22 June 2008

Schapelle Corby -- Suicide Watch

The ongoing Schapelle Corby saga has taken a much more serious and sad turn with Corby being hospitalized for depression and rapid weight loss. Prison is a stressful place I am sure but it would seem that Corby has lost the will to fight after the rejection of her latest appeal. It is easy to say, "if you do the crime, you have to do the time", but if you genuinely believe in your innocence then doing the time must seem very unfair.

The weight loss in itself does not seem to be overly serious provided it does not continue. Having lost 12 kilos in the space of a month when not dieting is a concern but aside from being a little skinny at 5'2" and 45 kilos the weight would not seem to be a physical problem yet.

However, what is probably more of a concern to her family and medical staff are reports of hallucinations and paranoia. Doctors are reporting she is not taking any drugs and the hallucinations and paranoia are the result of emotional responses and not physical ones. What is interesting to me is that Corby was prescribed anti-depressants two weeks ago but by all accounts the hallucinations and paranoia are worsening. Not only worsening but worsening to a point where she is considered a danger to herself and others. She is now on a purportedly 24-hour a day suicide watch.

A psychiatrist, Lely Setyawati, has been brought in to assist with Corby's treatment and has since recommended that Corby be hospitalized indefinitely. Indefinite hospitalization indicates that the problems that Corby has are a little more serious than just having a bad day.

All of these developments are occurring simultaneously with the airing on Channel 9 tonight of a documentary on the Corby case, Schapelle Corby: The Hidden Truth, which is supposedly going to explode the myths surrounding the case. Considering all the exposure that the case has had in the past it seems a bit of a reach to suggest that there are still lingering issues that have not been examined at some point previously.

With a bit of luck the documentary might get a screening here in Jakarta so that Channel 9 can challenge me and explode the myths surrounding the case (photo by Jason Childs / SMH).


tere616 said...

Have you watched that channel 9 ? I've followed her case before, just wondering what was the truth ?

Can imagine if she's in depression stage, be in prison is hard to bear especially when your family is far away.

Hm ... can I watch that channel 9 through you tube ?

Polar Bear said...

Well Rob, I have a good friend doing 25 years here, and she gets far less media coverage and sympathy than this stupid bitch.

Latest reports are her Solicitor now admits that the Baggage Handler story was bullshit. Now the Corby machine claims it was her brothers stash.

Rob Baiton said...


You Tube, maybe!


I took considerable flak from Hotman Paris a couple of years ago when I picked him on his knowledge of Australian criminal law.

I was unequivocally told that Corby's guilt or innocence was directly related to my Australian-ness and patriotism -- simply if I thought she was guilty then I was un-Australian and unpatriotic...if you know me well enough through my writings you can guess where that went :D

Yep, on the baggage handlers! I always thought that it was a diversionary tactic and that in the end her lawyers would never be able to come up with the goods in terms of proving the possibility.

I always thought that it was her half brother. Yet, I was never convinced that she was not involved.

It certainly has become a bit of an industry. I think that over time the issue will fade.

When it is all said and done she is a convicted drug trafficker and no one has made a case that there were fatal flaws in the legal process at the Indonesian end.

It might not have been perfect but there was so much coverage that the reality is that the Indonesians themselves wanted to make sure that it was all above board. The issues, if any, are not with the trial but with the arrest and then investigation.

Polar Bear said...

Rob, I watched the show tonight. I was torn between two viewpoints, both of which I hold (maybe Jakass is right and I am bipolar……).

She comes from an awful family, who all appear to be involved in drugs. They are the worst kind of Australians, you need to see the show to understand what I mean. Arrogant trailer trash.

But that doesn’t make her guilty.

And she is not overly bright. That doesn’t make her guilty either.

She looks like she SHOULD be guilty, and SOMEONE must be guilty, and SHE said it was her bag.

I just called a friend, and he said the only one who came over as trustworthy was the Bali customs officer.

But should she be in jail? I really don’t know.

Should she and her family have been allowed a passport? NO WAY. They are a walking disaster.

Rob Baiton said...


I do not know that my assessment would have been quite as harsh as yours. The family in my view is one that most would consider to be dysfunctional.

Yep, the family has a lengthy drug history. Although, Mercedes recently won her defamation suit against Channel 7 with regard to her alleged drug use and trade.

Coming from a family of drug users does not make you guilty and neither does being of an average intellect.

My point is that it is like reading the sports pages the day after the game; the result does not change. So, in that sense, and it is the point that I made, she is a convicted drug smuggler and trafficker.

The appeals process is done and her only hope is a clemency plea to the President. This process would require her to admit guilt and there is no guarantee that the President would be of the mind to grant a pardon or clemency anyway. So, she could find herself admitting guilt and staying in jail.

On the passport angle, even if I was to agree with you that convicted criminals should have much stricter vetting processes applied with respect to the issue of passports (I am not sure that any criminal conviction should mean a blanket ban on travel privileges), then the question still remains that there are some people without criminal convictions that would still consider smuggling drugs.

No system is fool proof, in that some fools will always find a way.

Should she be in jail? Unless someone an come up with some concrete proof that the system was wrong or that there were significant legal errors that render the verdict unsustainable then the answer to the question is, yes!

Her claims have been tested legally and she has faltered at each hurdle. I am not going to suggest for one minute that there are not problems in the Indonesian legal system. I am not going to suggest that corruption is not prevalent in the legal system, it is.

What I have said is that under the glare of a very public spotlight the legal system went out of its way to make sure that this particular trial was kosher.

The prosecution went to work and the legal arguments were solid. It was not here you go judge our arguments are a bit weak but the brown envelope should make up for that.

The saga continues.

Polar Bear said...

Rob, I hear various rumours, which may or may not be true, about this case. One is that the AFP were sick of this family and deliberately allowed the passage of the drugs to go ahead, knowing that Corby would get a substantial jail term for a crime that, had she been arrested in Australia, would have warranted a suspected sentence.

I also hear that Mercedes had better not put a foot wrong, as Channel 7 isn’t too happy about losing. If they ever get a chance to prove she committed perjury they wont hesitate to go for the jugular.

Rob Baiton said...


On the Mercedes defamation verdict there are things I have heard in the past about the conduct of Mercedes and her Balinese husband that I thought might have come up in the hearings.

It is all hearsay and alleged behaviour but I would have thought were there is smoke there is fire and maybe Channel 7 could have smoked someone out (pun intended)...

On the AFP angle. This picked up after the much more explicit involvement of the AFP in the Bali Nine trafficking case. It was then suggested that maybe the AFP have been doing this for a while and maybe the AFP were somehow involved in Corby's case.

If it were true, it would be an interesting development. Not in terms of Corby's guilt but rather the MO of the AFP in allowing Australians (and perhaps facilitating) to do serious time in foreign jails and also in some cases be sentenced to death.

This is particularly disheartening where these offences attract a much lesser sentence and in some cases nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

Disheartening not because the offenders should not be punished but rather that they are being exposed through their own stupidity and government complicity to the ultimate punishment.

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