‘Don’t bring drugs into Bali’ says sorry Australian

An Australian man facing the death penalty after being caught at Bali international airport with heroin has apologised for his actions, just hours before a court is due to hear his case.

Graham Welton Jeffrey Huynh has broken his silence to profess his sorrow for the first time since he was allegedly found with 8.09 grams of heroin secreted in his anus.

He had arrived in Bali in September from a flight from Vietnam and is a dual Australian-British passport holder.

The 52-year-old, flanked by his lawyers and speaking from the Anargya Sober House in capital Denpasar, with his hearing to be held via zoom, wanted to publicly express regret and say sorry.

“I just want to say that I am very sorry for breaking the law in Indonesia and I am very grateful for the current attention and opportunity to get (medical) attention, I feel much better now,” he told local media ahead of the formal hearing.

When asked if he had a message to other foreigners, he nodded and said “don’t bring drugs into Bali”.

The former Perth-based diving instructor and keen surfer was then escorted into another room where the hearing was held, in Indonesian with a lawyer translating as the proceedings began.

At an earlier hearing, his lawyer Edward Pangkahila confirmed his client was a long term drug user and had a severe addiction to heroin for 15 years.

“Yes, it’s true that the Australian has been arrested by the Narcotic Agency at the airport,” he said.

“As the lawyer, we are working on it and hopefully he can get rehabilitation. He is a drug user who has been severely addicted to heroin. He really needs rehabilitation. We have requested the narcotic agency to conduct an assessment for his drug addiction.”

Mercy was requested on the basis Huynh was not a dealer but a user, and therefore should be tried under lighter legislation. Carrying more than 5 grams of narcotics carries the maximum death penalty. He could also face life in jail.

The court heard the man, who normally goes by the name Jeff Welton, looked nervous when he moved through the arrivals lounge and lined up for the xrays. When he was searched, he became increasingly more nervous after persistent questioning, was taken to the toilet by airport officers and told to defecate. Inside him they found condoms with the 8.09 grams of heroin and a small pack of 0.34 grams of methamphetamine.

Prosector Dewa Ari said Welton bought the methamphetamine and heroin from someone in the roadside in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam for around $US50 per gram.

“The defendant bring the drugs to Bali for his personal use because the defendant need it to be used every day. The defendant said that he doesn’t know where to find drugs in Bali, so he brave himself to bring the drugs into Bali,” he said.

“At the beginning, the defendant bought 9 gram of heroin and 0.9 gram methamphetamine. The defendant had used 90 per cent of the heroin and 10 per cent of the methamphetamine in Vietnam.”

The court was told Welton used all forms of drugs including heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, MDMA, marijuana “and others”.

“The defendant used the drugs to relieve his pain because of the spine fractured and other injuries he got from several time accident,” Mr Dewa said.

“During his stay in Vietnam, the defendant use heroin everyday, and use meth twice a week. The effect of heroin he say it made him feel happy, not depressed and doesn’t feel trauma anymore, doesn’t feel hurt, and always positive thinking. Jeff claimed that the drugs could stabilise his mental health.”

The trial continues.

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