Chief justice says Corby suffers from depression

Chief justice says Corby suffers from depression

Schapelle Corby. (ANTARA/Nyoman Budhiana)

"The President has indeed asked for an advice from the chief justice."
Surabaya (ANTARA News) - One of the reasons why President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has given a clemency to Australian Schapelle Leigh Corby is because the drug convict is suffering from depression, according to chief justice Hatta Ali.

He said here on Friday that "the President has indeed asked for an advice from the chief justice before giving the clemency and the chief justice has given three opinions which are later found to be used for consideration by the President to give the clemency."

He said the three opinions are Corby is now suffering from a serious depression and needs a psychiatrist and she still feels not guilty and believed that the drug had been placed by an unknown person while the Australian police did not have any drug record about Corby.

"Even the Australian police have given a guarantee that Corby is not a drug user or dealer as she was a beautician student. Those are the three opinions that have been presented to the President," he said.

Based on the opinions, he said, President Yudhoyono finally gave Corby a clemency by cutting her sentence by five years.

Corby was sentenced to 20 years for smuggling 4.2 kilograms of marijuana on October 8, 2004 and with the clemency her sentence became 15 years.

In a law dialogue at the state University of Airlangga, Hatta also said that the MA advice came from the old chief justice.

He said the advice was given on July 22, 2011 while he only assumed his post as of March 1, 2012.

Regarding the clemency Hatta said that "it is the constitutional right of the President based on the 1945 Constitution but it is given after the President has asked for an advice from the Supreme Court and the ministry of law and human rights."

"The problem is that the humanitarian reason has been made into a political polemic," he said.

The clemency meanwhile ran against the government`s recent decision to tighten requirements for remissions for corruption and drug convicts and so this has been made into a central point for use in the polemic.

"What is clear is that the opinion is not political but humanitarian. Besides, a President`s decision to give a clemency, abolition or amnesty is guaranteed by the Constitution. Indeed abolition and amnesty are political," he said.