Key dates in the Bali Nine saga

Key dates in the Bali Nine saga:


April 8 to 12 – Australian Federal Police tip off Indonesian counterparts about the smuggling attempt and tell them to “take whatever action you deem necessary”.


April 17 – Andrew Chan and four others arrested at Denpasar Airport; Scott Rush, Michael Czugaj, Renae Lawrence and Martin Stephens have 8.3kg of heroin strapped to their bodies.

– Myuran Sukumaran, Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, Si Yi Chen and Matthew Norman are arrested soon after in Kuta, preparing a second shipment.

April 22 – Indonesian police say Andrew Chan was the “godfather” of the operation.

April 26 – Two mules say Chan threatened them with death if they refused to carry the drugs.

April 27 – Indonesian police say they have shot and killed the man they believe supplied the heroin, Nepalese citizen Mann Singh Gali.

Sept 27 – Prosecutors confirm all nine Australians will be charged with possession and trafficking of heroin, carrying the death penalty.

Sept 29 – Australian authorities say the AFP will stop co-operating with the Indonesian investigation given the possibility of firing squads.

Oct 7 – Lawyers for Lawrence and Rush allege the AFP may have acted illegally by handing information to Indonesian authorities.

Oct 11 – Trials of the Bali Nine begin.


Jan 24 – Prosecutors demand death sentence for enforcer Sukumaran.

Jan 26 – Prosecutors demand Chan be sent to the firing squad as well; they ask for life sentences for six others, while Lawrence faces 20 years.

Feb 13: Lawrence and Rush sentenced to life.

Feb 14: Chan and Sukumaran sentenced to death by firing squad; Stephens and Czugaj get life in prison.

Feb 15: Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, Si Yi Chen and Matthew Norman sentenced to life in prison.

Feb 17: All but Rush appeal against their sentences.

April 26: Chan and Sukumaran’s appeals are rejected.

April 27: Sentences for Lawrence, Czugaj, Nguyen, Chen and Norman reduced to 20 years; life sentences for Rush and Stephens upheld.

Sept 6: Prosecutors win appeal against sentence reduction for Rush, Nguyen, Chen and Norman – they are also sentenced to death. Stephens’ life sentence upheld; Czugaj’s term increased again to life.


Jan 30: Rush challenges his death sentence

April 23: Lawyers for Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, Si Yi Chen and Matthew Norman also file for a judicial review of their death sentences.


March 6: Nguyen, Chen and Norman death sentences reduced to life in prison.


April 13: Stephens requests judicial review; it is rejected 10 months later.

August 13: Chan and Sukumaran request judicial reviews.

August 26: Rush appears in court for his final appeal; AFP commissioner Mick Keelty testifies on his behalf.


May 11: Rush’s death sentence reduced to life imprisonment.

June 17: Chan’s request for judicial review rejected.

July 7: Sukumaran’s request for judicial review rejected.


May 13: Chan appeals for clemency from President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

July 9: Sukumaran also appeals for presidential clemency.


Dec 11: New president Joko Widodo makes it clear he will not grant clemency to drug traffickers.


Jan 7: Sukumaran’s bid for presidential clemency rejected.

Jan 18: Six drug smugglers executed.

Jan 22: Chan also loses bid for clemency.

Feb 2: It is announced both men will be among the next lot to be executed.

Feb 4: Request for second judicial review rejected.

Feb 7: Indonesian government confirms the men will face the firing squad before end of month.

Feb 8: The men’s lawyer at their first trial alleges judges requested a bribe to reduce their sentence.

Feb 12: 150,000 signatures on a Mercy petition asking for clemency handed to the men’s families; Foreign Minister Julie Bishop makes emotional plea in federal parliament for Indonesia to spare their lives.

Feb 24: Legal appeal fails when Jakarta court says it can’t examine the Indonesia president’s decision to deny clemency

March 2: Chan and Sukumaran’s lawyers work to file an appeal against the administrative court’s decision not to examine the men’s clemency rejection

March 3: Bali prosecutor Momock Bambang Samiarso says the pair will be transferred on March 4 to a penal island to await execution.

March 4: Chan and Sukumaran are moved under police from Kerobokan prison.

Immobile double puts Dortmund in Cup last eight

The Italian, criticised for a lack of Bundesliga goals this season, pounced on a cross-field pass from Dynamo’s Michael Hefele to snatch the lead five minutes after the break on a bumpy pitch that resembled a ploughed field in parts.


Dortmund, last season’s finalists, struggled to play the flowing game that has won their last four league matches and Mats Hummels almost gifted Dynamo an equaliser when his backpass bounced awkwardly and was intercepted before keeper Mitch Langerak cleared.

“You cannot expect to play good football on a pitch like that,” Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp told reporters. “This pitch is quite something and we had to play very simple football on it.”

Dortmund’s substitute striker Adrian Ramos almost got a second but his shot squeezed past a defender and hit the near post before rolling along the line and being cleared.

However, Immobile, who suffered a facial injury in the first half from Hefele’s elbow, scored again when he slotted in from a Jakub Blaszczykowski cutback in the box near the final whistle.

Dortmund winger Marco Reus, who missed much of 2014 with a string of ankle injuries, limped off midway through the first half, though his injury may not be too serious.

“I was told it may just be a knock on the leg. But I don’t know if he will be fit for the league at the weekend,” Klopp said.


Earlier, Bayer Leverkusen’s Hakan Calhanoglu rescued his side from embarrassment with a sensational free kick to steer them to a 2-0 extra-time win over second tier Kaiserslautern.

The Turkey international fired a shot around the wall from 25 metres past keeper Marius Mueller towards the end of the first half of extra-time to break the visitors’ resistance.

Stefan Kiessling added a second goal 10 minutes later after Leverkusen struggled for most of the game.

Fellow Bundesliga club Hoffenheim had a much easier task against second division Aalen with Eugen Polanski and Germany international Kevin Volland on the scoresheet.

In the all-Bundesliga clash, Freiburg got two goals in two minutes early in the first half to win 2-1 at home Cologne, who had opened the scoring when Anthony Ujah put through his own net before they netted a late consolation.

Holders Bayern Munich are in action on Wednesday against Eintracht Braunschweig.

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; editing by Ken Ferris)

How Indonesia carries out executions

How Indonesia carries out executions:

– The convicted must be notified 72 hours before execution

– While waiting, they must be held in a special prison

– If the convicted wants to say something, the statement or the message must be received by the prosecutor

– If the convicted is pregnant, the execution will take place 40 days after the child is born

– Their lawyer can attend the execution

– The execution is not performed in public and conducted in the most modest possible way unless determined otherwise by the president

– The head of local police forms the shooting team, consisting of one non-commissioned officer and 12 privates, under the command of an officer

– The convicted can be accompanied by a spiritual counsellor

– They must dress modestly and orderly

– The commander will blindfold them with a piece of fabric, unless asked not to

– They can stand, sit or kneel

– If necessary their hands or feet will be tied to a pole

– There will be between five and 10 metres between the convicted and the shooting team

– In previous executions, the shooting team has comprised 12 men with rifles – three of them with live rounds – who aim at targets over the convicted’s heart

– Using a sword for the signal, the commander will order “ready” by swinging his sword up, ordering the team to aim at the convict’s heart

– By swinging his sword down quickly, he orders “shoot”

– If the convicted isn’t yet dead, the non-commissioned officer is ordered to shoot his pistol in his/her head, above the ear

– A doctor will confirm the death and a report will be prepared on the execution

– The body is handed to family or friends for burial, or to the state, with attention paid to religious beliefs.


Day resumes golf No.1 assault

Jason Day believes a more cagey approach to the tough Blue Monster course can help him super-charge his drive for golf’s world No.


1 ranking.

The 27-year-old world No.4 aims to capitalise on strong early-season momentum in this week’s lucrative World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at the Trump Doral resort in Florida.

Having triumphed at Torrey Pines just under a month ago and also notched third and fourth placings in four starts this year, Day is trending heavily toward his goal of becoming world No.1.

Just 74 players make up the field in this week’s no-cut elite event, including every one of the world’s top 50 – the first time since the 2012 US PGA Championship an event has been so stacked.

For Day it represents a chance to jump to world No.2 should he triumph, bringing him closer to Rory McIlroy – as well as claiming a winner’s cheque of over $A2 million.

But he is mindful that the famed Blue Monster course has not been kind to him in the past, with a best finish of tied 20th in 2012.

Last year he was fresh off his drought-breaking win in the World Golf Championships Match Play Championship but was forced to withdraw from Doral with the thumb injury that would plague his entire season.

Day said he would have to play smart on the revamped course.

“It is going to be a grinding week. It is a very tough course and, with the wind up, it will be really difficult,” Day said.

“I am hopeful the recent changes to the course will help the way I look at this place but I have also realised attitude is a big issue for me here.

“I need to make sure I stay in the grind and know that anything under par here you are beating the course.

“I have to be cautious and pick the right risks.”

He sees the week as a big opportunity, with the world’s best players present and big ranking points on offer.

“Winning Torrey was great and an awesome way to get the year started but winning a tournament like this, with the calibre of player, could really propel me into the majors,” Day told AAP.

“I want to keep it going, I want to win more tournaments. When you want to be number one you have to win.

“I want to be a guy who wins consistently and wins on the biggest stages and as such I am focused on right now and this week.”

World No.5 Adam Scott will make his debut for 2015 after the recent birth of his first daughter, paired with countryman Day and world No.6 Jim Furyk in the opening two rounds.

Fellow Australians John Senden and Geoff Ogilvy join the field courtesy of making last season’s Tour Championship while Greg Chalmers and Steven Jeffress will also tee up after finishing at the top of the 2014 Australasian Tour Order of Merit.

Two Sydney boys’ path to the Indonesian firing squad

One was dubbed “The Godfather”.


The other, “The Enforcer”. Whether those tags ever fit Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran is debatable. When they were arrested for their parts in the Bali Nine heroin smuggling effort in 2005, they at least looked the part. 

Chan, then 21, had a shaved head, gold earrings, tattoos and a smug veneer. Sukumaran, 24, loomed a head above him – silent and defiant. Surveillance police initially thought he was Chan’s bodyguard. 

Somewhere in the years after leaving Homebush Boys High School, they drifted away from their supportive working class inner-west families and into Sydney’s underbelly. Chan was the self-confessed black sheep of his Cantonese-speaking family. But he was known as a hard worker at Eurest, the catering company for the Sydney Cricket Ground.

Sukumaran was a university drop-out, the eldest of three children. He wanted to be the guy at the nightclubs who bought the drinks, and had fast cars and hot women, but it seemed impossible in his job in a mailroom.

To their church-going families it was a total shock when they learned their sons were arrested in Bali over an attempt to smuggle 8.3kg of heroin, worth around $4 million. Following an Australian Federal Police tip, Chan was pulled off a Sydney-bound plane around the same time as four others were caught in Denpasar’s departure hall with heroin strapped to their bodies. 

The mules – Renae Lawrence, Martin Stephens, Scott Rush and Michael Czugaj – claimed Chan had threatened to kill them and their families if they ran.

“He said he knew everything about us,” Rush said at trial. “He even said he was carrying a gun.”

Sukumaran was arrested at the Melasti Hotel in Kuta with around 300g of heroin, along with the other three – Matthew Norman, Si Yi Chen and Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen. He earned the worst reputation at trial, criticised by the judges for not co-operating and at one stage claiming he had “amnesia”.

But the mules had fingered him as being one of the ringleaders who, along with Chan, had taped the drugs to their bodies. In 2006, Sukumaran and Chan became the first Australians sentenced to death in Indonesia. 

The sentence was upheld on appeal and again in a 2011 supreme court review. A bid for a second judicial review was knocked back in February 2015. President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was considered the pair’s best chance of winning clemency – friend to Australia as he claimed to be – but he left office without granting their application.

Incoming President Joko Widodo then signed their death warrants, denying them mercy and putting them on track to the firing squad. The footage of the pair most often replayed shows them handcuffed together before their sentencing. 

Both clad in black pants and white shirts, a menacing Sukumaran barrels through the media pack, lashing out at photographers. A grimacing Chan is towed along. By 2010, when SBS program Dateline visited them in Kerobokan jail, the defiance had vanished.

Chan joked that he was the only “Godfather” who lived at home and drove a 1999 Hyundai S-coupe.

“The Enforcer” was bemused that he’d become a “martial arts expert” in the media when he’d only done three months of training. By that stage, they admitted their criminality and stupidity. They were showing they had changed.

Sukumaran was studying for a degree in fine arts and had become an accomplished painter. The studio he lobbied for is used for the therapy and training of other inmates. Chan’s more outgoing personality found a home in the prison chapel and kitchen, where he mentored others and gave cooking classes to boost prisoners’ life skills.

Everyone who knew them attested to their transformation. For those who know them, the irony is not lost that Indonesia’s justice system now wants to kill two of its finest examples of rehabilitation.

Last-gasp Benteke penalty hands Sherwood first Villa win

Sadio Mane struck late to rejuvenate Southampton’s fading battle for Champions League qualification with a 1-0 home win against Crystal Palace to move them into fifth, while Sunderland came from behind to draw 1-1 at Hull City.


Aston Villa, who have never been relegated during the Premier League era, started the day second bottom and on a seven-game losing streak, their worst run for 52 years.

In his third game in charge, Sherwood avoided equalling Dick Taylor’s 1964 record of losing his opening three league matches in dramatic circumstances.

Villa nearly took the lead when West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster spilled a routine save but he managed to claw the ball to safety, with goalline technology proving it was a whisker away.

Gabriel Agbonlahor struck his first goal in 14 games to open the scoring after 22 minutes, latching onto Benteke’s knock on to slot the ball through the legs of Foster, sparking wild celebrations from Sherwood.

Fabian Delph nearly extended their lead but he hit the post with a long-range, curling effort before the visitors equalised after 67 minutes when Saido Berahino headed in from close range. It was the striker’s 12th league goal of the season.


Just as the match looked to be heading for a draw, hapless Foster fumbled the ball again and, in a desperate attempt to rectify his mistake, brought down Matthew Lowton to concede a penalty.

Belgium striker Benteke stepped up to coolly roll the ball in from the spot four minutes into added time.

“We kept at it and someone was looking down on us today. I’ll try anything, we are at that stage,” Sherwood told the BBC.

“We hadn’t won in 12 Premier League games and had to buck that trend. I think we deserved the three points and onwards and upwards.”

It was Villa’s first win in 13 league games and lifted them into 17th place on 25 points, three above the relegation zone.

The two sides will meet again in the FA Cup quarter-final at Villa Park on Saturday.

Southampton, who had won once and scored just one in their last five games prior to kick off, ended a wait of over six hours for a goal at St Mary’s when Mane struck in the 83rd minute.

In what had been a match low on quality, Mane produced a deft chip over Julian Speroni after the Palace keeper had parried a shot from substitute James Ward-Prowse.

Victory lifted Southampton to 49 points, one point outside the top four and a spot in European soccer’s elite club competition next season.

“It was crucial game to win today, now we have 10 days until the Chelsea game (at Stamford Bridge) and it makes the situation a lot more comfortable and I hope they will get total confidence back and play like we did before,” Saints boss Ronald Koeman said.

Hull City’s Dame N’Doye, a deadline day signing, scored his third goal in five games to give them the lead against Sunderland with an exquisite flick after 15 minutes.

The visitors then had manager Gus Poyet sent to the stands after a heated touchline exchange with his opposite number Steve Bruce.

Jack Rodwell headed in a equaliser with 13 minutes left to keep Sunderland in 16th place on 26 points, four above the relegation places and one point below Hull.

(Reporting By Sam Holden; editing by Toby Davis)

Qld demands changes to reef plan

Queensland’s new Labor government is pressuring Canberra to amend a key plan that could ward off an in-danger listing for the Great Barrier Reef.


The state government says a long-term plan for the reef, drafted by the former Newman government and the Abbott government, is deficient and must be amended before UNESCO meets in June to consider the reef’s World Heritage status.

Queensland is seeking urgent amendments to the draft Reef 2050 Long Term Sustainability Plan, which scientists have criticised as a blueprint for sustainable development not reef protection and conservation.

State Environment Minister Steven Miles wants an improved plan lodged as soon as possible, to give UNESCO time to consider it before it meets in Germany in June to consider the reef’s status.

Queensland wants the plan to include a ban on sea dumping of dredge spoil within the reef World Heritage area.

It’s also demanding a new taskforce to determine how to achieve an 80 per cent cut in nitrogen run-off, and a 50 per cent cut in sediment run-off onto the reef by 2025.

It wants an extra $100 million over five years for water quality initiatives, research, and help for farmers and fishermen to improve their practices.

And it says work must start on a new class of vessel to ensure bulk goods carriers travelling in the World Heritage area meet stringent safety codes.

“The new government has underlined the priority it places on protecting the future of our reef by taking action that will hopefully avoid UNESCO applying a World Heritage in danger listing,” Dr Miles said.

Action had also been taken to stop the former Newman government’s plans to remove a requirement to apply principles of ecologically sustainable development to the management of water resources.

“The LNP’s amendments (to the Water ACt) now will not come into effect. Its proposed changes caused serious concern for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority,” Dr Miles said.

Democrats savage Netanyahu speech

Several US Democrats irate over Benjamin Netanyahu addressing Congress over Iran’s nuclear program have blasted the Israeli prime minister as a fear-mongerer leading a stampede to war.


Dozens of House and Senate Democrats boycotted Netanyahu’s speech, arguing he should not have been invited by Republican leaders just two weeks before his own country’s elections and amid delicate international negotiations to rein in Iran’s nuclear program.

Other Democrats who attended appeared exasperated or annoyed, including top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi, who was often the last to rise for standing ovations led by Republicans approval of Netanyahu’s warnings.

“I was near tears… saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States … and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation,” she said.

Politicians slammed the visiting dignitary’s performance as an “affront”, “condescending”, and blatant “political theatre worthy of an Oscar”.

An impassioned Netanyahu warned the deal the Obama administration was negotiating with Tehran would merely leave the Islamic republic on a path to nuclear weapons and imperil the world.

The speech was “fear-mongering” that was “straight out of the Dick Cheney playbook”, congressman John Yarmuth told reporters, referring to the hawkish Bush-era vice president.

The speech was one of the most contentious in years in the House, and as many as 60 Democrats stayed away.

One of them was congressman Earl Blumenauer, who said Netanyahu time and again has gruffly pushed the US towards war.

“I’ve listened to his alarmist predictions. I listened to him cheerlead for the United States’ greatest single blunder in our history, the Iraq war,” Blumenauer said.

In Tuesday’s address, he added, Netanyahu “gave no alternative path forward, just… a series of demands”.

Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky bristled at Netanyahu’s antagonistic approach.

“What I heard today felt to me like an effort to stampede the United States into war once again,” Schakowsky said.

Several Democrats, including Senator Robert Menendez and Senator Chuck Schumer, appeared strongly supportive of Netanyahu, who was received warmly by a joint meeting of Congress.

And Republicans gave a rapturous welcome to Netanyahu, who was invited to Washington by House Speaker John Boehner without consulting the White House or Democratic congressional leaders, triggering uproar.

Chances of El Nino rise again: BOM

Renewed sea surface warming has again raised the chances Australia will be affected by a drought-inducing El Nino.


The Bureau of Meteorology says the sea surface on central and western parts of the tropical Pacific Ocean – a key indicator if the presence of an El Nino – have warmed by 0.2C to 0.3C in the past two weeks, with average temperatures for this part of the year in the region now about 2C above normal.

This has prompted the BOM prompted to change its El Nino Southern Oscillation tracker prediction from neutral to watch, just two positions short of the declaration of an El Nino event.

“This is largely the result of weakened trade winds and tropical surface currents in recent weeks. Weakened trade winds are forecast to continue, and this may induce further warming,” the BOM said in its fortnightly ENSO report.

El Ninos typically result in below-average winter and spring rainfall in eastern Australia and warmer than normal temperatures in the southern half of the continent.

Many parts of Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australia are already suffering a prolonged dry spell.

The BOM says all eight international weather forecasting models it surveys predict sea surface temperatures are likely to remain warmer than average.

Although the accuracy of the forecast is less reliable during the southern winter, the BOM says six of the eight models suggest indicate sea surface temperatures will exceed El Nino thresholds by mid-year.

Tropical Pacific sea surface temperatures have been highly variable variable since late 2014.

In January, following a dramatic cooling of temperatures, the BOM moved its ENSO tracker from alert, one step short of declaring an El Nino, to neutral, with a less than 25 per cent chance an El Nino would develop by winter,

First Villa win better than lottery jackpot – Sherwood

A stoppage-time Christian Benteke penalty handed Villa their first win in 13 league games and Sherwood his first points after three games in charge at the struggling club.


Victory lifted Villa, who have never been relegated in the Premier League era, from second-bottom to 17th in the table and arrested a seven-game losing streak in the league.

Sherwood believes the last-gasp win could be a turning point in his team’s season and said it was more important to him than winning a huge jackpot.

“My missus said to me this morning she was doing the EuroMillions lottery, 54 million pounds ($82.94 million)jackpot,” Sherwood told reporters. “I said I’d rather have three points.

“I think so (it’s a turning point). We have conceded late against Stoke (in a 2-1 home loss) and it is a real body blow, but to score one late is an excellent feeling and I thought it was thoroughly deserved.

“We are improving every game and we are still alive and kicking. It’s a massive football club and it is at the wrong end of the table.”

Villa have scored the fewest goals in the Premier League this season with 15 but showed a will to get forward and attack local rivals West Brom.

They recorded more shots on target (eight) than in any of their league games since May last year and the determination to be more dynamic going forward was a sign of Sherwood’s influence.

“We kept at it and someone was looking down on us today. I’ll try anything, we are at that stage,” the former Tottenham Hotspur manager said.

“We hadn’t won in 12 Premier League games and had to buck that trend. I think we deserved the three points and onwards and upwards.

“When you are at the bottom you have to grind out results…

“I don’t think we can do it the old fashioned way with blood and thunder, we have to play through teams.”

(Reporting By Sam Holden; editing by Toby Davis)