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Death row Briton loses funding bid

British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford, 56, has lost her appeal over a UK Government refusal to fund her legal challenge against a death sentence imposed by an Indonesian court for drug smuggling.

Her lawyers attempted to challenge a High Court ruling that the Government was not legally obliged to pay for "an adequate lawyer" to represent her.

But three senior judges headed by Lord Dyson, Master of the Rolls, have dismissed her challenge in the Court of Appeal.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office refused to fund her case as a matter of Government policy.

She was sentenced to death by firing squad by a court in Bali for taking £1.6 million of cocaine on to the island.

In January, the UK High Court upheld the Government's stance of not providing legal funding for British nationals arrested abroad, even in exceptional circumstances.

After the High Court gave its decision, Sandiford received a private donation of over £2,500 that enabled her to be represented by an Indonesian lawyer at the subsequent Bali appeal.

Having lost that first appeal, she is now in a race against time to raise money to take her case to Indonesia's Supreme Court in Jakarta. The appeal court heard Sandiford needs about £8,000 to fight on.

The sum of £2,000 has already been found, but around £6,000 is still needed from the Government as money from private sources following publicity was "fully exhausted", said lawyers for Sandiford, who is not entitled to legal aid in Indonesia.

Lord Dyson, sitting with two other judges, said the court had given "very careful consideration" to the issues raised in what he described as a "troubling" case. He added the reasons for the judgment would be given "as soon as possible". Office)


From Belfast Telegraph