British Woman On Death Row In Indonesia Calls Bali Nine Execution ‘Senseless,’ Praises Chan & Sukumaran For ‘Changing Lives’

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IN PHOTO: Lindsay Sandiford (R) of Britain, accompanied by her translator, reacts as she listens to the judge during a trial in Denpasar at the Indonesian resort island of Bali January 22, 2013. Indonesia's court sentenced death for Sandiford on Tuesday for 4.79 kilograms (11 lbs) of cocaine in the lining of her suitcase upon arrival from Bangkok, media reported. REUTERS/Stringer

Lindsay Sandiford, a British woman on death row in Indonesia, said that Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran had touched the lives of a great many people as they helped fellow prisoners. Rehabilitate. She called the execution as “senseless, brutal deaths.”

Chan and Sukumaran were executed at 00:35 (local time) in Besi prison on the island of Nusakambangan on April 29. Indonesia did not pay attention to repeated appeals by Australian authorities to delay the execution.

Sandiford released a statement from Kerobokan Prison in Bali through her lawyer. The 58-year-old said that she was “deeply saddened” by the execution of Sukumaran and her dear friend, Chan. “Many things have been said about whether Andrew and Myuran deserved to die for their crimes,” she said in the statement, “What I can say is that the Andrew and Myuran I knew were men who did good and touched the lives of a great many people, including myself.”

The Gloucestershire woman said that she had been in Kerobokan prison together with Chan who was her “close friend and confidante.” She said that Chan counselled and helped her through exceptionally difficult times after she had been sentenced to death in 2013.

Sandiford said that Chan and Sukumaran had used their time in Kerobokan to make life better for everyone around them. It was those two Australian men who introduced the concept of rehabilitation to a prison that had never had it before. Those two organised painting classes, cookery classes and computer classes, and gave practical help to make sure the poorest prisoners had food, clothing and essentials, she added.

According to Sandiford, Chan and Sukumaran also made sure that their inmates had access to hospital services and health care when they fell sick. She said that the prison budget did not cover those services.

Sandiford further said that the men shot dead on April 29 had been “reformed.” Those “good men” transformed the lives of people around them. She added that their senseless, brutal deaths would “leave the world a poorer place.”

Sandiford was sentenced to death after she had been found with cocaine worth more than AUD 3 million. She was arrested after she had arrived in Bali from Bangkok in May 2012.

Contact the writer: s.mukhopadhyay@ibtimes.com.au

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