Thursday 21st of October 2021

Corby Blues

Anyone out there a lawyer? If Schapelle is innocent, could she sue Qantas for not providing the necessary security on the luggage for which they are responsible while in transit? If the evidence is about to be destroyed by the Indonesian justice system, can they do this before the appeal?

Innocent or guilty...

Is Ms Corby innocent?

To some extend this is not the question that matters. Leaving all emotional polemics aside, what is frightening is that Ms Corby has been tried by a primitive justice system that condemns before being judged or investigated. Like all justice system, including our own, this system carries many flaws. But in this case the flaws are loaded against the innocent. The prosecution's work is easy:

A bag of drugs (marijuana) was found in Ms Corby's luggage.
Ms Corby admitted that the bag was hers.

Simple. Hang the culprit by the thumbs for the rest of her life because the laws say so, and after a lengthy court case it takes more than three hours of tedious verdict to say this, in which witnesses for the defendant don't rate a mention.


A bag of drugs (marijuana) was found in Ms Corby's luggage.
Ms Corby admitted that the bag was hers...

At this stage reasonable people of good will should start ringing alarm bells.

The timing at which the accused said that the "bag was hers" as stated in the verdict is crucial. Did she admit that the bag of hash inside the boogy board bag was hers or that the"boogy board bag was hers?" Was this a situation in which the timing of the response is skewed due to the difference and comprehension of language?

Another damning piece of evidence is that Ms Corby recognized more or less straight away that the transparent bag contained marijuana, meaning that she knew what it was. Is this a condemning evidence or "have we not all come into visual contact, real or on television, with the image of loose leaves being associated with the word marijuana?"

Ms corby also does not appear to be foolish enough not to conceal the stuff better than that if she was to "carry" the drugs.


We all know that what is, can often be manipulated to suit a purpose. In Ms Corby case the evidence was not investigated as to its origins, its destination and the possible variations in weight of the luggage between airports. Nor was it fingerprint-analysed or DNA tested to "prove" an association beyond reasonable doubt between the hash and Ms Corby.

Strangely, luminaries in our government, were prompt in providing extraordinary cash and forensic assistance in regard to the Bali bombing and the Tsunami disaster, even providing information to the Indonesian police in regard to the "Bali 9" while in the case of Ms Corby our federal police commissioner DISMISSED PUBLICLY the possibility of "baggage handlers tempering" while there was a concurrent SECRET INVESTIGATION IN THIS AREA that found contrary results to his utterance... Would our police commissioner make the same public comment if it had been his daughter in the docks?

In the same breath of saying that "the government has done all it can" Mr Downer also speaks of not doing and saying certain things in Australia because of "contempt of court" while the chief judge in Indonesia had no trouble talking to the media about his hanging methods in clear breach of contempt of his own court.

The Media role in this affair is quite psychophrenic. On one hand there is the expression of compassion and the possibility of a "pretty" innocent being imprisoned for a bloody long time, on the other hand the media has dug deep in the mud to stir alleged doubts about the Corby family. And from what Gus hears on the grapevine this is not the end of that. Some (a few only, in similar proportion to the public at large) journalists believe that she is guilty. Stuff what those journalists think! Journalists have shown to be a mostly sorry lot in regard to the BIG porkies thrown at them in regard to the war in Iraq, and I would be the last person to "believe" what a journalist says unless I had the original source of information in my hot little hands, or only if proper forensic evidence was brought forward.

In regard to the federal investigation into drugs transfers between airport in Australia (and between Australia and overseas for that matter), in regard to some other people recorded to having found some drug in their luggage in Bali and having been told by the Consulate to "keep quiet, shove it down the toilet" and "do not call the police" there is enough doubt in the circumstances, to enforce a not guilty verdict against Ms Corby whether she is innocent or not

In this , the federal government has muffed its responsibility of care apart from providing financial "assistance" (which is "undisclosed"). The foreign affairs department acknowledges there are about 90 Australians in that situation and that there is little it can do. Hey why not this: Qantas could provide an affidavit in which it would take the responsibility for the transfer of the drugs though accidental means yet to be investigated and exonerate Ms Corby for it. Porkies will fly before this happens because it would open an honest can of worms where legal eagles would feast on.

Yet when luggage is lost or tampered with, there is a LIMITED indemnity as per the contract written on the ticket. I think Ms Corby has the right to ask for such a limited indemnity from Qantas. Then that indemnity would "become evidence' that her luggage was tempered with.

As far as the Bali 9 are concerned it was, in Gus's view, irresponsible for our government to provide information about Australian citizens in another country in which they would get a death sentence while in Australia the same misdemeanor would attract 10 to 15 years. Another aspect of that case is that although the age of reason is seven, the age of "total adult comprehension" as mentioned in another of gus' blog before, is 25 years of age. Thus the "ratting" by the Australian police was done on "kids" rather than on adult in full understanding of their responsibilities.

Believe me I am not trying here to support drug pushers, drug couriers or drugs per say... But I ask why is there a "need" for drugs in most if not all societies and that most societies have "legal" drugs, including coffee (caffeine). Show me a society whose individuals do not use ANY drugs and I will show you the void...

The modern American armies (from US Defence Department papers on soldiers in the future) rely and will rely more and more on "drugs" whether these are legal or not. In older days, many armies used to lace the drinks, usually wine, with substances (drugs) that lowered soldiers libido to nil...

The complexity of the problem here is that the prosecution in Indonesia goes with simplistic circumstantial evidence and it could be any of us out there in the dock. Could it not? Is there so much drug sloshing from airport to airport. What about weapons? Bombs? This shows that security and controls at airports are inefficient and full of holes.

A frightening prospect...

Re: Innocent or guilty?

No Gus you have merely stated the obvious.

Boycott Qantas instead

I think this is an interesting question, Gus, but for other reasons than proving her innocence. It seems to me that many of the general public have taken the view that Corby is innocent as a reason to racially attack Indonesians. As much as the poor girl's trial seemed (via Australian media) to be desperately unfair, the result has been a reaction to all things Balinese and Indonesian

With calls for tourist boycotts of Indonesia this case will affect more than just the lives of a Gold Coast family. It will affect the already poor people of Bali whose livelihood depends on the tourist dollar.

I think the generalisation associated with saying the issue is Indonesia's fault is incredibly dangerous. It condones a blatant form of racism. If the trial was not fair then it is the Balinese court's fault and probably the government's as well. Not the Balinese people's.

If we can take take our anger out on the court system (If Corby is innocent) we also need to remember baggage handlers. Follow the Corby families lead and boycott Qantas

We also need to question how the Australian media was involved in the case. If Corby had been tried in Australia and the media had conducted themselves the same way, they would have been held in contempt. All the coverage needed was a token dingo. As with Lindy the media had their mind made up from the beginning about Corby's innocence (and I'm not saying she is not). I just can't believe that we would sit here in this forum criticising the media for their portrayal of John Howard and turn around and believe everything it tells us when it comes to an alleged drug smuggler. Information sources in this day and age should always be viewed critically.

I would say a judge would be very protective of their courtroom and resent the intrusion and sensationalism of the Australian media. Maybe their 'conviction' (sorry about the pun) to bring down a verdict exempt from Australian media pressure could have tainted their judgement??

we do support pushers

The alcohol industry and the hotel industry does just that and so does the cigarette industry.

The Federal and State government supports the drug industry.

Re Innocent or not

Hey all,

How about looking at the decision from a factual point of view?

The fact is that the judge involved has never found a person charged with a drug offence to be innocent. As such how could any action by any person other than someone in the Indonesian government make any difference? It has been a circus but the result could not have been any other because of the judge's record on such issues.

Perhaps we should also look at who raised the issue with the media and invited them in. Also who made deals with the media for exclusive interviews.

There are about 130 Australians involved in court or in jail in overseas countries yet this young lady gets all the spotlight. Is that an accident? Or a campaign by her supporters?

As for the trial not being fair. I'm sorry but, under Indonesian law, it was fair. The onus in their system is to prove innocence as opposed to our system which supposedly requires the prosecution to prove guilt. The trial was not held under our system so how can we say the result was fair or not? We can judge if WE as individuals think it was fair or whether it would have been fair if tried under our system and the answer there would be NO it wasn't.

If the trial was held in Australia I still can't see any proof that someone else put the marijuana in the bag. There are several issues half raised but not proven which may allow reasonable doubt in Australia but that is irrelevant as it was not an offence committed here.

Naomi's comment about boycotting Qantas is also a dangerous generalisation. What does boycotting Bali or Qantas have to do with the case and result? Are we assuming that because there is evidence of baggage handling abuse that Qantas therefore must be responsible for the young lady's sentence? If you look at it both suggestions make no sense and is an emotional response rather than one based on evidence, or lack of such.

It is not a matter of boycotting either Bali or Qantas surely. Rather it's a choice we make as travellers. If we don't trust Indonesia's legal system then don't go there. If we doubt Qantas's security then don't fly Qantas. Which airline would you prefer? The reality is most airlines in Australia have far less security than Qantas simply because Qantas operates mainly in major centres and has more focus on security than other destinations.

As for Gus's question about drugs, all societies throughout history have sought them, in any form. It is only a matter of timing whether any particular drug is deemed legal or illegal. Let's not be precious about drug use as everybody on this site would have or currently does use them. Be it legal or illegal they are part of our society.

I take a range of prescription drugs and am a smoker. What about all of you?

Scoreline 501 to Nil

Pegasus, how can a scoreline 501 Guilty to Nil not guilty be said to be fair even in Indonesia. Are the people Idiots. Don't answer that because it can only we answered one way. The judge said that he had heard it all before that where drugs are found in a bag they say "Someone else must have put them in there".

They believe that to be impossible. For anyone to believe that to be impossible means it is not fair. Anything in this world is possible and judges must have an open mind to believe those things are possible.
Maybe we should sent Tony Abbott to Bali with his supposedly long lost son inside the bag and see how the Indonesian judge judges that that ABC camaraman is or is not Tony Abbott's son.

not precious

I was not precious about drugs. I was pointing out the same fact. Drugs are used in many if not all societies. What I was alluding to was why does humanity (including myself) need the stuff? I
I know the answer by the way; I was just pushing the barrow.


Hey Len,

Sounds like you might be a dart player (501 is a popular darts game if not the darts game).

I haven't said it was fair Len.

I second your suggestion of Tony taking a trio. Preferably one way.



Hey Gus, I wasn't sure if it was meant to be hypotehical but it obviously was.


Re: Dart

Pegasus, If I didn't write about darts it means I didn't write about darts. If I wrote what I wrote it means I wrote what I wrote. This is the second time you think I write about something that I am not writing about. Why that comes about I don't know. Will there be a third or fourth time?

Maybe you should read what is written instead of reading what is not there and that you think is there and then you read what you think is there that no one else thinks is there.

I write objectively and write clearly and what I mean I mean to write and not something about darts that is not there. Now go and read what John Howard thinks.

Good on you Len

Hey Len,

Forgive an attempt at humour. Perhaps you might try it yourself.


What I say is humour. I have been laughing all morning at myself in what I am writing.

innocent until proven guilty

The Judges found Shapelle to be guilty; pretty much everybody was expecting that. I think that because the Judges in the Shapelle Corby case had doubts, as the drugs were in her bag and nobody can prove that she didnt' put it there, they had no choice by to pass the guilty verdict. It's her word against the evidence and any CSI will tell you that the evidence is hardly ever wrong. Unlike humans to have a tendency to cover up and lie.

The Judges had to give a guilty verdict. If they didn't, what's to stop anybody who wants to take drugs over to Bali from putting them in their bag and then saying it wasn't theirs if they were stopped. It would set a dangerous precedent and it would undermine the Law and crime would run rampant and corruption would flourish.

I believe Australia is running on a dangerous precedent in realtion to the way they deal with accusations of crime, corruption and misconduct! I think Inonesia is smarter than us in that department, if only the actual court case wasn't such a circus and the jails were clean and well kept then I think that it would be the right way to deal with accusations of crime.

catch a plane

Jolanda needs to catch a plane to the Gold Coast. There are 500,000 people here and nearly everyone believes that Schapelle Corby is innocent. For the last five days Schapelle has been the front page of the Gold Coast Bulletin. They have been publishing the letters from the community and there have been three or four exrta pages every day from that flood of community response. There are hundreds and hundreds if not thousands of messages and the Gold Coast Bulletin has enough copy to print the newspaper for the next 20 years. There are signs on posts on roads, there are ribbons on the highway. There are cars with "Free Schapelle" on them. The community everywhere has Schapelle on their lips.

What do we do Jolanda? Annex the Gold Coast from Australia and pretend 500,000 Gold Coasters don't exist in their grieving; that Schapelle does not matter and therefore half a million people and their opinions don't matter? I could send you copies of the Gold Coast Bulletin and the weight of arguement and sentiment would drown you out half a million to one. The people of the Gold Caost want war. Here is one just letter picked at random and the letters are all in the same swearing and in anger virile"

John Howard is a gutless puppet, Indonesia can got to Hell. Rod.

The GCB is publishing all of them. Don't anyone bring any guns to the Gold Coast. The Gold Coast wants to make war on Indonesia.

Re: Innocent until proven guilty

Jolanda, I think what has upset many Australians is what appears to have been a reversal of the old adage "innocent until proven guilty".

The system under which Corby was tried seems to be the exact opposite, "guilty until proven innocent".

I hope you are not advocating that we change to the second system?

Re: catch a plane

Len, I dont need to catch a plane, I will take your word for it. Problem is that what you are saying is irrelevant as these people only "think" Schapelle is innocent. If they could prove it she wouldn't be there. People are entitled to their opinion and grief in this matter but it doesn't justify violence.

I truly dont know if Shapelle did it or not but the goods were in her bag and it was down to just her word against them. The Indonesian justice system had no choice but to find her guilty or undermine their Law

Do you know how many people in this world are suffering and grieving over the injustices of terrorism and war and what do you say, you say that Queensland wants guns so that there can be WAR?!.

If we don't change our attitudes and direction we will self destruct. Why does it appear that a victim of an accusation gets more protection, sympathy and compassion than a victim of a crime? So many people have been dealt injustices and the law has failed to provide them with Justice and the public has turned their back on them. What is different about this maybe victim of injustice or situation that has everybody so upset?

Thank god John Howard is our Prime Minister. He may not be right on many things and this shouldn't have happened as our airports should have been better run, but in this regard he is, in my opinion, right in the manner that he has dealt with the verdict.

standing accused.

The Indonesian Government didn't wake up one morning and say, 'I am going to get Schapelle Corby'. Shcapelle came before their Courts because drugs were found in her bag at Bali airport - so in their eyes, she is guilty of having drugs in her bag and that's drug trafficking and that is a serious offence in Indonesia punishable by death.

Unfortunately for Schapelle it became a case of her word that the drugs were not hers against the evidence in her bag and the evidence of the airport staff in Bali. She couldn't prove the drugs were not hers and, given the balance of the evidence, the result was expected.

In my opinion, when there is evidence to implicate, the accused should not be deemed innocent until proven guilty. This type of law undermines the victim and the Law.

The human word cannot be trusted in a situation like this. It's unfortunate but that's life. Innocence or guilt should not be determined until such time as the judge hears all the evidence and makes his decision. As a Judge that is their right and job.

Those that are accused of a crime should just "stand acused" with decision of whether guilty or otherwise pending, they should not be seen as innocent as that isn't fair on the victims.

Its just my humble opinion.


Hey all, I think John is spot on. Our system operates the opposite to theirs so Australians do get upset about what seems unfair under our system. It has been awfully hijacked and used by media but I think that was initiated by so called supporters and they are feeding a dangerous hunger.

Why is there not similar public reaction to the others in the same position? Why isn't Howard offering David Hicks two QCs? We know why. George told him.

I could never agree that Indonesia is smarter than Australia in relation to corruption etc. Maybe they just accept it as part of their way of life whereas here we have an expectation that it doesn't exist despite knowing that it does. Here it's not accepted fact whilst there it is blase, it's normal.

I must also take exception to Jolanda's statement about JH. Jolanda, it is Howard that is obsessed with soldiers, the forces and war. He has his job only because of that, and his use of the racist card. It is Howard that is pushing this country to divisions over every issue and Howard that uses our forces as his main promotional tool.

As I wrote above though I do agree there could not have been any other verdict under Indonesian law. The one fact that I consider most relevant as I have no other facts to consider is that no one from Australia would smuggle marijuana into Bali. Why? Because it is 10 times more expensive here and it is also freely available in Bali at 1/10th of Australian prices. $4000 worth as opposed to $40000 here. If I had to make a choice about guilt or not I would have to say not just based on that data. But I really have no idea and it doesn't really matter what I think.

The issue now is that there are many angry and upset people and Howard has to deal with that as it is he who promotes war as a solution and is only too ready to throw away our independence by commiting our forces outside our region for nothing.

Absolutely correct

You are absolutely correct. At the very moment they found the drugs in her bag she was guilty. The police wagon should have taken her then and put her in jail for 20 years. The court and trial was just a sham.
Indonesia is a dictatorship and she was guilty at the precise point of opening her bag.

We should thank the Indonesians by giving them another million dollars for not shooting her.

How dare Schapelle have drugs in her bag that she knows nothing about. I agee with you, kill her! She got off too lightly.

I too dont agree with everything

I too dont agree with everything our Prime Minister John Howard does but I dont actually think Kim Beazley or Mark Latham would have handled things better in relation to the war or terrorism or this issue for that matter - just different with the same bad or similar results and I truly believe that the Labor party in its present state could be detrimental to Australia if they were in power. Sure to some extent so is the Liberal party - but there is the issue about degrees and which one you think is worse - not better! We didn't have much choice.

At the end of the day I think all Politicians are the same and there was no way that the Labor party with what they have to offer as Prime Minister and their reputation of corruption could beat the Liberal party. I dont trust the Labor party more than I dont trust the Liberal and I have my reasons. The day that the Labor party fixes itself up and cleans itself up and presents a Prime Minster with integrity and vision and that we can feel confident and good about, I will go back to voting for them - but not before. Unfortunately in life there are always sacrifices as we all have different opinions and limited choices.

Australia has a tendency to cover up and deny, I prefer things to be completely open and transparent otherwise nothing gets identified or acknowledged and nothing gets fixed.

Presumption of Innocence

You might all like to consider the following:

The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - Article 14(2):

Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall have the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law.

The Statute of the International Criminal Court - Article 66(1):

Everyone shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty before the court in accordance with the applicable law.

The right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty conditions both the stage of criminal investigations and the trial proceedings; it is for the prosecuting authorities to prove beyond reasonable doubt that an accused person is guilty of the offence. Adverse public statements by officials may compromise the presumption of innocence.

Re: I too don't agree with everything

Then you may sleep well tonight Jolanda.  Your "preferred Prime Minister" shall watch over you as you sleep.

No matter that he is the most dishonest Prime Minister since federation.

No matter that he has taken the usual penchant of politicians to lie too and mislead the public and turned it into an art form.

Forget Tampa.

Forget the Baxter Concentration Camp.

Forget Iraq.

Forget that he is about to introduce IR laws which will impact disastrously on the more vulnerable in our society.

Forget his arrogance.

Sleep tight. 

All politicians Lie

John, I dont sleep well at night. I have insomnia as a result of my family being victims of systemic and continous bullying, corruption, victimisation, vilification, misconduct and as a result of a conspiracy to cover up my formal allegations in the public service and state Labor Government.

I dont understand why you would think that our Prime Minister is more dishonest than any other that was available to take his place.

The Labor Government is just as dishonest as the Liberal Government. My preferred prime Minister would have been someone who had our children's best interest at heart. Our role as adults should be to nuture and protect the children and if we do that, things will always flow smoothly and there will be no war, poverty or crime. Problem is we didn't get one of those Prime Ministers to choose from.

Hopefully one day we will get a Prime Minister who's main concern is best interest of the child and then I know I will sleep soundly as children will be protected.

Old saying

This is a saying I heard many a time from my Mum, she is now 85 and still stands by it.

'Tis far far better that 10 guilty go free rather than 1 innocent be hung

I have to agree.

You are so right!!

I don't think I have to make any other comment! You are just sooooo right!!

Re: Old saying

Hi Heather.  I think your Mum is very wise.

Give her a hug from me.

Mum is right

Maybe your Mum is the right person to explain this to Linton Sirait!

email address is :

Old Sayings

Heather, I think whether it is better that 10 guilty people go free rather than 1 innocent be hung would depend on how many people those 10 guilty people were said to have killed or injured and how many more might they kill if they are let out and how many innocent victims would be generated in each scenario.

I dont agree with that saying. That is why Schapelle is not getting the death penalty. I agree that if there is any doubt a person should not be executed, they should be given a jail term and the right to appeal if they feel that they can prove their innocence.

I still think that those accused of a crime should only be deemed innocent until proven guilty when they front before the court, before that they, "stand accused".

curiosity only

Wolf, your comment, "You are so right!!", is the 1000th comment on this site.

Sorry there's no prize, but congratulations anyway.

Smart Mexicans

From the NYT

Mexico Passes Law Making Possession of Some Drugs Legal

Published: April 29, 2006
MEXICO CITY, April 28 — Mexican lawmakers passed a sweeping new drug law early Friday that would crack down on small-time dealers, legalize the possession of small quantities of drugs and mandate treatment for addicts.

Under the bill, it would be legal to have 25 milligrams of heroin, a fifth of an ounce of marijuana or half a gram of cocaine. The bill also makes it legal to possess small amounts of LSD, hallucinogenic mushrooms, amphetamines and peyote.

President Vicente Fox had proposed the law in January 2004 in the hopes of slowing down the rapid growth in drug addiction and the ranks of small-time dealers that has hit Mexican cities and towns in recent years, just as it has long plagued American cities

read More at the NYT