cutlery drawer.
He told the jury: "I said 'Have you done something bad?' He said 'Yup'."
Mr Macari said: "Did you ask him what it was?"
He replied: "No. I found it very traumatic."
Mr Montgomery said his son left the house without saying anything further. He fell asleep on the sofa and was wakened by police who handcuffed him.
Under cross-examination by defence counsel Derek Ogg, Mr Montgomery confirmed he had told police the Australian man had said something like "I'll kill him" as he was throttling the accused.
He added: "Kyle was really scared and wasn't fighting back."
Mr Montgomery said his son had been treated for depression after being bullied at school for having an English accent. He described the accused as a "sensitive" character, who was a "brilliant" chess player.
The case continues.

25 June 2012 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-18581707

Man in court over Thomas Allwood murder

thomas allwoodThomas Allwood was found lying in the road
A man has appeared in court charged with murder following the death of a 55-year-old man in West Lothian last week.
Thomas Allwood was found by members of the public lying across Pyothall Road in Broxburn at about 04:45 on Thursday.
Kyle Montgomery, 24, of Winchburgh, appeared on petition at Livingston Sheriff Court.
He made no plea or declaration and was remanded in custody for further inquiries.



http://www.twylah.com/BBCScotlandNews/tweets/217293627293044736
A man has appeared in court charged with murder following the death of a 55-year-old man in West Lothian last week. Thomas Allwood was found by members of the public lying across Pyothall Road in Broxburn at about 04:45 on Thursday. Kyle Montgomery, 24, of Winchburgh, appeared on petition at Livingston Sheriff Court.



Australian visitor died in the street after being stabbed in chest

STV 19 November 2012

http://local.stv.tv/edinburgh/201510-australian-visitor-died-in-the-street-after-being-stabbed-once/


 Thomas Allwood: The 55-year-old was found dead in the street.
An Australian visitor to Scotland died in the street of a small town after being stabbed once with a knife.
On Monday, a jury was told Thomas Allwood's body was found in Broxburn, West Lothian, in the early hours of June 21 this year. At the High Court at Livingston, the prosecution and defence agreed the cause of death was a single stab wound to the 55-year-old investigative journalist's chest. Kyle Montgomery, 24, is on trial after pleading not guilty to murdering Mr Allwood. Montgomery, from Winchburgh, West Lothian, denies assaulting the Mr Allwood on various occasions on the night he died, repeatedly punching him on the head and body, pursuing him with a knife and striking him on the body with a knife. The attacks are alleged to have happened in Galloway Crescent, Clarkson Road and elsewhere in Broxburn. Mr Allwood was found by members of the public lying in Pyothall Road, near Clarkson Road, at about 4:45am. June Douglas, 44, who lives next door to Montgomery's father Robert in Galloway Crescent, said she saw the accused in the street at around 1pm on June 20 carrying a bag which she assumed contained alcohol.
A few minutes later she saw him at the door of his father's home trying to get in. She told the court her neighbour 
was a known alcoholic and frequently caused a nuisance. In the early hours of the following morning
 she said she was startled by a loud bang on the wall of her bedroom just after 3am.
She said: "It was as if somebody was going to come through the wall. It gave me a start - I'd never heard anything like the bang. 
I just took it that they were fighting and banging off the walls. It was something that happened all the time."
Under cross examination by defence advocate Derek Ogg, 
Ms Douglas agreed Mr Montgomery's house was "used like a drinking den". She added: "It was like living next door to a pub."
Her friend Christopher McDonald, 31, who was staying with her at the time, said loud music, banging and the sound of raised voices had continued long after Ms Douglas had gone to bed. He was also startled by the loud noise at around 3.15am.
He said: "The bang was the one thing that was out of the ordinary. I just assumed they were fighting again. 
The whole house shook."
He said he identified the sound of four voices in Mr Montgomery's one-bedroom maisonette that night. 
Things went quiet after the bang, then he said he heard someone leave by the back door.
He told the jury: "Someone went out quietly. The door was never closed quietly. 
What drew my attention was that it wasn't slammed. Later - after 5 0'clock - I heard really loud voices from the garden.
"I got really angry at that point. I pulled aside the curtain and I was ready to go mental, but the police were there."
Earlier barmaid Lisa Feenan, 30, said the accused's father Mr Montgomery had left the Badger's Brook pub 
in Broxburn just after 10 pm on June 20 with a man she knew only as "the Australian".
She said Mr Montgomery had been drinking Guinness in the bar for an hour and a half but the Australian visitor, 
who was with a woman she knew as Margaret, had only taken soft drinks.
In a joint minute of agreement read to the jury, the Crown produced technical evidence, 
including records of mobile phone calls by the accused, his father Robert and Tina Borst.
CCTV footage from cameras in Broxburn Main Street and the Badger's Brook pub was lodged as evidence along with a recording of a 999 call made by witness James McMillan on the morning of the incident.
A till receipt for cigarettes and a lighter from the Costcutter store at Fairfield Service Station along with CCTV film captured just before 5am have also been lodged.

Australian visitor died in the street after being stabbed in chest

STV 19 November 2012 




                    

Submariner Admits Official Secrets Act Breach

by Darren McCaffrey, Sky Reporter | Sky News
     

A former Royal Navy submariner has admitted collecting secret coding programmes that could be useful to an enemy of the UK.
Petty officer Edward Devenney, from Northern Ireland, pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to gathering details of encryption programmes in breach of the Official Secrets Act.
The 30-year-old also admitted a charge of misconduct in a public office in relation to a meeting with two people he thought were from the Russian secret service.
He said he had discussed information relating to the movement of nuclear submarines with the pair.
They turned out to be British agents who carried out a sting operation in January of this year.
The Official Secrets Act charge was collecting information for a purpose prejudicial to the safety or interests of the state between November 18 last year and March 7 this year.
Devenney gathered details of "crypto material" - programmes used to encrypt secret information - which could be useful to an enemy.
He denied a second count of communicating information to another person and this will not be pursued by prosecutors.
The Ministry of Defence has said no classified information was ever passed on to the Russians or any other countries.
It has described Devenney as somewhat of a Walter Mitty character - referring to the fantasist character in James Thurber's book The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.
The judge, who said it was a highly unusual case, adjourned sentencing until December 12.
Some of that hearing will be held in private as the information relates to current British naval operations.
Devenney has been remanded in custody.


I am not in love with David Petraeus': Paula Broadwell's bizarre denial during interview filmed five months into her affair with disgraced CIA boss
by Daniel Bates
'I am not in love with David Petraeus': Paula Broadwell's bizarre denial during interview filmed five months into her affair with disgraced CIA boss
by Daniel Bates 12 November 2012
The woman who had an affair with David Petraeus denied she was in love with him in a bizarre interview she gave in the midst of their fling.
Speaking in an interview while promoting her book in February, Paula Broadwell said without prompting: 'I am not in love with David Petraeus', in what was something of a Freudian slip.
By that stage their affair was around five months having started when he became head of the CIA in September last year. It ended around July, according to reports.

 Freudian? In an interview with Arthur Kade, Paula Broadwell let slip: 'I'm not in love with David Petraeus'
In the interview Broadwell, who is married with two young sons, revealed that she had sent Petraeus' wife Holly a copy of her her fawning biography of her husband - and claimed that she loved it.
The disclosure could reignite the debate about what information she was given access to
If Petraeus, 60, was prepared to show her his intimate correspondence with mentors then he may have allowed her to see classified information too.

Affair: Former CIA boss David Petraeus is pictured with Paula Broadwell, his biographer and alleged mistress
Controversially, Broadwell even claims that it was Petraeus' idea, and not hers, to turn her dissertation project on military leadership into the book it became: 'All In: The Education Of General David Petraeus'.
The interview was carried out by Arthur Kade, a former financial advisor turned humanitarian who also conducts celebrity interviews.
He and Broadwell sit in front of an open fire for 13 minutes during which she speaks at length about the book.
Broadwell says: 'I conducted over 700 interviews, you can appreciate how time consuming that is, and to transcribe then and I was trying to do this all on my own as a dissertation project.
'But when I realised the opportunity I had to present this portrait of strategic leadership - you know it's not a hagiography, I’m not in love with David Petraeus, but I think he does present a terrific role model for young people, for executives, for men and women.

   
Betrayal: Broadwell has two children with her radiologist husband, Scott, pictured left. Petraeus has been married to his wife Holly, pictured right, for 38 years and they have two grown children together.

Look of love? A photo in June 2011 shows Broadwell watching as Petraeus and Holly arrive for a Senate Select Intelligence Committee hearing on Petraeus' nomination to be director of the CIA.
'There's a great role model there who is values oriented, who speaks the truth to power, who shows great example of taking initiative and other qualities we should be all be interested in ourselves and promoting in others.
Broadwell said that she had presented Petreaus with a copy of her book but added that 'he says he hasn't read it'
She said: 'I sent him and his wife a copy and I know his wife, Holly Petraeus, read it and she had great things to say.
'He's tracking how the book is being received and as an academic mentor of mine, if you will, he's proud of me.

Insistence: Broadwell made the bizarre claim about not loving Petraeus while promoting his biography, 'All In'.
He agreed, gave her a business card and she made multiple visits to Afghanistan to interview him - before romance finally flourished.
Turning to their relationship, Broadwell said in the interview: 'Our rapport increased and he decided to make it more of an official relationship, treating me like a biographer.
'I was able to look through correspondence he exchange with his mentors over three decades as a young captain and major and I was able to trace how he was thinking, the evolution of his thought about counterinsurgency, about how forces train and equip and fight and on leadership.
'I was particularly interested in leadership'.


U.S. Gen. John Allen


top commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) and U.S. forces in Afghanistan
, during an interview with The Associated Press



   

Associated Press/Musadeq Sadeq, File - FILE - This July 22, 2012, file photo shows U.S. Gen. John Allen, top commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) and U.S. forces in Afghanistan, during an interview with The Associated Press in Kabul, Afghanistan. The Pentagon says Gen. John Allen is under investigation for alleged "inappropriate communications" with Jill Kelley, the woman who is said to have received threatening emails from Paula Broadwell, the woman with whom former CIA Director David Petraeus had an extramarital affair. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says the FBI referred the matter to the Pentagon on Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. Panetta says he ordered a Pentagon investigation of Allen on Monday. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq, File)

General investigated for emails to Petraeus friend

By ROBERT BURNS | Associated Press
PERTH, Australia (AP) — In a new twist to the Gen. David Petraeussex scandal, the Pentagon said Tuesday that the top American commander in Afghanistan, Gen. John Allen, is under investigationfor alleged "inappropriate communications" with a woman who is said to have received threatening emails from Paula Broadwell, the woman with whom Petraeus had an extramarital affair.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said in a written statement issued to reporters aboard his aircraft, en route from Honolulu to Perth, Australia, that the FBI referred the matter to the Pentagon on Sunday.
Panetta said that he ordered a Pentagon investigation of Allen on Monday. 
A senior defense official traveling with Panetta said Allen's communications were with Jill Kelley, who has been described as an unpaid social liaison at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., which is headquarters to the U.S. Central Command. She is not a U.S. government employee.
Kelley is said to have received threatening emails from Broadwell, who is Petraeus' biographer and who had an extramarital affair with Petraeus that reportedly began after he became CIA director in September 2011.
Petraeus resigned as CIA director on Friday. 
Allen, a four-star Marine general, succeeded Petraeus as the top American commander in Afghanistan in July 2011.
The senior official, who discussed the matter only on condition of anonymity because it is under investigation, said Panetta believed it was prudent to launch a Pentagon investigation, although the official would not explain the nature of Allen's problematic communications. 
The official said 20,000 to 30,000 pages of emails and other documents from Allen's communications with Kelley between 2010 and 2012 are under review. He would not say whether they involved sexual matters or whether they are thought to include unauthorized disclosures of classified information. He said he did not know whether Petraeus is mentioned in the emails.
"Gen. Allen disputes that he has engaged in any wrongdoing in this matter," the official said. He said Allen currently is in Washington.
Panetta said that while the matter is being investigated by the Defense Department Inspector General, Allen will remain in his post as commander of the International Security Assistance Force, based in Kabul. He praised Allen as having been instrumental in making progress in the war.
 


                        Spotlight on second woman in General David Petraeus Scandal  


                        New details emerge about the woman who allegedly got menacing emails from the general's mistress.



Associated Press/Cliff Owen, File - FILE - In this June 23, 2011, file photo, Gen. David Petraeus, center, walks with his wife Holly, left, past a seated Paula Broadwell, rear right, as he arrives to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee during a hearing on his nomination to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency on Capitol Hill in Washington. Petraeus quit Nov. 9, 2012, after acknowledging an extramarital relationship. As questions arise about the extramarital affair between Petraeus and his biographer, Paula Broadwell, she has remained quiet about details of their relationship. However, information has emerged about Jill Kelley, the woman who received the emails from Broadwell that led to the FBI’s discovery of Petraeus’ indiscretion. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)

    

Spotlight on 2nd woman in Petraeus case

New details emerge about the woman who allegedly got menacing emails from the general's mistress.

By ADAM GOLDMAN, ANNE FLAHERTY and KIMBERLY DOZIER | Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — As questions swirl about the extramarital affair that led to the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, the retired general and his biographer, Paula Broadwell, have been quiet about details of their relationship. However, information has emerged about the woman who received the emails from Broadwellthat led to the FBI's discovery of Petraeus' indiscretion.
A senior U.S. military official identified the second woman as Jill Kelley, 37, who lives in Tampa, Fla., and serves as an unpaid social liaison to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, where the military'sCentral Command and Special Operations Command are located.
In a statement Sunday, Kelley and her husband, Scott, said: "We and our family have been friends with Gen. Petraeus and his family for over five years. We respect his and his family's privacy and want the same for us and our three children." The military official who identified Kelley spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss the investigation. He said Kelley had received harassing emails from Broadwell, which led the FBI to examine her email account and eventually discover her relationship with Petraeus. The FBI contacted Petraeus and other intelligence officials, and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper asked Petraeus to resign. A former associate of Petraeus confirmed the target of the emails was Kelley, but said there was no affair between the two, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the retired general's private life. The associate, who has been in touch with Petraeus since his resignation, said Kelley and her husband were longtime friends of Petraeus and his wife, Holly.
Attempts to reach Kelley were not successful. Broadwell did not return phone calls or emails. The Petraeus news caught much of Washington by surprise and members of Congress said Sunday they want to know more details about the FBI investigation that revealed the extramarital affair between Petraeus and his biographer. They questioned when the retired general popped up in the FBI inquiry, whether national security was compromised and why they weren't told sooner. "We received no advanced notice. It was like a lightning bolt," Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, who heads the Senate Intelligence Committee, said on "Fox News Sunday." Petraeus, 60, quit Friday after acknowledging an extramarital relationship. He has been married 38 years to Holly Petraeus, with whom he has two adult children, including a son who led an infantry platoon in Afghanistan as an Army lieutenant.
Broadwell, a 40-year-old graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and an Army Reserve officer, is married with two young sons.
Petraeus' affair with Broadwell will be the subject of meetings Wednesday involving congressional intelligence committee leaders, FBI deputy director Sean Joyce and CIA deputy director Michael Morell.




 

  


A rare fish taken off Cabo San Lucas ends up getting stolen in bizarre tale

By: David Strege Saturday, November 10, 2012 11:00pm PST

A fish rarely seen by humans and weighing in at 300 pounds became the center of a bizarre fish story in Cabo San Lucas, where the "mystery" fish wound up getting stolen.
The fish was described by the Pisces Sportfishing Fleet blog as having a dorado-shaped head, tuna-type body, wahoo tail (with half of it missing) and a snapper color. Pisces eventually identified the fish as a louvar or Luvaras Imperialis, a species last seen in Cabo waters some 22 years ago.
The boatful of fishermen who captured the rare beast knew it was something special, yet it became the fish that got away--stolen from under their noses.
As related by Capt. Josue Moreno to Pisces, the Marina II headed out for a half day of fishing when the crew and fishing tourists came across a huge fish circling on the top of the water.
"I thought it was a red snapper or tuna," Moreno told Pisces. "So we went over to investigate and saw this really weird fish, like something we had never seen before. It was still alive, but almost dead, struggling to breathe. So we gaffed it and had a really hard time getting it onto the swimstep. The tourists on board were amazed and kept asking us what it was, but we had no idea."
The Marina II was said to have stopped to catch a few dorado before heading in to have the big, mystery fish weighed and filleted.
Only that's not exactly what happened. 
As Pisces Sportfishing Fleet found out on Tuesday, the tale Moreno told was a lie. 
The real story surfaced when Pisces spoke with angler Joe Estrada of San Antonio, Texas. He and some friends had chartered the boat Dr. Pescado II. Less than four miles from the Lighthouse off Cabo, theyspotted the mystery fish circling on top of the water, they gaffed it and they tied it onto the swimstep.
"We wanted to head back with the fish," Estrada told Pisces. "We knew it was an unusual catch." But the captain said, "the dorado bite is good, let's stay and fish and I will find somebody to take it back."
So, not wanting the fish to sit out in the sun while they were fishing, the captain radioed the Marina II, and its captain agreed to take the fish in.
"Our skipper, Oscar, told the other skipper to take it back for us and put it on ice. You can hear him saying that on our video," Estrada told Doug Olander of Sport Fishing
The video below shows how the fish was transferred from one boat to the other. The fish was hooked to a buoy. The Dr. Pescado II left it floating for the Marina II, which scooped up the fish and headed in to port.
It was the last Estrada and his fishing group saw of the fish. As you can see in the photo above, Capt. Moreno had a photo taken with the fish before immediately filleting and distributing it to people around the marina. When the Dr. Pescado II returned to port to check on the fish, it was long gone.
"I like the fact that everybody was fed," Estrada told Pisces. "I hate to see fish go to waste and I am glad that so many families got fed."
But he sure wishes he had been able to take a few fillets home with him.
"I found out that they are really good eating," Estrada told Sport Fishing. "And I love to cook fish. That was heartbreaking."
 Estrada told Pisces that his skipper Oscar "felt betrayed," though we can't help but wonder if Oscar might have gotten any of those fillets. Hmmm. 
See Estrada's entire YouTube video here. We start the video below at 1:25, right when they describe how they're going to hand the fish off. "Let it be known we found the fish...We caught this fish, the rarest fish in the world," you can hear someone say. And, appropriately, you also hear, "Adios." 

www.piscessportfishing.com
 We started off as a family owned and operated business out of the City of La Paz, Baja, Mexico in 1978 with one 28 ft boat. A couple of years later we moved to Cabo and since then we have grown to be the largest and most respected charter fleet in Mexico. To keep pace with the growth of a more sophisticated market we gradually added more vessels and can now offer everything from the basic Baja Panga to mega yachts. Still, the favorite of most Cabo visitors(28-31ft) standard cruisers, seaworthy, clean boat, with very experienced crews which are great value for money. Slightly larger(32-48 ft), newer model, vessels with more comfort like salons and air-conditioning. Over 50 ft Sportfishers usually being new high tech vessels with great speed and more range. Last but not least, the Luxury Yachts, most being multi-purpose - fishing, cruising, snorkeling, diving -ideal for those want to be pampered with the very best. What sets us apart are the relationships we form with our clients, long-term; our focus is service, value for money and experienced crews. We have a proven track record that keeps our guests returning year after year.

We have not seen one of these strange fish in twenty two years and back in those days we were baffled having no idea what it was, but described it as "having a dorado shape head, tuna type body, wahoo tail and snapper color". Now we know that this fish is a louvar or Luvaras Imperialis. Not much is known about this elusive fish and it is rarely seen by humans and it is extremely rare to see a live specimen, as this one was.  Captain Josue Moreno, a twenty year old native of Cabo San Lucas and captain of the 28 ft cruiser Marina, left the dock this morning with some tourists he had signed up for a half day of fishing. They headed out to the Pacific in hopes of catching some dorado and were six miles off of the Old Lighthouse, when they spotted something big on the surface of the water "I thought it was a red snapper or a tuna" he told us, "so we went over to investigate and saw this really weird fish, like something we had never seen before. It was still alive, but almost dead, struggling to breathe. So we gaffed it and had a really hard time getting it on to the swimstep. The tourists on board were amazed and kept asking us what it was, but we had no idea".  Once secured on the back of the boat, they carried on fishing and picked up a few doardo before heading back to the marina at 11.30. The fillet guys knew what it was; they remembered the one from years ago and wrote up the photo board with the correct name for the captain to get his picture. After doing a bit of research we see that his 300 lb specimen is about as big as they get and learned that the flesh is delicious being compared to halibut and even swordfish. This species spends its entire life in the open ocean with jellyfish being its main diet.

How to Devise Passwords That Drive Hackers Away

The New York Times
How to Devise Passwords That Drive Hackers Away
By NICOLE PERLROTH | New York Times 



Not long after I began writing about cybersecurity, I became a paranoid caricature of my former self. It’s hard to maintain peace of mind when hackers remind me every day, all day, just how easy it is to steal my personal data.
Within weeks, I set up unique, complex passwords for every Web site, enabled two-step authentication for my e-mail accounts, and even covered up my computer’s Web camera with a piece of masking tape — a precaution that invited ridicule from friends and co-workers who suggested it was time to get my head checked. But recent episodes offered vindication. I removed the webcam tape — after a friend convinced me that it was a little much — only to see its light turn green a few days later, suggesting someone was in my computer and watching. More recently, I received a text message from Google with the two-step verification code for my Gmail account. That’s the string of numbers Google sends after you correctly enter the password to your Gmail account, and it serves as a second password. (Do sign up for it.) The only problem was that I was not trying to get into my Gmail account. I was nowhere near a computer. Apparently, somebody else was. It is absurdly easy to get hacked. All it takes is clicking on one malicious link or attachment. Companies’ computer systems are attacked every day by hackers looking for passwords to sell on auctionlike black market sites where a single password can fetch $20. Hackers regularly exploit tools like John the Ripper, a free password-cracking program that use lists of commonly used passwords from breached sites and can test millions of passwords per second.
Chances are, most people will get hacked at some point in their lifetime. The best they can do is delay the inevitable by avoiding suspicious links, even from friends, and manage their passwords. Unfortunately, good password hygiene is like flossing — you know it’s important, but it takes effort. How do you possibly come up with different, hard-to-crack passwords for every single news, social network, e-commerce, banking, corporate and e-mail account and still remember them all? To answer that question, I called two of the most (justifiably) paranoid people I know, Jeremiah Grossman and Paul Kocher, to find out how they keep their information safe. Mr. Grossman was the first hacker to demonstrate how easily somebody can break into a computer’s webcam and microphone through a Web browser. He is now chief technology officer at WhiteHat Security, an Internet and network security firm, where he is frequently targeted by cybercriminals. Mr. Kocher, a well-known cryptographer, gained notice for clever hacks on security systems. He now runs Cryptography Research, a security firm that specializes in keeping systems hacker-resistant. Here were their tips:
FORGET THE DICTIONARY If your password can be found in a dictionary, you might as well not have one. “The worst passwords are dictionary words or a small number of insertions or changes to words that are in the dictionary,” said Mr. Kocher. Hackers will often test passwords from a dictionary or aggregated from breaches. If your password is not in that set, hackers will typically move on.
NEVER USE THE SAME PASSWORD TWICE People tend to use the same password across multiple sites, a fact hackers regularly exploit. While cracking into someone’s professional profile on LinkedIn might not have dire consequences, hackers will use that password to crack into, say, someone’s e-mail, bank, or brokerage account where more valuable financial and personal data is stored.
COME UP WITH A PASSPHRASE The longer your password, the longer it will take to crack. A password should ideally be 14 characters or more in length if you want to make it uncrackable by an attacker in less than 24 hours. Because longer passwords tend to be harder to remember, consider a passphrase, such as a favorite movie quote, song lyric, or poem, and string together only the first one or two letters of each word in the sentence.
OR JUST JAM ON YOUR KEYBOARD For sensitive accounts, Mr. Grossman says that instead of a passphrase, he will randomly jam on his keyboard, intermittently hitting the Shift and Alt keys, and copy the result into a text file which he stores on an encrypted, password-protected USB drive. “That way, if someone puts a gun to my head and demands to know my password, I can honestly say I don’t know it.”
STORE YOUR PASSWORDS SECURELY Do not store your passwords in your in-box or on your desktop. If malware infects your computer, you’re toast. Mr. Grossman stores his password file on an encrypted USB drive for which he has a long, complex password that he has memorized. He copies and pastes those passwords into accounts so that, in the event an attacker installs keystroke logging software on his computer, they cannot record the keystrokes to his password. Mr. Kocher takes a more old-fashioned approach: He keeps password hints, not the actual passwords, on a scrap of paper in his wallet. “I try to keep my most sensitive information off the Internet completely,” Mr. Kocher said.
A PASSWORD MANAGER? MAYBE Password-protection software lets you store all your usernames and passwords in one place. Some programs will even create strong passwords for you and automatically log you in to sites as long as you provide one master password. LastPassSplashDataand AgileBits offer password management software for Windows, Macs and mobile devices. But consider yourself warned: Mr. Kocher said he did not use the software because even with encryption, it still lived on the computer itself. “If someone steals my computer, I’ve lost my passwords.” Mr. Grossman said he did not trust the software because he didn’t write it. Indeed, at a security conference in Amsterdam earlier this year, hackers demonstrated how easily the cryptography used by many popular mobile password managers could be cracked.
IGNORE SECURITY QUESTIONS There is a limited set of answers to questions like “What is your favorite color?” and most answers to questions like “What middle school did you attend?” can be found on the Internet. Hackers use that information to reset your password and take control of your account. Earlier this year, a hacker claimed he was able to crack into Mitt Romney’s Hotmail and Dropbox accounts using the name of his favorite pet. A better approach would be to enter a password hint that has nothing to do with the question itself. For example, if the security question asks for the name of the hospital in which you were born, your answer might be: “Your favorite song lyric.”
USE DIFFERENT BROWSERS Mr. Grossman makes a point of using different Web browsers for different activities. “Pick one browser for ‘promiscuous’ browsing: online forums, news sites, blogs — anything you don’t consider important,” he said. “When you’re online banking or checking e-mail, fire up a secondary Web browser, then shut it down.” That way, if your browser catches an infection when you accidentally stumble on an X-rated site, your bank account is not necessarily compromised. As for which browser to use for which activities, a study last year by Accuvant Labs of Web browsers — including Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Microsoft Internet Explorer — found that Chrome was the least susceptible to attacks.
SHARE CAUTIOUSLY “You are your e-mail address and your password,” Mr. Kocher emphasized. Whenever possible, he will not register for online accounts using his real e-mail address. Instead he will use “throwaway” e-mail addresses, like those offered by 10minutemail.com. Users register and confirm an online account, which self-destructs 10 minutes later. Mr. Grossman said he often warned people to treat anything they typed or shared online as public record.
“At some point, you will get hacked — it’s only a matter of time,” warned Mr. Grossman. “If that’s unacceptable to you, don’t put it online.”

Proud to Be One of the World's Worst Hotels

By DRAGANA JOVANOVIC Nov. 12, 2012


The good news? This hotel is a bargain, no room costs more 25 euros per night. The bad news: You get what you pay for. It may be the worst hotel in the world.

The people who own the Hans Brinker Budget Hostel in Amsterdam wrote the book on the subject with a simple idea in mind: If you were warned in advance, you can't complain after you arrive. Some of the Hans Brinker's advertising slogans include: "It can't get any worse. But we'll do our best" or "Improve your immune system – stay at Hans Brinker!" And this "honest" humorous approach works, if you judge by the high percentage of the hotel's 511 beds in 127 rooms that are occupied these days. 

The hotel's target clientele are mostly students and backpackers, who can appreciate the sarcastic humor and the price. The Hans Brinker ads make extremely modest claims: "Now with beds in every room" or "Now more rooms without a window," to go with the modest rate. 
And cheapness isn't the only virtue on display at the Hans Brinker Budget Hostel, there's also so-called ecological correctness. So the hotel's broken elevators becomes an "eco-friendly elevator"-- the stairs. No hot water in the shower? It keeps water consumption environmentally sound. No towels? Drying yourself off with the curtains saves on washing and helps save the planet. "It's an experience," says Tijmen Receveur, a manager at Hans Brinker. "Most of our guests are pleasantly surprised when they arrive at the hotel. They love our humor and sarcasm and they have diminished their expectations to less than nothing." A "legal note" posted on the hotel's website states that guests book there "at their own risk and will not hold the hotel liable for food poisoning, mental breakdowns, terminal illness, lost limbs, radiation poisoning, certain diseases associated with the 18th century, plague, etcetera."

"I've stayed in a lot of crummy places, but I like to think the Hans Brinker is the best of the worst," says Eleonor, a Belgian student, who stayed there recently. "It's the perfect place for teenage travelers or people in their twenties, who are likely to fall asleep in one of the bars around the corner anyway." Still, wacky humor can only take you so far, and recent comments on TripAdvisor indicate some guests may have forgotten the basis of their bargain: you get what you pay for, even or especially, at "The Worst Hotel in the World." Recent comments range from "For the reputation of the world's worst hotel it wasn't as bad as I thought. Pretty scabby still, very basic. The bathroom was atrocious! The winner for it was the location though. I wouldn't say don't stay there, but I would never stay there ever again" to the more flattering "Hans Brinker is a fun filled hostel with great facilities, friendly staff and great location. You will not be disappointed!"

Either way, you've been warned.
























Colorado investigating reports of machines changing Romney votes to Obama

November 6, 2012
The Republican party of Pueblo, Colorado, has begun an investigation into reports that voting machines have been switching voters' selections.
The Pueblo GOP received at least a dozen complaints about voting machines changing votes for Mitt Romney, Republican nominee, into votes for Barack Obama, the incumbent.
Speaking to local media outlet, KRDO, Gilbert Ortiz, Pueblo County clerk and recorder said:
"..Just like when you're texting on your cell phone or using any other touchscreen technology, there's a chance  that you might think your finger is touching one area and it's actually touching another...."
Interactive: US inner circles of power
Meet the top consultants, advisers, and pollsters behind Barack Obama and Mitt Romney's candidacies.
Mohammed Haddad and Hasan Salim Patel Last Modified: 31 Oct 2012 10:45


US votes in tight presidential race
Long lines reported in some states as millions of voters take to the polls after a grueling campaign.
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2012 20:20
After a seemingly endless presidential campaign, voters in the United States are going to the polls to decide whether to give president Barack Obama a second term or replace him with his Republican challenger, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.
Voters in dozens of states were lined up before dawn, with lengthy lines and hour-long waits reported in many places. In New York and New Jersey, eastern states battered last week by Hurricane Sandy, voters queued outside of tents and other makeshift polling places.
There were scattered reports of irregularities across the country, particularly from voters who said they were asked to show identification while waiting in line. In Pennsylvania, a judge ordered Republicans to stop demanding ID from voters outside a polling station.
Voting machines also broke down in a number of polling stations. One man in Pennsylvania posted a video of a machine which did not let him vote for Obama, apparently a malfunction.
Romney voted on Tuesday morning near his home in Belmont, Massachusetts. From there he planned to hit the campaign trail, a rarity for presidential candidates on Election Day; his campaign has scheduled events in Pennsylvania and the battleground state of Ohio.
Obama voted more than a week ago in his hometown of Chicago, part of a campaign to encourage his supporters to take advantage of early voting. Some 30 million Americans have already voted, a record number.
The president plans to spend the day at his headquarters in the city, and has no plans to hit the campaign trail, though he did make phone calls to volunteers.
"[I] want to say to Governor Romney, congratulations on a spirited campaign," he told reporters on Tuesday morning. "We feel confident we've got the votes to win, but it's going to depend ultimately on whether those votes turn out."
His vice president, Joe Biden, cast his ballot in the early morning hours in his home state of Delaware. He will travel to Chicago in the afternoon to watch the results with Obama.
Tuesday's vote caps off a grueling campaign that became the most expensive in history: Candidates and outside groups spent some $2.6bn on the presidential race alone.
Both candidates have spent the last few weeks barnstorming the handful of "swing states" which will decide the election. Obama made campaign stops on Monday in Wisconsin, Iowa and Ohio, while Romney visited New Hampshire, Florida, Ohio and Virginia.
Obama used his final campaign stop to remind voters of his accomplishments: the economy's slow recovery from recession, the rescue of the American auto industry, and the end of the war in Iraq, among other things.
He sought to sharpen the contrast between his policies and those of his opponent.
"It's not just a choice between two candidates and two parties, it's a choice between two different visions for America," he said.
Obama has not laid out a detailed agenda for his second term, and Romney has seized on that in his final speeches, warning voters that the president will simply repeat his policies from the past four years - which the Republican nominee described as a failure.
"His plan for the next four years is to take all the ideas from the first term - the stimulus, the borrowing, Obamacare, all the rest - and do them over again," Romney said, referring to the president's $787bn economic stimulus package and his health care reforms.
"He calls that ‘Forward.’ I call it ‘Forewarned,'" the former governor quipped.
Polls positive for Obama
The last round of national polls heading into the vote were good news for the president. A Pew Research Center poll showed him leading Romney by three points, 48 per cent to 45 per cent. The same poll had them tied last week.
Two other polls showed a closer race: A Washington Post-ABC News poll had Obama leading by one point, 49 per cent to 48 per cent; and a CNN poll had the candidates tied with 49 per cent of the vote.
All three of those results were within the polls' margins of error. 
But the popular vote will not decide the outcome. States are apportioned a number of electoral votes based on their population, and the candidate who wins a majority - 270 - becomes president. And the final state polls showed the president leading in most of the crucial swing states.
Surveys in Ohio have had Obama leading by anywhere from three to five points. A victory there would mean Romney would have to win at least six of the remaining eight battleground states, which seems unlikely: Obama led every poll conducted in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, Virginia and Wisconsin; Romney's lone bright spot was North Carolina, where he looks poised to win by a narrow margin.
The other two battlegrounds, Colorado and Florida, seem too close to predict, with polls showing a range of possible outcomes.
In Dixville Notch, New Hampshire, a small village which traditionally opens its polling places just after midnight - the first vote in the nation - Romney and Obama tied, 5-5. It was the first tie in more than 50 years of midnight voting in the town, which is not a bellwether for the national result.





Scenes from Election Day: America heads to the polls

By Liz Goodwin, Yahoo! News | The Ticket 

A polling station in Los Angeles, California Tuesday. Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)Obama mural in Philadelphia. (Tim Miller)

The most expensive presidential race in American history—some $2.6 billion was spent—is finally coming to an end. The barrage of political ads is quieting, and voters now have the chance to speak.
Polls close in Virginia, Indiana, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina and Vermont at 7 PM ET, with other states following close behind. Alaska's polling stations, the last to close, finally shutter at 1 AM Wednesday. In the meantime, we'll be gathering all the latest news about the candidates, polling stations and swing states here.
3:01 PM: If you thought it was a hassle for you to vote today, we'd like you to meet Galicia Malone. The 21-year-old first-time voter from Illinois managed to cast her ballot today even though she was in labor.
2:50 PM: Check out this series of photos of voters in Queens, who took a break from trying to salvage their Sandy-hit homes to vote in makeshift voting stations today.
2:40 PM: Guess they're not too nervous for a big lunch. Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney grabbed lunch at a Wendy's in a Cleveland suburb after stopping by a campaign office. Here's a photo of them greeting the staff. Joe Biden, meanwhile, grabbed lunch at a local restaurant in Sterling, Virginia, where he had a Cobb salad.
2:38 PM: For the third day in a row, Joe Biden and Mitt Romney's planes passed each other on the tarmac. This time, in Cleveland.
2:30 PM: A judge has ordered officials to cover up the Obama mural in a Philadelphia polling placethat raised controversy earlier today.
1:20 PM: An estimated 50 million eligible Americans will not vote today. Here's why.
1:00 PM: Better late than never? Google searches for "who's running for president" spiked in November.
12:25 PM: You might want to think twice before posting your filled out ballot to Facebook, Flickr, or Instagram. Propublica reports that some states have laws that prohibit people from showing their ballots to anyone. Violating the rule can result in having your ballot thrown out. See if it's legal in your state at the Citizen Media Law Project site.
12:18 PM: In Washington D.C., There are reports that some lines are so long at polling sites that people are giving up on voting. How was your polling place? Let us know in the comments.
12 PM: Republican National Committee official Tim Miller is complaining on Twitter that a Philadelphia polling place has put up voting booths right next to a mural of Obama. The location of the polling site is 35th ward-D18 Franklin School, according to the Weekly Standard. Miller wrote that the Pennsylvania GOP has filed a complaint. Electioneering is not allowed within 10 feet of a polling place. The Philadelphia City Commissioners' office is looking into the complaints.
11:40 AM: Elections officials in Pinellas county in Florida mistakenly sent hundreds of robocalls telling voters they had until 7:00 PM Wednesday to vote, the Tampa Bay Times reports. (The last polls close at 8 PM Tuesday in the state.) Elections officials sent a second message to alert voters who received the calls of the mistake. A majority of the county voted Democratic in 2008.
11 AM: A Chrysler official wrote on Twitter that the car company has given its entire workforce the day off to vote. (He added that the auto workers union and Chrysler, GM and Ford have agreed that workers get the day off to vote for years.) Late last month the company had strongly denied the accuracy of an ad from Mitt Romney's campaign stating that the automaker was moving its Jeep production to China. The company, in fact, said it recently added 1,100 jobs in the swing state of Ohio, where one in eight jobs is connected to the auto industry.
10 AM: All four major candidates have cast their ballots. President Barack Obama voted weeks ago in Chicago as part of his campaign's push to get their supporters to vote early in states that allow it. Voting on Tuesday: Vice President Joe Biden, at a Wilmington, Del., high school; Gov. Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, near their Belmont, Mass., home; and Paul Ryan cast his ballot in his hometown of Janesville, Wis.
9:40 AM: The first election results are in—and it's a tie. In New Hampshire, Dixville Notch's 10 registered votes split evenly 5-5 between Romney and Obama. The small village has cast its ballots at midnight since 1960, giving political junkies an early look at how candidates are faring in the Granite State. President Obama carried the small village in 2008, but Dixville Notch went to George W. Bush in both 2000 and 2004.