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Bali bombers on death row to make final appeal

Lawyers for three Indonesian militants on death row over the 2002 Bali bombings are to make a final appeal to the Supreme Court after the men refused to seek a presidential pardon, one of the lawyers said.
/ Source: Reuters

Lawyers for three Indonesian militants on death row over the 2002 Bali bombings are to make a final appeal to the Supreme Court after the men refused to seek a presidential pardon, one of the lawyers said on Tuesday.

Achmad Michdan said he would ask the Supreme Court to review its decision to uphold earlier court decisions on the grounds the anti-terrorism law used to convict the men could not be used.

In July last year, the Constitutional Court annulled a key piece of legislation that had allowed the anti-terrorism law — passed after the Bali attacks — to be used against the bombers retroactively.

The legal option the lawyers will use is called a judicial review, and amounts to asking the Supreme Court to review its own decision. It is allowed only if new evidence is presented.

“This is the one reason for a judicial review, because those convicted could not be charged based on a law which did not exist when the incident took place,” Michdan told Reuters.

The deadly blasts on the resort island in October 2002 killed 202 people, mostly foreign tourists. The death row convicts, Iman Samudra, Amrozi and Ali Gufron, played leading roles.

Despite the Constitutional Court’s 2004 decision, authorities have said it would not affect the sentences against some 30 militants jailed over the Bali bombings because they were convicted in lower courts before that ruling.

Balinese have been demanding the speedy execution of the death row bombers in the wake of fresh bomb blasts on the island on Oct. 1 that killed 20 people.

Since none of the three has sought presidential clemency, the judicial review will be their last barrier between execution by firing squad.

Families of the three had also declined their chance to seek a presidential pardon on behalf of the men, but wanted lawyers to take any other necessary legal steps, Michdan added.

Police have blamed Jemaah Islamiah, an al-Qaida-linked network, for the 2002 atrocity.