Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Caught this on the Field Negro, and chased it down via Google. It's a frightening story about a young woman caught in a country that doesn't afford people the same rights as we are used to in the United States, such as right to counsel.
She's been in a Laos jail accused of smuggling heroin and apparently Laos law dictates death for anyone caught carrying over 500 grams; she allegedly had 680. That's a little over a pound. The Laotian government has not allowed attorney contact with Miss Orobator.

From the Field:
According to the telegraph.co.uk, Miss Orobator, 20, from London was arrested last August at Wattay airport in the south east Asian country.

Prosecutors claim she had 680 grams (1.3lb or 21 oz) of heroin in her luggage.According to the legal campaign group Reprieve she has not met a lawyer since she was arrested 9 months ago but it is believed that she denies the drugs were hers.

Under Lao law the death penalty is mandatory for possession of over 500 grams of heroin. At least 39 people have been sentenced to death for a variety of offences since 2003.On Thursday, without warning or explanation, the government of Laos rescheduled Miss Orobator's trial for next week, but they have still not announced which day the case will begin. "

More here.

So the young lady has been in jail since last August, and she's five months pregnant.
Clearly she got pregnant while locked up, which again begs the question posed elsewhere: was she raped? This is an absolute nightmare for her mother: from New York Daily news:
From her home in Dublin, Orobator's mother Jane Orobator told The Associated Press that she just wanted her daughter home."I'm terrified. I'm scared," she said in a telephone interview. "I'm just begging they should not do anything to her. They should just send her back to me."
Read the story at the link above or here.
As much as I bitch about our system in the U.S., we do have considerable more accountability from our police and judicial system, (and our system puts the burden on the government, not the citizen) than others do around the world. It makes me glad I live in the U.S., at the same time it makes me want to demand more accountability from our police forces, judges, and politicians.
Hold this young lady in your thoughts and prayers and follow this story, help get it out.
thanks to nydailynews.com

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