Bali court jails New Zealand woman over joint

2014-07-02 13:36
Leeza Tracey Ormsby (L) of New Zealand speaks with her lawyer from holding cell at a court in Denpasar on Bali island. (Sonny Tumbelaka, AFP)

Leeza Tracey Ormsby (L) of New Zealand speaks with her lawyer from holding cell at a court in Denpasar on Bali island. (Sonny Tumbelaka, AFP)

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Denpasar – A New Zealand woman was jailed for 10 months on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on Wednesday after she was caught with a half-smoked hash joint.

Leeza Ormsby was arrested in February after police raided a villa in the tourist area of Kuta, and found the joint in her bag as well as a large stash of hash and ecstasy in a cupboard.

The 37-year-old, who was based in Sydney before her arrest, admitted to smoking the joint but insisted the other drugs were not hers.

After investigating, police sought charges against her only over the joint, which contained 0.3 grams of hash, and said that the hash and ecstasy in the cupboard would form part of a separate probe.

Presiding judge Parulian Saragih told a court in the Balinese capital Denpasar on Wednesday that Ormsby had been found guilty of illegal drug use, and handed her a 10-month sentence.

It was less than the 15 months sought by prosecutors, but the judge said she had "confessed to the crime and will not repeat it".

After the sentencing, Ormsby thanked the panel of judges.

Indonesia has some of the world's toughest anti-narcotics laws, including the death sentence for drug-smuggling.

Bali attracts millions of tourists every year with its pristine, palm-fringed beaches but foreigners are regularly caught with drugs on the hard-partying island.

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