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cyanide coffee death: jessica wongso may not yet have had a fair trial, indonesian law expert says
Controversial criminal cases in Indonesian legal history.
The case highlights the problems with Indonesia\'s highly criticized judicial system. After a four-
Two state television stations broadcast a month\'s trial live and Australian permanent resident Jessica Kumara wandaw was convicted of premeditated murder.
The judge sentenced her to 20 years in prison for poisoning her friend, Mirna Salihin, in a high-end cafe in Jakarta on January.
They accepted the prosecution\'s claim that Weng Gu arrived early after arranging a meeting with Sally shin and a common friend, Hani, at the cafe.
She ordered a drink and before her friend arrived, she added a dose of cyanide to her Vietnamese iced coffee in sarichin.
Prosecutors said she put three paper shopping bags on her desk to hide what she was doing from CCTV cameras.
Sally Hin drank coffee and then fainted and died before she arrived at the hospital.
For the judges, onso was motivated by jealousy and revenge.
Wongso is jealous of sarichin\'s happy marriage and hopes to retaliate after sarichin tells her to break up with her Australian boyfriend and because she has not been invited to sarichin\'s wedding.
From the beginning, the Wongso case was controversial.
Indonesia has asked Australian Federal Police to help them investigate Wongso\'s alleged premeditated murder, although the Indonesian criminal code allows judges to impose the death penalty on the crime.
Indonesian Minister of Law and Human Rights Yasonna Laoly reportedly assured that she would not face the death penalty.
However, the minister cannot give such a guarantee because the prosecutor decides what punishment to pursue and the court can impose a penalty on any punishment they like.
It is disputed that there are allegations that senior Indonesian police have refused to have her lawyer accompany her for questioning, thus violating police procedures and even the criminal procedure law.
The police denied that they forced her lawyer to leave the room, but admitted that they \"asked\" the lawyer to leave the room to prevent him from affecting her statement.
In court and in the media, Wongso is portrayed as someone who is crazy, malicious and capable of murder.
However, the evidence against Wongso has always been indirect and dated.
Even the prosecutor appeared reluctant to try her case and asked the police four times for more evidence.
Because there is no direct evidence of her guilt, the trial consists mainly of expert witnesses for prosecution and defense, their mental state and post-
An autopsy on the body of sarichin
CCTV has limited footage.
Almost no prosecution.
At least the dominant evidence is convincing compared to the defense evidence.
The prosecution summoned several psychologists as expert witnesses to testify about the mental state of ongso and the mental state after the collapse of Salihin.
However, none of them personally checked Wongso, and their testimony seemed rough and not like an expert.
For example, someone described Wongso\'s reaction to sarichin\'s crash as \"weird\" because the CCTV footage did not show Wongso trying to help sarichin.
Another testified that when the seat next to it was empty, it was unusual for someone to put their luggage on the table.
However, according to a police statement issued by her former boss in Australia, another person raised questions about the mental state of Wongso, saying she heard Wongso say: the former boss of wongso did not appear in court to confirm this statement.
Prosecutors said onso knew that the cafes had CCTV cameras and that they were in place, so, as mentioned, she blocked her view of putting cyanide in her sarichin coffee with shopping bags.
An expert testified that CCTV footage showed Jessica doing \"suspicious moves\" when she opened her handbag, and maybe she put something on the table.
However, none of the videos that were played during the trial showed that she took anything from her handbag, not to mention that she took out the cyanide and then stirred it into the drink of sarichin.
In fact, Wongso\'s lawyer proved that she had sent a text message on her phone when her hand was covered by a bag.
This may be called.
Known as the \"suspicious\" movement.
To make matters worse, the prosecution did not convincingly prove that sarichin died of the poison ingested, let alone cyanide.
The coffee that Salihin drank was neither tested nor produced by trial.
Soon after the fall of sarichin, it may have been discarded in the cafe.
An expert at the National Police Hospital testified that the intestines of sarichin were corroded and the mouth was black, which is consistent with cyanide poisoning.
The court appears to have accepted this testimony from the expert testimony Hill requested by the defense, expressing serious doubt as to whether the cause of sarichin\'s death was cyanide.
Seriously, no autopsy was performed and a toxicology test conducted 70 minutes after her death showed no cyanide in her gastric juice, bile, liver and urine.
In the days after her death, only a small amount of cyanide was found in her gastric juice, but, as Jaya Surya Atmaja, a forensic pathologist at the University of Indonesia, testified, this is possible
As a result, the possibility of sarricin dying from natural causes such as heart disease remains.
An Australian pathologist supports these conclusions, proving that he expects a higher level of cyanide to be present in the stomach of a person with fatal poisoning;
Cyanide is also present in the intestines and liver.
He explained that poisoning usually begins within 30 minutes of intake, rather than the two minutes claimed by the prosecution.
Other typical signs of cyanide mentioned by defense experts, including the red skin, the smell of cyanide and the poison in the stomach, did not appear.
The judges ignored other important issues.
After Sakhalin apparently complained about the taste of the coffee, both Hani and the cafe owner tasted it, but it was not adversely affected.
Does this increase support for the defense argument that sarichin may not end up with poisoning?
Claiming that Wongso \"arrived early\" in the cafe as part of a plan to put cyanide into the coffee, could not afford to review: a text message from the defense showed that, with the consent of three women, ongo has arrived, but Sally Shin and Hani are late.
If they arrive on time as planned, Jessica will not have a chance to tie the drinks.
As there was not much evidence, the prosecution and even the judge raised many seemingly random questions to witnesses and defendants during the trial, which did not have clear progress or direction and were clearly intended to \"stumble\" the accused.
In the judgment, the judges wrote that in the course of the trial, onso\'s cry was a \"stage performance\" because it was not \"from the heart \";
She cried, they observed, but there was no tears, and there was no need to wipe the tears on her face with a paper towel.
After the judges looked at their decision, Otto Hasibuan, counsel for Wongso, immediately announced that she would appeal, calling the decision a \"funeral bell\" for justice \".
In his view, the judges, once again united, appeared to be suing, ignoring the evidence of the defense.
Regardless of whether she poisoned her friend or not, Jessica wangso is entitled to a fair trial under Indonesian law.
She doesn\'t seem to have one yet.
Simon Bart is an Indonesian law professor at the University of Sydney.
It was originally published in the dialogue. Topics:courts-and-trials,law-crime-and-justice,murder-and-