No other Filipino in death row in Indonesia: PH embassy

BALI, IndonesiaAside from Mary Jane Veloso, no other Filipino is in death row in Indonesia, according to the Philippine Embassy.

The clarification was made after Philippine Ambassador to Indonesia Lee Hiong Tan Wee informed a group of Filipino journalists here on Wednesday that another Filipina in Indonesia was sentenced to death due to a drug-related case.

The Philippine embassy in Jakarta would like to clarify that there is no Filipino sentenced to the death penalty in Semarang, Indonesia, the statement read.

The only Filipino that has been sentenced to death in Indonesia is Ms. Mary Jane Veloso who is presently detained in Yogyakarta, not in Semarang, it added.

Last month, Veloso's family visited Mary Jane in her detention through the help of the Philippine Embassy.

The embassy said Mary Jane was in good condition and had even expressed her gratitude in seeing her family.

The Department of Foreign Affairs, the Philippine embassy and its legal counsel will continue to assist Ms. Veloso and her family in accordance with Philippine and Indonesian law, it added.

Veloso was arrested and sentenced to death for allegedly smuggling illegal drugs in 2010 but was spared from the gallows after former Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono approved a moratorium on capital punishment.

She was set again to be executed in 2015 but was granted reprieve after her alleged trafficker had surrendered to the police.

Veloso claimed she had no idea that the suitcase given to her by her recruiters contained 2.6 kilograms of heroin.

In a separate statement, the embassy also clarified that the Filipina mentioned by Wee in Semarang only got a life sentence and not death sentence.

The Filipino in Semarang was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2011. The embassy has been assisting to reduce her sentence to fixed-term imprisonment, according to embassy's first statement.

Wee told the Filipino media covering President Rodrigo R. Duterte's attendance in the ASEAN Leaders' gathering here that he learned about the Filipino in Semarang only last week.

I'm not really aware of the details. I just learned about it last week, Wee, who assumed office only four months ago, said. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency