Skip to main content

After 9 years in Indonesia prison on drug charges, Schapelle Corby walks free

By CNN Staff
updated 6:25 AM EST, Mon February 10, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Australian Schapelle Corby, 36, is set free from prison in Bali, Indonesia
  • She was convicted in 2005 for smuggling 9 pounds of marijuana
  • Corby and her lawyers maintain she was the victim of a setup

(CNN) -- Australian woman Schapelle Corby has walked out of a prison in Bali, Indonesia, after being convicted almost nine years ago of drug smuggling.

The 36-year-old was surrounded by a swarm of cameras and Australian network reporters to see her released on bail in a case that supporters say was a setup.

Covered in a hat and rushed into a waiting bus by security forces, she will be taken to a parole office for further processing.

Indonesian Justice Minister Amir Syamsuddin said Friday that Corby had been granted parole. He said Corby's parole review was one of more than 1,000 that had been completed.

A look back at Schapelle Corby's case
Indonesia grants Corby parole

Corby, 36, was convicted in May 2005 for smuggling 9 pounds (4.1 kilograms) of marijuana in a bag while arriving at Bali's Denpasar International Airport the previous October.

She has always maintained her innocence. Her lawyers argued the drugs were planted, possibly by airport employees involved in trafficking.

But the court found her guilty and sentenced her to 20 years in prison.

The punishment fueled anger in Australia, where many people said they felt Corby had been set up.

After exhausting the appeals process, Corby applied for clemency. A medical exam diagnosed her as suffering from acute depression with psychotic symptoms.

In 2012, Indonesia reduced her sentence by five years, laying the foundation for her parole application.

Corby appears unlikely to return to Australia anytime soon, though. Australian media have reported that she will have to remain in Bali on parole until 2017.

Some Indonesians have accused the authorities of giving Corby's case special attention. But the justice ministry says she's being treated the same way as other convicts in Indonesia.

READ: The drug smuggling case that gripped Australia

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 12:46 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The tragic killing of two cops could not have happened at a worse time for a city embroiled in a bitter public battle over police-community relations, Errol Louis says.
updated 10:20 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
North Korea warns the United States that U.S. "citadels" will be attacked, dwarfing the hacking attack on Sony that led to the cancellation of a comedy film's release.
updated 9:51 PM EST, Sun December 21, 2014
The gateway to Japan's capital, Tokyo Station, is celebrating its centennial this month -- and it's never looked better.
updated 11:21 AM EST, Sat December 20, 2014
More than 1.7 million children in conflict-torn areas of eastern Ukraine face an "extremely serious" situation, Unicef has warned.
updated 8:22 AM EST, Fri December 19, 2014
Boko Haram's latest abductions may meet a weary global reaction, Nigerian journalist Tolu Ogunlesi says.
updated 5:34 AM EST, Fri December 19, 2014
Drops, smudges, pools of blood are everywhere -- but in the computer room CNN's Nic Robertson reels from the true horror of the Peshawar school attack.
updated 9:43 PM EST, Wed December 17, 2014
The gunman behind the deadly siege in Sydney this week was not on a security watch list, and Australia's Prime Minister wants to know why.
updated 4:48 AM EST, Thu December 18, 2014
Bestselling author Marjorie Liu had set her sights on being a lawyer, but realized it wasn't what she wanted to do for the rest of her life.
updated 3:27 PM EST, Tue December 16, 2014
CNN's Matthew Chance looks into an HRW report saying Russia has "legalized discrimination against LGBT people."
updated 9:12 PM EST, Mon December 15, 2014
The Sydney siege has brought home some troubling truths to Australians. They are not immune to what are often called "lone-wolf" terror attacks.
Bill Cosby has kept quiet as sexual assault allegations mounted against him, but his wife, Camille, finally spoke out in defense of her husband.
updated 9:31 AM EST, Fri December 19, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT