May 31, 2005


I'm sure most of you have heard/read about the story of Schapelle Corby, the Austrailian woman convicted of drug trafficing and sentenced to 20 years in a Bali prison...

To me this story is just heart breaking. Whether she's guilty or not isn't the point. Being sentenced to 20 years for a first offense is completely inappropriate for the crime committed.

For a comparison, here are America's current mandatory sentencing laws:

Mandatory minimum sentences for first time drug offenders:
Type of drug Five Year Sentence Without Parole Ten Year Sentence Without Parole
LSD 1 gram 10 grams
Marijuana 100 plants/100 kilos 1000 plants/1000 kilos
Crack cocaine 5 grams 50 grams
Powder cocaine 500 grams 5 kilos
Heroin 100 grams 1 kilo
Methamphetamine 10 grams 100 grams
PCP 10 grams 100 grams

Read more about it here.

What strikes me is that the Indonesian courts want to re-try Corby. They think the sentence is too light! Some want to give her the death penalty!!

I know a lot has been said of the America's mandatory drug laws: they don't work, they're racist, etc. But had Corby been in America she would have gotten far less than 20 years; 5 at the most, possibly less. She only had 4.1 kgs of pot on her.

American prisons are not good places to be. But at least you're well fed and given adequate, albeit spatan facilities for bathing and hygiene needs. There's more human rights violations in a week at some foreign prisons than in two years at G.B. in Cuba.

Maybe its only because she's a young white female from a western culture that I feel so bad for her. But something like this is my worst nightmare.

When I went to Saudi Arabia two summers ago, I had to fill out a passport/visa ID entrance card. The card read: "Welcome to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Death to all drug traffickers."

Whereupon I immediately ditched the bottle of vitamins I had in my duffle bag into the nearest trash recepticle.....

There has been talk of a prisoner exchange. Not sure if that going to happen though.

I think if people really want her out, they're going to have to pull some Ross Perot shit. Unfortunately, its not likely.

So to conclude: Don't do drugs! And for God's sake don't transport them to another country!!!! And be thankfull that you live in America (or a reasonable facsimile).

No comments: