In the final months of life for Bali Nine duo Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaram, there has been plenty of opinions shared concerning their fate, the power of mercy, and the Indonesian Government. Australian columnist and journalist Andrew Bolt expressed his strong viewpoints concerning the “overreactions” in response to the executions.
But how much do we really know about the Bali Nine?
Here is a timeline of events leading from the moment the Bali Nine were arrested in 2005, to the execution of ringleaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaram in 2015.
APRIL 17 2005 – THE ARREST
- Nine Australian’s arrested in Bali for trying to smuggle over eight kilograms of heroin out of the country.
- Martin Stephens Scott Rush, Michael Czugaj, Renae Lawrence at Denpasar Airport with heroin strapped to themselves, Andrew Chan also arrested from a plane departing for Australia.
- Myuran Sukumaram, Tan Duc Thanh, Matthew norman and Si Yi Chen at the Maslati Hotel in Kuta Beach with around 300 grams of heroin in their possession.
APRIL 11-13 2005 – TRIALS BEGIN
- Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran are identified as the ‘ring leaders’ of the group.
FEBRUARY 13-15 2006 – FIRST SENTENCES ISSUED
- Lawrence, Rush, Stephens, Czugaj, Tan Duc Thanh, Si Yi Chen and Norman sentenced to life.
- Chan and Sukumaran sentenced to death by firing squad.
APRIL 27 2006 – SENTENCES ARE REDUCED
- Lawrence, Czugaj, Nguyen, Chen and Norman have their sentences reduced to twenty years.
- Life sentences for Rush and Stephens upheld.
SEPTEMBER 6 2006 – PROSECUTORS WIN APPEAL AGAINST SENTENCE REDUCTIONS
- Rush, Nguyen, Chen and Norman all sentenced to death.
- Stephens’s life sentence is upheld.
- Czugaj’s term is increased to life.
SEPTEMBER 8 2006 – PM JOHN HOWARD AVOIDS INTERVENTION
- Ausralian Prime Minister (at the time) John Howard makes a statement against intervening on behalf of the Bali Nine, as there were still issues to be heard by the Indonesian courts.
AUGUST 13 2010 – CHEN AND SUKUMARAN LODGE JUDICIAL REVIEW
- The ‘ring leaders’ offer remorse and ask for forgiveness of their crimes.
June 17 2011 – INDONESIAN PRESIDENT WILL HAVE FINAL SAY ON FIRING SQUAD
- The Supreme Court confirms that unless the Indonesian Government declares mercy, Chan and Sukumaran will face the firing squad.
DECEMBER 11 2014 – PRESIDENT REJECTS ANY FORM OF MERCY FOR BALI NINE
- Indonesian president Joko Widodo denies the appeal for mercy on drug traffickers.
JANUARY 2015 – ONLY MONTHS AWAY FROM EXECUTION
- Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott puts forward an appeal for mercy towards the Bali Nine ringleaders, it is rejected.
- Sukumaran and Chan sentenced to death in the next execution round.
FEBRUARY 2015 – MORE APPEALS FOR MERCY
- President Widodo pushes back 64 petitions for clemency
- Australian foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop makes an emotional plea to Indonesia to spare the lives of Chan and Sukumaran.
MARCH 2015 – #iStandForMercy
- Sukumaran and Chan are transported with a group of other drug traffickers to Nusakambangan Island (“execution Island”).
- Federal MPs hold a dawn vigil outside the Parliament House in Canberra.
26 APRIL 2015 – FINAL HOURS
- Chan and Sukumaran are given 72 hours notice of their execution.
27 APRIL 2015 – FINAL REQUESTS
- Sukumaran, an avid painter, wishes to paint in his final hours. He creates three artworks titled ’72 hours Just Started’ and his fourth is a heart drizzling with blood.
- Chan wishes to pray in his final hours and just before execution, he marries his long time girlfiend, Fibyanti Herewila.
29 April 2015 – THE EXECUTION
- Chan and Sukumaran are executed by firing squad with eight others. They all deny the opportunity to wear blindfolds.