Australian Grandmother Sentenced To Death Over Drug Smuggling

Australian Maria Elvira Pinto Exposto is released from the High Court in Shah Alam outside Kuala Lumpur Malaysia on Dec. 27 2017

An Australian grandmother who said she was tricked into carrying drugs into Malaysia after falling for an online romance scam was Thursday sentenced to death after an earlier acquittal was overturned, her lawyer said.

Maria Elvira Pinto Exposto has been sentenced to death via hanging after allegeldy trying to move almost 1.1 kilos of crystal meth across the Malaysian border into Melbourne.

Exposto, arrested in Kuala Lumpur while in transit to Melbourne from Shanghai, has said she was decoyed into carrying the bag with the drugs by a friend of her online boyfriend, who claimed to be a U.S. soldier serving in Afghanistan.

She was found in possession of 1.1 kilos (2.4 lb) of crystal methamphetamine and faced a mandatory death penalty under Malaysia's draconian drugs laws.

Professor Monica Whitty's testimony helped secure Maria Elvira Pinto Exposto's initial acquittal, before an appeal court overturned it yesterday and sentenced the Cabramatta woman to death by hanging.

Judge Mohtarudin Baki told Exposto the only sentence he could deliver was "death by hanging".

According to SBS, Exposto's lawyers said she had gone to Shanghai to file documents in relation to her boyfriend's retirement from service in the USA army.

Late previous year, she was found not guilty of drug trafficking by the Malaysian High Court.

"The court believes the testimony of Maria in that she was an innocent carrier", Exposto's lawyer Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah said.

'American Idol' finale ends with a twist
The couple then performed a medley of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and "What a Wonderful World". 'MY GIRLFRIEND WON AMERICAN IDOL!' he tweeted that night.

She was acquitted of the death sentence in December, according to 9 News.

She was caught in Kuala Lumpur International Airport in December 2014.

Shafee slammed the ruling as "perverse" and said Exposto would make a final appeal to the country's top court.

Airport officials discovered the drug beneath a stitched-in patch on the inside of the backpack.

"I wish you good luck", he said in giving the unanimous ruling.

Malaysia has notoriously harsh drug laws with mandatory death sentences for anyone found guilty of carrying more than 50 grams of an illegal drug, according to the AP.

En route from Shanghai to Melbourne, Exposto said a friend of the man had asked she take a black backpack across with her.

Two Australians were hanged in Malaysia in 1986 for heroin trafficking - the first Westerners to be executed in the country - in a case that strained relations between the two countries.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade will continue to provide full consular assistance, she said.

Related News:



Most liked

Season ends for top-seeded women's golf after upset by Arizona
In the quarterfinals against UCLA, Pagdanganan won her match 1 up, her birdie on the 18th hole sending Arizona to the next round. Moore would win the 17th, and headed to the 18th with a stroke lead, hoping to secure the schools' third championship.

American Legion to host Memorial Day ceremony
The parade will begin at 10 a.m. and traverse Grand Ave. with veterans, service groups, horses and lots of patriotism. At 11:30 a.m., there will be an open house for all veterans and their families at the new Veterans Center at 311 N.

Hawaii volcano fissures MAP: How many fissures are active at Kilauea volcano?
Scientists say lava from Kilauea volcano in Hawaii is causing fireworks-like explosions as it enters the ocean. Kilauea is one of the most active volcanoes in the world and one of five on the Big Island of Hawaii .

Venezuela throws out U.S. diplomats for "conspiracies"
Maduro promised to present "evidence" that both diplomats were engaged in a political, military and economic "conspiracy". President Trump signed a new order which prevents American companies from buying debt from Venezuela .

US employee in China reports mysterious 'abnormal' sounds and pressure
The US State Department expelled 17 Cuban diplomats from its Washington embassy past year after the incidents came to light. Unlike their American counterparts, however, no Canadian envoy reported hearing any suspicious sound prior to falling ill.

Royal wedding 2018: Royal Family thanks public
Megan changed into another white gown, designed by Stella McCartney, and Harry exchanged his military uniform for a classic tux. Palace officials have been vague about Harry and Markle's honeymoon plans, but they are expected to soon take one.

Markets rise as Beijing and Washington avert trade war
Last month, the administration proposed tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports to protest the forced technology transfers. A week ago, Trump tweeted that he was working with Chinese President Xi Jinping to put ZTE "back in business, fast".

The Pope says God makes some people gay. Now get over it.
But his latest remark, if accurate, would mark an historic shift in attitudes towards homosexuality within the Catholic church. Mr Cruz spoke of his happiness after receiving a personal apology from Pope Francis for the abuse that he suffered.

Conte & Hazard Reflect On Chelsea's Season After FA Cup Final Triumph
Ruiz plays in the same position as ex-Red Devils midfielder, Michael Carrick, and Mourinho wants the 22-year-old at Old Trafford. He has not been as effective this season for Chelsea as he was past year - but none of the Blues players have been.

Donald Glover on Lando's sexuality in Solo: A Star Wars Story
The movie stretches out too long, and could have dropped a few subplots and action sequences that feel tacked on at the end. Lucas and Howard are no strangers to each other, having worked together on Lucas' pre-Star Wars film, American Grafitti .

Stephen Curry cooks Rockets as Warriors take 2-1 lead
We've got so many great players on this team that draw attention you've just got to be ready to shoot". Analysis: Just two possessions later, Iguodala's pass to Thompson gets by him, but it looks.

Oil prices move further upward
Oil traded near $71 a barrel as rising stockpiles and signs of slower demand growth countered concerns Iranian supplies will soon be curbed by sanctions.

Egypt's Sisi orders Gaza border opened for Ramadan: Twitter account
It says those approaching the fence have used explosive devices and firebombs, while soldiers have been shot at. Israel said it was acting in self-defense and showed evidence that many of those killed were Hamas operatives .

'Disgusted' officials file complaint against man for anti-immigrant rant
Schlossberg did not return calls to his home and office and emails from ABC News seeking comment. And reviewers on Google suggested his law firm be identified as a " Mexican restaurant ".

Revamped YouTube Music Free and Premium Launches Tues
YouTube Premium includes ad-free background and offline access to YouTube and YouTube Originals, on top of YouTube Music Premium . According to Recode , YouTube Music will eventually replace Google Play Music , Google's very similar music streaming service .