Pubdate: Fri, 22 Apr 2005
Source: New Zealand Herald ( New Zealand )
Copyright: 2005 New Zealand Herald
Author: AAP


Hollywood superstar Russell Crowe has appealed to the Australian government 
to act to save Schapelle Corby from life in jail over what he says is a 
questionable charge.

Crowe, who owns a property at Nana Glen on the mid-north NSW coast not far 
from the hippie capital Nimbin, also said it was time to decriminalise 
marijuana, as the current system was jeopardising too many lives.

The 41-year-old Oscar award winning actor jumped to the defence of of the 
Gold Coast woman, who faces life imprisonment if convicted of smuggling 
more than 4kg of cannabis into Bali's Denpasar airport in her bodyboard bag 
last October.

Photographs of the distraught 27-year-old were all over the front pages of 
newspapers today after Indonesian prosecutors yesterday announced they 
would seek life imprisonment rather than the death penalty.

Crowe called on Prime Minister John Howard to act, saying it was ridiculous 
that Corby could rot away in prison for the rest of her life.  "When there 
is such doubt, how can we, as a country, stand by and let a young lady, as 
an Australian, rot away in a foreign prison?" he told the John Laws Radio 

"That is ridiculous.

"We just gave Indonesia how many hundreds of millions of dollars in tsunami 
relief? We're not disrespecting your ( Indonesia's ) laws or anything but 
in our minds we think there is a massive doubt here."

Crowe said the government should request Corby be brought back to Australia 
to face trial under our judicial system.

"The photographs of Schapelle Corby broke my heart," he said.

"The first thing I thought this morning was, like, how can I get Johnny 
Howard on the phone and say 'look, what are you gonna do, mate, what are 
you gonna do?' - that's ridiculous, what if it was your daughter?

"You know it as well as I do - all of these things, international 
diplomacy, can be moved to meet the needs of the individual country in that 

"The due process of Indonesian law we have to respect from an international 
relations point of view but from my individual point of view, looking at 
it, it's like it's bullshit, let's deal with it."

But his sympathies appeared to run dry when it came to the nine Australians 
caught in Bali this week over an 8.65kg heroin seizure.

Four of the group allegedly had heroin strapped to their bodies and police 
have said they could face death by firing squad if found guilty of 

"Now the other guys - the other recent thing with your heroin taped to your 
body and you're there to make some money - that's a completely different 
thing," Crowe said.  
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