Indonesian prosecutors seek death for 8 Taiwanese drug suspects

Jakarta-Indonesian prosecutors have requested that eight Taiwanese nationals allegedly involved in a drug smuggling operation last year be sentenced to death.

Tipped off by Taiwanese police, Indonesian police intercepted a record one metric ton haul of crystal methamphetamine imported from China during a raid in Anyer Beach, west of Jakarta on July 13, 2017.

During the operation, Indonesian police killed a Taiwanese man identified as the kingpin of the drug ring after he refused to surrender, and arrested three others, identified as Chen Wei-cyuan (???), Liao Guan-yu (???) and Hsu Yung-li (???), respectively.

Five other Taiwanese were later arrested on July 15 in Indonesia in connection with the case.

While Chen, Liao and Hsu were responsible for taking delivery of the drugs in Indonesia, the other five were responsible for shipping the drugs to Indonesia via a Taiwanese cruise ship, according to Indonesian prosecutor Abun Hasbullah.

Hsu was hired to pick up the drugs in Indonesia in exchange for 120 million rupiah (US$8,939), while Liao and Chen each got 80 million rupiah for unloading and packaging the drugs, Abun said during a court hearing on the case on Wednesday, in which he requested that the eight be sentenced to death.

According to similar cases handled in the past, people convicted of trafficking over 1 kilogram of methamphetamine are usually given death sentences.

As part of the country's war on drugs, the Indonesian government is intensifying the severity of punishments, especially for foreigners.

According to information provided by the Indonesian government, a total of 11 Taiwanese suspects in drug trafficking cases have been sentenced to death in recent years, with another five killed during police operations.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel