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Execution of Filipina, other convicts won’t be this week, says Indon exec

/ 12:26 PM March 28, 2015
Philippine convicted drug smuggler on death row Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso, is escorted by Indonesian police as she arrives at the court in Sleman in central Java island for a hearing of judicial review on March 3, 2015 after a plea for clemency was rejected by Indonesian President Joko Widodo. AFP

Philippine convicted drug smuggler on death row Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso, is escorted by Indonesian police as she arrives at the court in Sleman in central Java island for a hearing of judicial review on March 3, 2015 after a plea for clemency was rejected by Indonesian President Joko Widodo. AFP

JAKARTA, Indonesia–The Supreme Court guaranteed on Friday that all justices would expedite hearings on case-review petitions filed by several convicts on death row, as the international community was observing the process.

The court decided on Wednesday to reject a second case review petition filed by Philippine national Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso, a drug convict in the second batch of executions to take place.

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Two other drug convicts – Serge Areski Atlaoui of France and Martin Anderson alias Belo of Ghana – are still challenging their death penalty rulings via case-review petitions.

Attorney General Muhammad Prasetyo praised the court’s decision to reject Veloso’s second case review petition, adding that the decision helped clear the way for the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) to carry out the second batch of executions.

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Supreme Court spokesman, justice Suhadi, said hearings in lower courts took up most of the time in the case-review process.

Suhadi later pledged that all court justices handling the cases would prioritize them.

“It is automatic. All justices know what to do [in prioritizing] those cases because it has drawn so much public attention,” he said on Friday. “Rest assured, we are working professionally.”

The Criminal Law Procedures Code stipulates that a case review should be filed first with a lower court, which will later hear and study whether the petition meets all the requirements.

A case review can only be considered if new evidence or conflicting facts are found, or if judges are deemed to have erred in applying the law.

The first hearing of Veloso’s second case review petition took place at the Sleman District Court on March 3. The lower court later submitted the documents to the Supreme Court on March 12.

Atlaouli’s case review petition was first heard at the Tangerang District Court on March 11, however, the court has adjourned the hearing to March 25. The first hearing of Anderson’s case review took place at the South Jakarta District Court on March 19.

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Prasetyo expressed hope that court proceedings could be wrapped up soon so the AGO could announce the dates of the executions.

Veloso, Anderson and Atlaoui are three of 10 convicts set to be executed in the near future on Nusakambangan prison island near Cilacap, Central Java.

The other drug convicts facing imminent execution are Bali Nine duo Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan of Australia, Rodrigo Gularte of Brazil, Zainal Abidin of Indonesia and Raheem Agbaje Salami of Nigeria. Also slated to be executed are three convicted murderers: Syofial alias Iyen bin Azwar, Harun bin Ajis and Sargawi alias Ali bin Sanusi, all from Indonesia.

Separately, Vice President Jusuf Kalla urged the public to wait for the AGO, which has authority over the executions, to decide when the executions would take place.

AGO spokesman Tony Spontana said it would take a while before the executions could take place.

“I can assure you it will not be this week. I’m not sure if it will be this month. We must wait.”

Meanwhile, House of Representatives Commission III overseeing laws and human rights checked Nusa Kambangan prison island to see if it was ready to host the executions.

Commission III chairman Azis Syamsudin said after the inspection that the prison was prepared and that it was only a matter of time before the executions would take place.

“All preparations for the executions of the drug convicts are complete, but the prosecutors are still waiting for the completion of the legal process,” he said.

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TAGS: Attorney General’s Office, convict, death row, Drug Smuggling, Execution, expedite, firing squad, Indonesia, Justice, Mary Jane Fiesta Veloso, Muhammad Prasetyo, plea
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