Four More Taiwanese Drug Traffickers Sentenced to Death in Indonesia

Four More Taiwanese Drug Traffickers Sentenced to Death in Indonesia
Photo Credit: Reuters/達志影像

What you need to know

The four could join the more than 40 individuals who could be executed by the end of 2017.

Media reports yesterday revealed that four more Taiwanese charged with drug trafficking were sentenced to death in Indonesia on Aug 24.

The four men were found in possession of 26 kg of methamphetamine, also known as "ice" or crystal meth, in November 2015. The men can still appeal the sentence in a higher court.

In late January, three Taiwanese men were also sentenced to death for drug trafficking. This was a final verdict and the men are looking to make an extraordinary appeal.

Five Taiwanese nationals were arrested on Aug. 18 in northern Jakarta in connection with the discovery of 60 kg of methamphetamine, and three other Taiwanese men were charged with drug trafficking on May 20. Both cases have yet to be decided in court.

Indonesia is known for executing foreign nationals who bring drugs into the country, which is reportedly Southeast Asia’s biggest drug market, with an estimated 4.5 million users.

President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) reinstated capital punishment after taking office in 2014 and implemented a large-scale “War on Drugs.” The number of drug-related sentences and executions, particularly of foreigners, has increased under his leadership.

Phelim Kine, deputy director of Human Rights Watch's Asia division, told The News Lens International in June that Indonesia’s “tragically misguided and wrongheaded” drugs policy could see more than 40 people executed by the end of 2017.

Edited by J. Michael Cole