Monday, December 22, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Tara Hack Music Video with Supporter Photos!

The picture I would have submitted!

My apologies, Morpheus, that I didn't get this to you on time - but this is what I would have included!

Tara Hack's "Saya Tidak Bersalah"

New York artist Tara Hack compiled a song about Schapelle Corby's plight after learning about it in the USA.

The song is a great production, done in reggae style (big up!). Tara tells Schapelle's story with astonishing simplicity and bluntness.

Great work, Tara - and I hope this song is spread far and wide!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Free Schapelle Corby OnLine Petition Reaches Critical Numbers

The petition down on the right sidebar has, as you can see, over 3000 signatures. The Australian federal government recently set up a commission to examine petitions from the community, and it appears the Free Schapelle Petition might soon be one of the ones up for consideration:

http://www.prweb.com/releases/2008/09/prweb1300784.htm

Schapelle Corby Picture of the Week, 5.10.2008



Wednesday this week will mark the fourth anniversary of Schapelle Corby's arrest in Bali, Indonesia. This photo was taken hours before that fatal event.

Much has changed since that photo was snapped by Rosleigh Rose. Schapelle now languishes in a Bali jail, Kerobokan. She is no longer free. Yet other things have not changed. While she suffers anxiety and depression, Schapelle is still the kind girl considerate of others and willing to crack a joke or let loose a bit of dry sarcasm when it suits the situation. Also, notably, she is still in the dark as to who is to blame for the drugs in her boogie board bag.

While a sad anniversary is passing this week, Schapelle's Supporters must remember to not get down ourselves. Emotional pain is easy to come by in this case--just try reading My Story to get an idea what I mean.

Supporters must, however, remain level-headed. When trying to understand this complex case four years in the making, one can get easily confused or distracted by certain elements. This is natural, but it must be put aside while trying to broaden understanding and knowledge by researching as objectively as possible. Conspiracies are easy to conjure and while they may serve to find a potential explanation or satisfy some gap of understanding, they are probably the unlikely version of events. Anger, also, must have its rightful place. A natural emotion, it can often lead to hasty actions that do neither Schapelle nor her supporters any good.

The path I prefer to take in this case is to research it as much as I can and also do what is necessary or possible to support Schapelle personally. In my case, this includes prayer and letters, as well as the occaisonal care package or crazy post card.

These are just a few of the avenues supporters may take. If you wish to write Schapelle, please do so. She genuinely appreciates supporters' notes:

Schapelle L. Corby
co/ LPM Kerobokan
Jl. Tangkuban Perahu Kerobokan
Denpasar, Bali, INDONESIA, 80117

Could It Have Been the Baggage Handlers after All?


A very interesting take on who the culprit might be in Schapelle's story. Full of detail and generally objective, though decidedly anti-Australian government:

Hello from the Blue

At least it must seem that way, no? Those who have had access to my previous blog might remember the New Year's promises I made to keep up regularly with this blog. Well, The Future forgot to inform my promises about this year's insanely busy schedule.

I never knew there could be this much work piled into one year. It's run, run, run always, it seems. Lately, I've been involved in various activities....particularly exciting given this year's US Presidential elections. As a registered Republican, I've been involved in many election-related activities: recruiting members, registering voters, and attending rallies. This past Thursday, I had the opportunity to travel to St. Louis and campaign at Washington University, the site of the Vice Presidential debate. Later, I went to Chaifetz Arena at Saint Louis University to attend a watchparty. The debate between Biden and Palin was telecast, and later, Sarah Palin came to speak. I'll post some pictures later.

In relation to Schapelle Corby's case, Tony Wilson published a book on Schapelle's case and the hype it has caused. Also, the Today Tonight staff got a late pass to Ethics School. Ha.

Well, here's to finishing the year stronger. To all readers, however many there are actually left, *cheers*

(with a Pepsi)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Religious Persecution in Indonesia

This article caught my eye because the issue of persecution against Christians is something I have been looking more into recently. The mention of Indonesia also proved sadly repetitive; I recieve regular updates from Voice of the Martyrs which detail cases of religious persecution in countries all over the world, and asks for prayer. Indonesia is mentioned quite a lot.

I also thought that this article would be notable for some Schapelle supporters, since it discusses the policies of Susilo Bambang Yudhohono towards Muslims as the Presidential election draws near in Indonesia.

........................

Attack forces Indonesian Christians off campus

By SARA SCHONHARDT, Associated Press Writer
Fri Aug 22, 3:10 AM ET


JAKARTA, Indonesia - Hundreds of Christian theology students have been living in tents since a mob of angry Muslim neighbors stormed their campus last month wielding bamboo spears and hurling Molotov cocktails.

The incident comes amid growing concern that Indonesia's tradition of religious tolerance is under threat from Islamic hard-liners.

In talks since the attack, the Arastamar Evangelical School of Theology has reluctantly agreed to shut its 20-year-old campus in east Jakarta, accepting an offer this week to move to a small office building on the other side of the Indonesian capital.

"Why should we be forced from our house while our attackers can walk freely?" asked the Rev. Matheus Mangentang, chairman of the 1,400-student school.

The government of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, which relies on the support of Islamic parties in Parliament, is struggling to balance deep Islamic traditions and a secular constitution. With elections coming next April, the government seems unwilling to defend religious minorities, lest it be portrayed as anti-Islamic in what is the world's most populous Muslim-majority country.

The July 25 attack, which injured 18 students, was the culmination of years of simmering tensions between the school and residents of the Kampung Pulo neighborhood.

Senny Manave, a spokesman for the Christian school, said complaints were received from neighbors about prayers and the singing of hymns, which they considered disturbing evangelical activity.

Several neighbors refused to comment, saying they feared that could further strain relations. A prominent banner, signed by scores of people, has been hung over an entrance to the neighborhood.

"We the community of Kampung Pulo demand the campus be closed and dissolved," it says.

The assault began around midnight, when students woke to the crash of stones falling on their dormitory roof as a voice over a loudspeaker at a nearby mosque cried "Allah Akbar," or "God is great" in Arabic.

The unidentified speaker urged residents to rise up against their "unwanted neighbors," said Sairin, the head of campus security, who goes by a single name.

The attack followed a claim that a student had broken into a resident's house, but police dismissed the charge.

Uneasy relations date to 2003, when neighbors began to protest the school's presence. Last year, residents set fire to shelters for construction workers to try to stop the campus from expanding deeper into the neighborhood. Some also questioned the legality of the school's permit.

Christian lawmaker Karol Daniel Kadang accused property speculators of provoking last month's incident to clear the land for more profitable use, after the school refused to sell out.

He also blamed the government for failing to build interfaith relations, which he and others believe are beginning to fray.

"People are still tolerant, but there is a growing suspicion among Muslims of others," said Prof. Franz Magnis-Suseno, a Jesuit priest who has lived in Indonesia for half a century.

He added that the police have failed to prevent both attacks on minorities and the forced closure of Christian churches and nontraditional mosques by mobs incited by radical Muslims.

"The state has some responsibility for this growing intolerance, namely by not upholding the law," he said.

A mob stormed a church service last Sunday in another east Jakarta neighborhood, forcing dozens of Christian worshippers to flee, said Jakarta Police Chief Col. Carlo Tewu. No arrests have been made.

Since being driven from campus, nearly 600 female students have been sleeping under suspended tarps at a nearby scout camp, where they had to dig trenches to keep water out during downpours. Classes are held with megaphones in the sweltering summer heat, under trees or the tarps. A similar number of male students live in a guesthouse. The remainder have returned to their families.

Food, water and school supplies are donated by church groups and community charities.

"We feel like refugees in our own country," said Dessy Nope, 19, a second-year student majoring in education. "How can you study here? I only followed 20 percent of my last lesson. It's difficult to concentrate."

Christians have not been the only targets for Muslim hard-liners, who this year set fire to mosques of a Muslim sect, Ahmadiyah, that they consider heretical.

In June, the government ordered members of the sect to return to mainstream Islam, sparking concern among activists who fear the state is interfering in matters of faith and caving in to the demands of radicals.

"We're living in a country where there are many religions, but the government cannot prevent the actions of fundamentalist groups," said Manave, the school spokesman. "The government cannot protect minorities."

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I Want to Believe

I reported earlier via a comment that the producers of the most excellent TV show 24 were using audience numbers from the X-Files movie I Want to Believe to see whether doing a 24 movie after going off-air would be successful. Hopefully, they don't lose hope. From what I understand, people flocked to the X-Files film, but not in overwhelming numbers. Fans liked it, but their audulation was drowned out by the critics.......who didn't.

Potential redeeming elements could be my thoughts that first, The Dark Knight edged Mulder and Scully's reunion out of the spotlight (or shoved it completely into the ground) and second, was it a coincidence that The X-Files: I Want to Believe aired on the weekend prior to the FBI's 100th anniversary?

You probably read that with a ho-hum reaction. Your reaction probably coincided with mine - for I highly doubt Dark Knight's airdate a mere few days prior to The X-Files was a conspiracy....nor do I seriously believe Chris Carter admired the Bureau that much - even despite Mulder and Scully's dedication to the organization.

This, therefore, is my reaction to the film, posted on the 24 Forum:

POTENTIAL SPOILER ALERT! (I reference people and issues, not events, read if you want)

At first, I was not that impressed. It seemed a lot of the dialogue was slightly cliched and forced....with certain issues the movie brought up, such as the stem cells, pedophile priest, as well as the photo of Bush played in timing with certain music, it seemed there was a push for more liberal views. I admit, though, that I thought playing the X-Files theme while showing Bush's photo was hilarious! Loved it!

Some of the acting, especially by the secondary characters, didn't seem to work well.

I was almost afraid that I wouldn't like the movie. But as it progressed, it tightened, and the plot and all the issues came to intertwine....and as I left the theater, I realized I'd witnessed a fantastic homage to the series.

All the questions brought up by the series--the things that made the series so irresistable--were brought to a head and played out wonderfully through everything that Mulder and Scully faced. Faith vs. science....or both? What is the spiritual realm like? What make up light and darkness? What is truth, and how do we find it? Can horrible persons be forgiven? How does one obtain that forgiveness? I Want to Believe addressed all of these in a very unique way.

I've read critics complain that the movie was more like an episode. I would have to agree with that. It did not seem to have the grandiose, theatrical, movie-like awe and wonder of other films....or even like that of Fight the Future. Whatever the reason for that, though, the subject matter of the film--the issues it raised--worked wonderfully within the very specific one-small-FBI-case context. I don't know if it was intentional to examine how great, expansive issues can arise through something small......or whether this was just the storyline they wrote.....but it worked. And I loved it!

I know I will have to see it a second time so that I can look once more at how they deal with these issues again.

It was great seeing Mulder and Scully back. I was slightly thrown off by their relationship in the movie, because I had imagined it would be different (I'm leaving out specifics for those who haven't seen the movie yet). But their interaction was there, and their humor. I loved Mulder's comment "Well, we'll just have to crawl in bed with him and kiss his holy a**." Then the ASAC's response to that.......hilarious! :D

I equally enjoyed the end scene during the credits. The X-Files score that played during the credits.....loved it! Mark Snow did a fantastic job throughout the movie. I thought the imagery of the ice to the tropics was beautiful to watch, and....well.....the bit you see at the end was nice, too. :D

All in all, I Want to Believe may not generate new fans....it may not be in the same vein as many eps in the series were theatrically....but while it failed in some aspects (theatrics, "feel" of the series, etc) it succeeded marvellously in others. Best of all, I think it did The X-Files well by perpetuating the questions that made the series great. It is definitely one to buy and keep.

Congratulations (sort of) to Schapelle and Renae

In honor of Indonesia's Independence Day, this August 17, the national government awarded Schapelle Corby and Renae Lawrence (of the Bali 9) sentence reductions. Schapelle's sentence is three months smaller now, and Renae's four.

This reduction comes as a result of Schapelle's and Renae's good and model behavior as prisoners at Kerobokan. It places Schapelle's release date down into the year 2024. I was happy myself to hear the news, but at the same time the 2024 figure is still sobering for its sheer length. Sixteen years away, yet......and Schapelle is 31 now.

It is my hope that Schapelle be cleared of the charges against her - because I believe she is innocent - and that her reputation be restored. I think Schapelle is a fantastic person who deserves all the prayers and encouragement we can give. She does not recieve them without giving back, as seen by her will to fight, her letters in return to supporters, and her efforts at maintaining good humor and goodwill. So, when the lady is released, I will be screaming and jumping for joy - even if it's only in 2024.

HLJ Random Quote of the Week

Someone at my apartment decided to get on the community computer and check out some news:
"Screw China!" - When she found out who had the most Olympic medals. Fortunately for her, the US later recouped the amount and surpassed the People's Republic. Maybe it also made her rethink her language.....

Monday, July 28, 2008

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Don't know if you'll *ever* read this, but....

ETA - I sillily got the wrong country. Brussels - not Belgium.

I still think Bud Beer belongs to St. Louis, though....


Saturday, July 12, 2008

New Allegations on Culprit in Corby Case

http://www.news.com.au/adelaidenow/story/0,22606,24009611-5006301,00.html

THE cannabis in Schapelle Corby's boogie-board bag belonged to her late father Mick, according to an Adelaide drug trafficker who claims he and Mick Corby were drug associates.

Malcolm McCauley said he sold the marijuana to Corby's late father Mick – and knew it was destined for Bali.
In an interview with a Sydney newspaper, McCauley claimed Mick Corby had a drug supply operation to the Indonesian holiday spot, which Schapelle knew about.

McCauley, who was released from jail in South Australia in May, is believed to have been offered up to $60,000 for his story by Seven's Today Tonight, and Nine's 60 Minutes is pursuing him.

It is understood 60 Minutes plans to try to interview him today.

Mick Corby, who died earlier this year of cancer, repeatedly denied knowledge of the Bali drugs, but admitted to a 1970s conviction for marijuana possession.

But McCauley said he was Mick Corby's marijuana supplier and had sold him the drugs found in Schapelle's boogie-board bag.

"This was no bush weed," he told a newspaper.

"It was excellent South Australian hydro, and it had an excellent reputation in Bali." He claimed Mick Corby used US$1000 in cash bribes to get his drug shipments through customs in Bali.

The drugs were then distributed among surf and souvenir shops, from where it was sold to tourists and expats, he alleged.

McCauley said it was a well-organised system and the marijuana usually breezed through the airport because of the bribes.

But when the cash bribe was pocketed before Schapelle's boogie board reached security at Bali airport, she took the blame.

McCauley maintains that Schapelle knew her father was a drug dealer and knew about the trips to Bali.

Last week, Mick Corby's cousin, Allan Trembath, claimed Mick had asked him to help ship drugs in Queensland, but police said they had "no evidence to link Michael Corby with involvement in the drug trade".

The McCauley-Corby link came to light in May, 2005, when police raided McCauley's home and found 15kg of cannabis, $60,000 in cash and photographs of McCauley visiting Schapelle Corby in Bali's Kerobokan prison.

He claimed then to have met Schapelle's mother, Rosleigh Rose, while visiting the Bali court to observe Schapelle's trial.

McCauley was in hiding yesterday after making the claims and repeatedly refused to speak to Sunday Mail journalists.

"Malcolm says he doesn't want to talk to anybody, he has been hounded a bit," his estranged wife, Kathleen McCauley, said.

Ms McCauley expressed dismay about her husband's revelations, slamming the confessions as "not very good". She said she did not know the Corbys, but refused to comment further.

"I'm keeping out of it," she said.

The couple's daughter, Kelly, said her father had never spoken to her about dealing drugs or knowing the Corbys.

"He never told me about that," she said.

However, she said she was not concerned about the explosive revelations. "It is water off a duck's back," she said.

In Brisbane yesterday, Rosleigh Rose refused to comment on the latest allegations, saying only: "We're not talking to the media. Go away."

Corby is serving the fourth year of a 20-year jail term in Bali, having exhausted all her appeal processes.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Schapelle Corby's Birthday

I found this article about how Schapelle passed her 31st birthday, a b-day once more spent behind bars.

If you will read on, you'll see that supporters from the Free Schapelle Forum not only got mentioned in an Aussie newspaper (gasp!) but mailed Schapelle a bouquet of a dozen white roses and orchids. A beautiful gift to be sure! I know Schapelle loved it!

Pizza and white roses for Schapelle Corby, 31 today

SCHAPELLE Corby turned 31 today but it was a low-key affair behind bars - pizza with her sister and a friend and some white roses and orchids from her support group back home.

Still recovering from depression which has plagued her, there was no big celebration or birthday cake in Kerobokan Jail - just some little cakes with icing and some juice.

Earlier in the day a bunch of 12 white roses together with orchids was delivered. From the Free Schapelle Forum, the card said: "To our dearest Schapelle, we all hope that you can take comfort knowing that you are in our thoughts and that these flowers might help brighten your day. We love you Pellie and won't give up!!

The flower delivery man who delivered them said he had taken Corby flowers on four other occasions and he was surprised yesterday at how pale she was looking.

Sister Mercedes and a close family friend were the main visitors, bringing some pizza and juice and little cakes. But there were no candles and no happy birthday song.

Earlier Dr Lely Setiawati, the psychiatraist treating Corby since her depression hit hard almost three weeks ago, also paid a quick visit.

Corby spent more than two weeks in hospital after being admitted with severe depression and was returned to the jail late on Tuesday this week.

She is still under treatment and medication and is back in the same jail cell with five cellmates.

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,23999629-5001021,00.html

Schapelle Corby Returns to Kerobokan

Schapelle Corby has now returned to Kerobokan Jail following a two-weeks' stay in Banglah hospital for treatment for severe depression and nervous breakdown. While still on medication, Schapelle has improved and was warmly welcomed back by her cellmates.

I will continue to pray for Schapelle - with all she has suffered, her depression is understandable. I plan on getting off a letter to her soon.

If you would like to mail Schapelle a word of encouragement, she would love to hear from you. Supporters' letters genuinely lift her spirits. Her address:

Schapelle L. Corby
LPM Kerobokan
Jl. Tangkuban Perahu Kerobokan
Denpasar, Bali
INDONESIA, 80117

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Championships Photos!

Post-Match congratulations - even though Federer was disappointed in his loss, his mutual respect for Nadal is evident.

The moment of victory. I think his racquet bounced several times!




Climbing atop the commentators' box - note the close scores on the scoreboard! The guy with his chin in his hand looks like he's watching a boring soap opera instead of one of the most exciting matches in Wimbledon history.....have yet to figure that one out.

Nadal's coach and uncle, Toni, reaches to help him up.

Celebrating across the commentators' box


With the Spanish flag.....and Lady Margaret Thatcher!

Trophy presentation


Wimbledon Champion

The two winners. The way this match went, there is no other way to describe Nadal and Federer--no matter what sort of trophy they hold.

A fabulous effort, Roger! Here's to your ten more years!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Heathen or Tennis Fan?

Immediately after waking up at 8:00am today, I flipped on the TV and began watching the Wimbledon gentlemen's finals between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

If anyone is reading this post, you may remember a previous blog post of mine (in an earlier blog) in which I discussed the rivalry between these two. John McEnroe exclaimed "Long live this rivalry!" after Federer's win last year at the Championships Wimbeldon. This year, John McEnroe placed their rivalry in the chronicles alongside historic rivalries such as Andre Agassi vs. Pete Sampras and Bjorn Borg vs. Jimmy Conors, even alongside himself in Bjorn Borg vs. John McEnroe. It is exhilirating to watch Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal - the best in today's tennis. With their determination, their best only pushes the other man to even greater heights.


I scrambled to get breakfast and put on my church clothes and makeup during commercial breaks - difficult since MSNBC gives such short ones during the Championships. At last Nadal was up one set, 4-3 in the second.....and I had to go to church. It was 10am for me, and I reluctantly pulled myself away and got on the road. I hated to miss play, but I couldn't be a heathen, could I?

Earlier, I had thought thus: Be like the prophet Elijah--pray that it rains! Get a rain delay going at Wimbledon while I'm in church, and that way I can have the best of both worlds! I was even considerate of the players: during said rain delay a'la Elijah, the players could prayerfully refresh themselves so as to give me their best effort upon my return from the service. Unfortunately, there was no rain when I departed home.

I got to church, and the worship service was fantastic. The sermon was good; the pastor and his wife ministered the last portion on a series about how to affair-proof your marriage. The topic today was order in the home and tips to avoid bad communication.

During Affair-Proofing Your Marriage Communication Tip #2, there was a phone call from a family member overseas. Another relative (who never gets sick a day in his life) had been admitted to the hospital last night, so I took the call seriously. I didn't reach it in time and the caller got hung up on, at which point she couldn't be reached again. Given the seriousness of the situation, I got back in the car and headed home, hoping nothing was wrong. I also wondered whether walking out in the middle of someone's monologue made for bad communication? Maybe that was Tip #3.

I got home and found out nothing had happened after all. My ill relative was still in the hospital, but there was no further bad news. I was happy to get home a little early--perhaps now I could watch more of the match. So I turned on the TV and to my delighted surprise, this is what I found:




It DID rain!!

And best of all: they only got to 4-5 Federer in the third set! I could still see the end!

Well, the end was a long time coming. For over 3 more hours and one more rain delay, Nadal and Federer pushed each other into five sets in what became the longest match in Wimbledon Men's Singles Finals history. The total time was well over 6 hours--almost seven--and total play extended beyond four. I have never see a more neck and neck game. The final score: 6-4 6-4 6-7(8) 6-7(10) 9-7. Since neither man could break the other's serve, it was an epic, exciting match to watch

A second rain delay in the fifth set pushed the match past 2:00pm, at which time my local station was set to cover the St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs baseball game. When the rain delay at the All England Club ended, they split the screen to show both baseball and tennis. The problem: I hate baseball. The second problem: the voiceover was all for baseball. So I got on my computer and listened to the Wimbledon Live Radio (in lieu of a subscription to Wimbledon Live Video) but the broadcast (in which the announcers debated their possession of lozenges) did not synch with the TV feed. I finished out the match watching it in silence, squinting to see the scores on the tiny split screen.

The most exciting match I've seen in a long time (sorry, Rafa.....sentimentally, it's hard to beat Andre Agassi's series of epic five-setters towards a heart-breaking retirement at the 2006 US Open) ended with Federer hitting a forehand short into the net, and Nadal collapsed onto his back in celebration, then jumped up into the stands over the commentator's box to thank his family and coach. Spanish flag draped over his shoulder, he ran over the top of the digital scoreboard to the Royals Box to shake the hands of Prince Felipe and Princess Letizia of Spain.


Federer had tears in his eyes, and while I admit I favored Nadal, my reaction to Rafa's victory was also muted. Federer, had he won, would have beaten Bjorn Borg's "unbeatable" record of 5 straight Wimbledon titles, becoming the first man in over 120 years to do so. Federer possessed an astounding winning streak on number of matches won on grass. But both men are top players in tennis, the best there are today. To see Federer battle with his entire being and fall short of such a great achievement--on an error no less--was painful to watch.

Nadal battled the world's #1-ranked player and came out victorious. While Federer did make a few surprising errors (and was broken 4 times by Nadal), both men played exceptionally well, and Nadal's victory was deserved.

The supremacy of their technique and strategy is unmatched. The scoreboard is a testament to the power, endurance, and skill of both Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal

I still debate whether I was a heathen for being happy to leave church early and happy there was a rain delay....but I was well rewarded.

Federer stated earlier in the tournament that even at 26 years old he believes he has 5-10 more years left in him (enough to go for another 6-championship streak??) and based off his performance today, it appears he would be right. And he'd be in good company, since the amazing Andre Agassi also retired at 36. Nadal has won his fifth grand slam title (with a four-win streak at Roland Garros) and today he narrowed the gap among the top grass court players. The man is only 22 years old. There will be a lot more proceeding from these two players, and hopefully their tennis destinies will ensure they meet many more times.


Indeed - LONG LIVE THIS RIVALRY!

HLJ Sidenote: I will post match photos and player interviews when they are made available.


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

The US Exposure to "Ganja Queen"

I found an excellent article while perusing the net in search for what specifically US news sources had to say about Schapelle Corby.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25442796/

The author of this article, Michelle Nichols, provides a summary of the film as well as a thorough and sympathetic overview of Schapelle Corby's case. It is a worthwhile read, and I hope Americans learning about Schapelle's case will take a similar approach as Ms. Nichols and do research to discover what happened from Schapelle's conviction to her present hospitalization for depression following the failed final appeal in March.

A Preview

"Can she possibly be that good of an actor?" - Good question......

"Ganja Queen" Airing Schedule

If you would like to record "Ganja Queen" or have missed its original June 30 air date, you may view it again on the following HBO channels:


DATE/TIME


Tue 7/1 11:30 PM - HBO EAST
Tue 7/1 11:35 PM - HBO LATINO EAST
Wed 7/2 02:30 AM - HBO WEST
Wed 7/2 02:35 AM - HBO LATINO WEST
Thu 7/3 08:00 PM - HBO EAST
Thu 7/3 08:00 PM - HBO LATINO EAST
Thu 7/3 11:00 PM - HBO WEST
Thu 7/3 11:00 PM - HBO LATINO EAST
Sun 7/6 12:45 PM - HBO SIGNATURE EAST
Sun 7/6 03:45 PM - HBO SIGNATURE WEST
Sun 7/6 10:30 PM - HBO SIGNATURE EAST
Mon 7/7 01:30 AM - HBO SIGNATURE WEST
Thu 7/10 12:05 AM - HBO2 EAST
Thu 7/10 03:05 AM - HBO2 WEST
Tue 7/15 11:00 AM - HBO2 EAST
Tue 7/15 02:00 PM - HBO2 WEST
Sat 7/19 05:30 PM - HBO SIGNATURE EAST
Sat 7/19 08:30 PM - HBO SIGNATURE WEST

http://www.hbo.com/apps/schedule/Schedu%20...%20_ID=628965

"Ganja Queen" on HBO - Comments Welcome

The Janine Hosking documentary providing behind-the-scenes examinations of the case of Schapelle Corby has aired on HBO.

If you have seen this documentary on Schapelle and her case, please feel free to leave your comments.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Humorous Typo in Previous Article :D

In the article I just posted on Belize (yes, you *did* see Belize in world news), I noticed an interesting typo. Read for yourself and laugh:

"We changed things in he midfield to be able to attack more. We still should have had more scoring opportunities. Butt we're not unhappy. It was a combination of our play and their play and it was tough for us the way they played back."

Belize? In the World News? What?

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/S/SOC_WCUP_BELIZE_MEXICO_TXOL-?SITE=TXBRY&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT

Schapelle Corby Picture of the Week - 15.6.08


The start of this week marks Father's Day for most of the world. This picture of Schapelle's mum Rose holding a photo of Schapelle I thought beautiful to post today.

It has been several months since the passing of Michael Corby, Schapelle's father, to cancer. Mr. Corby died before he got a chance to return to Bali to see Schapelle, a promise he earnestly desired to keep. Michael's passing was a sad event for the entire Corby family, including Schapelle, who mourned his passing from Kerobokan prison.

Much has occurred since that death. Schapelle's final appeal failed, and her sister Mercedes won a landmark judicial lawsuit against Channel Seven for defamation. Much more has occurred since May 27, 2005 that makes these events more poignant. Through the time that Schapelle Corby became known throughout Australia, several things have remained constant: the strength of the Corbys in what they believe and the strength of the Corbys as a close family.

That strong familial closeness--despite the loss of a father member; evident through the emotional, spiritual, and literal trials--is captured beautifully in this photo.

My best wishes, Ros, Schapelle, Mercedes and family, on this Father's Day.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

RSS Feed Posted on "Ganja Queen"

Hello all -

I have posted an RSS feed link about the upcoming HBO airing of Janine Hosking's "Ganja Queen" on Schapelle Corby. The feed is to discussions from the HBO official forum on the documentary.

I call on all Schapelle Supporters to visit the forum and look into posting comments if you would like. It is unfortunate that the "Ganja Queen" discussion is one of the least-visited threads.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Schapelle Corby Picture of the Week - 25.5.08


Not of Schapelle, but of Mercedes and Stuart Littlemore, her attorney. After their win, and how happy they are!!!
I figured that given the news of this week, this picture was warranted.

CONGRATULATIONS MERCEDES!

Take That, Anna Coren!

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23782051-2,00.html

Mercedes Corby and Channel 7 Settle Case

Seven Network settles Mercedes Corby defamation case

By Evyn Testoni and Adam Bennett

May 30, 2008 06:46pm

Channel Seven settles Corby defamation case
Walks by the Today Tonight studio after win
Says network chose ratings over truth

MERCEDES Corby will pocket a large payout from the Seven Network after winning a defamation case over its interviews with her former best friend.

Seven tonight announced it had reached a settlement with Ms Corby's lawyers to pay her an undisclosed sum, after a jury yesterday found she had been defamed by the network.

"The Seven Network has concluded a confidential settlement with Mercedes Corby's lawyers this afternoon,'' it said in a statement.

"There will be no further statements as the terms of the settlement preclude either party making any further comment regarding that settlement.''

A NSW Supreme Court jury yesterday found three Today Tonight programs and one news bulletin, broadcast in February last year, had defamed Ms Corby, the 33-year-old sister of convicted drug smuggler Schapelle Corby.

The programs centred on interviews with 35-year-old Jodie Power, a one-time Corby family friend.

The Today Tonight programs were found to have conveyed defamatory meanings, including that Ms Corby was a drug smuggler, a drug dealer and posed a threat to the safety of Ms Power.

Today's settlement would appear to be a case of Seven cutting its losses after losing its legal battle with Ms Corby.

The settlement means the Supreme Court will no longer have to decide damages in the case.

A short hearing will be held on Monday to declare the case over.

The settlement means both sides - but particularly Seven - will avoid having to pay for a further three or four days of legal argument over the amount of damages to be awarded.

Seven's legal costs in the five-week-long case would have been considerable.

It had already paid Ms Power $100,000 for the interviews and also gave the mother-of-two boys two all-expenses paid overseas holidays.

But the settlement also spares Mercedes Corby from further cross examination over her past drug use.

Outside court this morning, Ms Corby told reporters she has been looking forward to addressing the court on the issue of damages.

"This is a major victory for me and my family,'' she said.

"Living with these disgusting allegations has been difficult and hurtful.

"I'm relieved Today Tonight has been held accountable for their ... story.

"It is sad when a hunt for ratings overtakes the truth.''

Ms Corby said she hoped the current affairs program had learned a lesson from her legal win.

"I really hope that in future, Today Tonight thinks hard before broadcasting attacks and lies about somebody,'' she said.

"It may be just showbiz and ratings for Today Tonight, but it is real people they hurt.''

Ms Corby said today she now planned to spend more time with her family, including Schapelle, jailed in Bali for 20 years for smuggling 4.1kg of cannabis into Indonesia inside a bodyboard bag in 2004.

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23782051-2,00.html

Thursday, May 29, 2008

MERCEDES CORBY WINS DEFAMATION TRIAL AGAINST CHANNEL 7!

Corby wins court case

Malcolm Brown
May 29, 2008 - 6:51PM


Mercedes Corby has won her defamation case against Channel Seven.

Corby, sister of Schapelle Corby - jailed for attempting to smuggle marijuana into Bali in 2004 - had claimed that she was grossly defamed in the Today Tonight programs.

The claims were that she had asked her then best friend, Jodie Power, to smuggle drugs into Bali; that she had confessed, herself, to smuggling marijuana; that she was guilty of smuggling marijuana; that she was knowingly involved in Schapelle Corby's smuggling and that she had possessed marijuana.

Ms Corby further complained that the program conveyed the meaning that she was a threat to the safety of Ms Power, who had made strong claims against her and the Corby family in the television programs and that Ms Corby had denied Schapelle Corby's lawyers the chance to prove Schapelle's innocence.

Justice Carolyn Simpson, who gave directions to the jury for three hours today, said that it had been conceded on Ms Corby's behalf that she had smoked marijuana but only on a few occasions years ago.

It has been argued by Stuart Littlemore, QC, representing Ms Corby, that technically during the brief time she had handled marijuana, she had "possessed it".

But the jury had to decide whether such an allegedly fleeting contact with the drug made it "substantially true" that Ms Corby was guilty of possession.

After six hours, the jury found Seven's defence of truth had failed on all but one of the defamatory imputations, namely that Ms Corby had possessed marijuana.

Ms Power shook her head and was visibly upset after hearing the verdict, and had to be calmed by those around her.

As they left the court, Power shouted "liar" in Ms Corby's direction, as Ms Corby embraced her lawyers.

Outside court, Ms Corby told reporters it had been a difficult time.

"I've still got more to do but I'm really happy with the outcome," she said.

The parties will have to return to court tomorrow to address the imputation found to be true.

During the hearings, Mr Littlemore said his client was "an ordinary Australian" subjected to a "trial by media" solely because her sister, Schapelle, was "locked up in a stinking jail in Bali".

Schapelle Corby is serving 20 years in prison after being convicted of smuggling 4.1kg of cannabis into Indonesia inside a bodyboard bag in 2004.

Seven paid Ms Power $100,000 for the interviews and also gave the 35-year-old two all expenses paid overseas holidays.

In her evidence, Ms Power said she had seen Ms Corby, 33, use marijuana, speed, cocaine and shabu - a type of methamphetamine.

The jury was shown two photos of Ms Corby with a pipe, shaped like a penis, which Ms Power said was used to smoke marijuana.

Ms Power also alleged Ms Corby had admitted to her that she had internally concealed marijuana and smuggled it into Bali, and had asked her to do the same.

When she took the stand, Ms Corby denied the smuggling allegations, rejected claims she took cocaine, shabu, and speed, and also denied selling marijuana or speed.

She said her drug use was limited, and her own letters referring to her drug use were written when she was "young and immature" and trying to look "cool".

Mr Littlemore contended Ms Power's brain had been "fried" by her own drug use, which the court was told had rendered her delusional.

with AAP

http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/cor ... 90387.html

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Bring It On!!!!

'The X-Files - I Want to Believe' is soon to be released! Less than two months to go!

New Blog Added!

HLJ has made one more fantastic addition to the linksbar! Brian, an active member of the FreeSchapelle forum, has created a Schapelle-support blog called Island Time. Brian graciously allowed me to make the addition, and has responded in kind by adding Hacia la Justicia to his linkslist.

Here, once more, is the link to Island Time. Enjoy!

http://islandman-islandtime.blogspot.com/

Saturday, May 17, 2008

A Worthwhile Photo Essay

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/gallery/0,22056,5022063-5010140,00.html

This is a photo essay depicting photographs submitted for the defense of Channel 7 in the current defamation trial. Only about 4 pictures are actually relevant for the defense. The rest, interestingly, would seemingly do more to win people to Schapelle's case. They show images of Schapelle and her family having fun with each other, with friends, and on vacation.

For its relevance to the defamation trial, and also for its value in telling Schapelle's story (many of the pictures have never before been seen), I post the link here.

Michael Corby, Schapelle's father, recently passed away from prostate cancer. Included in this photo essay is a very sweet picture of Schapelle and Michael. I am sure the family values that photo particularly.

A Defamation Trial Overview by Mr. Garry Linnell

This article was posted on the FreeSchapelle Forum and originated from the Herald Sun. Curse words aside, I found it a fascinating article. It provides an excellent overview of the history of the defamation trial, and Mr. Linnell, the author, presents both Mercedes' and Jodie's sides well. Written with an excellent writing style, which we here at HLJ just love, the article is quite an enjoyable and informative read.

------------------------

Mercedes Corby defamation case a real-life drama

Garry Linnell

May 10, 2008 12:00am

http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,23673392-662,00.html

The Mercedes Corby defamation case has shown well-aimed mud will always stick, writes Garry Linnell.

WHEN the first chill nights arrive heralding the coming of another winter, Rosleigh Rose makes her way into the kitchen and starts preparing tomato jam. She likes the stuff.

"Has a bit of a kick to it," she says. "Good for winter."

But today it hasn't quite worked out to plan.

The matriarch of the Corby clan, a mother with one daughter in prison 4000km away and another locked in a vicious courtroom battle trying to clear the family name, has just burned her latest batch.

She's been too busy yapping on the phone in her Queensland home and being distracted by news from Sydney.

"Now look what you've made me do," Rosleigh tells her caller.

What should have been sweet and hot has turned bitter. It's a taste the Corbys have grown accustomed to in recent years, ever since they were catapulted from suburban obscurity into the harsh, unrelenting public scrutiny that accompanied her daughter Schapelle's arrest in Bali.

Rosleigh shrugs and declares she will simply have to start again. If only it was always that easy.

Imagine it, Rosleigh. Imagine you had the chance to scrub the pot clean and wipe away the last four years.

No boogie board bag weighed down with a 4kg stash of marijuana. No Schapelle wasting the best years of her life in a rank Indonesian jail.

No packs of TV hounds raking through your lives.

And no trying to make jam with the grandkids at your feet while daughter Mercedes sits in the Supreme Court in Sydney, listening to her dyed-blonde former best friend tell the world that your family are drug runners.

J ODIE Power brushes a strand of lank hair from her face. The fairness accentuates a deep tan. The constant clenching of her jaw exaggerates her high cheekbones.

This is room 11E of the Supreme Court.

It's white, small, and the airconditioning whispers so quietly you can hear the growling and small moans from stomachs in the public seats.

But despite, or more likely because of, a succession of sometimes tawdry, sensational claims, appetites for this saga have been far from whetted.

Power, rake thin in a dark jacket, stares at the man in the wig who has spent days accusing her of being a liar.

Stuart Littlemore, QC, pursued a relentless campaign against tabloid current affairs programs during his stint years ago as host of the ABC's Media Watch program.

Littlemore's questioning of Power, the key witness in Mercedes Corby's defamation action against the Seven network's Today Tonight program, has been aggressive and already earned him a rebuke from the judge for bullying.

At one point in his cross-examination, he asked Power, who has admitted to a lengthy history of drug use, about the presence of cocaine at a party.

"If there was cocaine there, you would have sucked it up like an industrial-strength vacuum cleaner, wouldn't you?" Littlemore asked.

Power: "No."

Last year she was paid $100,000 by Seven to air claims on Today Tonight that Mercedes was a regular drug user, had smuggled drugs and that the Corby family had a long history of drug use.

Littlemore has told the court Power was motivated by "money, hatred and celebrity" to go public, is a liar and that "there is really nothing that Channel 7 will stop at in lying to its audience".

Littlemore's opponent and counsel for Seven, Tom Hughes, QC, has told the jury Mercedes was a frequent drug user who was "involved in this vile trade", and that there was evidence she had sold drugs in Japan and Indonesia.

It has already been a case filled with all the staples of television drama.

The Miracle Diet! (the drug speed -- your path to rapid weight loss). Sex! (all-day sessions fuelled by methamphetamines). Busted! (marijuana hidden in vaginas).

But it has also become a tale of broken friendships and busted dreams.

And while the case may be centred around Mercedes and her bid to clear her name, it has also exposed the fierce rivalry for ratings between Nine's A Current Affair and its Channel 7 opponent.

For the past four years the Corby saga has been the main battleground for the war between the two shows.

Soon after Schapelle's arrest in Bali, Nine signed Rosleigh, providing flights and accommodation in Bali for her to regularly visit her daughter.

ACA's ownership of the Corby side of the story gave it a big advantage in the prized fight for 6.30pm supremacy.

But Power's allegations last year rewarded Today Tonight with a sizeable victory at the start of a new ratings year.

Her claims also seemed to swing public opinion against Schapelle, with several online polls showing those polled had changed their minds about her innocence.

Littlemore has told the court he had a letter from Seven to Power detailing "what answers to give, otherwise she wouldn't get the money".

Power took a lie detector test on the program and failed, breaking down on air.

Littlemore told the court Power's televised tears were not over the breakdown of her long-running friendship with Mercedes, but over the fact she had failed a lie detector test set up to prove her claims.

"What she does is break down at the enormity of the lies she is telling. She'd just done her dough. She knew: No show, no dough," he said.

Power passed another polygraph test and was duly paid.

She has told the court she had asked for the cheque to be sent to a private post office box and needed the money to help meet legal costs for a bitter marital breakup.

Power sits in the gallery, her time in the witness box over, watching Littlemore cross-examine her mother, Margaret Campbell.

She brushes aside another strand of hair, and then wipes tears before standing and walking out of the court.

A week earlier, Mercedes had also sobbed and left the room after breaking down when Littlemore briefly mentioned her father, who died recently.

Margaret Campbell has been telling the jury how angry she had been with Mercedes for allegedly tricking her into transporting a brick-sized package of marijuana from the Gold Coast to her daughter, who was then in Byron Bay.

Campbell said her fury led to her telling Power she was a "f---ing bitch".

She said she had telephoned Mercedes and told her: "Never do anything like that again or I will cut your balls out and hand them to you on a silver platter."

Campbell agrees she has seen her daughter smoke drugs in front of her children.

But it is only when she details Power's marriage problems, including allegations of beatings and other abuse, that Power gets up and leaves.

Littlemore asks Campbell why, after defending her daughter on Today Tonight and backing her claims about the Corbys, she rang A Current Affair two days later and said the Corbys were a nice family.

Campbell becomes animated and says she wanted everyone's lives to return to normal.

But now there is no returning to normal. They are all in the same jam and no one, it seems, will avoid being burned.

Power and Mercedes Corby met on the Gold Coast in 1992.

Power told the court they smoked marijuana, which they usually bought from Mercedes' brother, Michael.

Two years later they went to Japan, where Power says Mercedes introduced her to speed and "shabu" -- another term for methamphetamine or ice.

Power has told the court Mercedes showed her how to smoke shabu: "It was an inverted bit of foil. You smoke it through a straw. It was unusual so I asked, 'What is it'?"

But it was not until a holiday in Bali four years later with then-boyfriend Steve Power claimed Mercedes persuaded her to try shabu.

"She told me it was shabu and that it's pretty good and you can f--- all day."

Asked about the drug's effects, Power said: "Steve and I had sex all day."

Hughes, in his opening address, said Mercedes had introduced Power to these drugs, and he had evidence to show she sold shabu in Japan and Indonesia, and speed and pot in Australia, in league with her brother, Michael.

As part of the legal action, Mercedes is also suing Today Tonight host Anna Coren and producer Bryan Seymour.

Littlemore has told the hearing Coren had made a "shamelessly false assertion" that Power had received death threats after making her claims, when in fact she was on an all-expenses paid holiday in Canada, courtesy of Seven.

The Seven network is pleading truth and contextual truth as its defence. There is at least another week left of allegations and cross-examinations.

And then the four-person jury will be left to decide.

Meanwhile, Rosleigh Rose will remain in Queensland, listening for the phone and waiting for winter to arrive.

Maybe it already has.

"We're All Innocent": Mercedes' Testimony


Tearful Mercedes Corby takes the stand

By Amy Coopes
May 12, 2008 05:17pm
-
MERCEDES Corby has denied smuggling or dealing drugs, or lying about her family's involvement in the drug trade.

Ms Corby today declared Schapelle Corby innocent of drug smuggling, fighting back tears as she told the NSW Supreme Court that her sister needed her family by her side to keep her sane.

Schapelle Corby is serving a 20-year sentence in a Bali prison after being convicted of drug smuggling in 2004.

Dressed in a black shirt, grey skirt and black, knee-high boots, 33-year-old Mercedes Corby today took the stand in her defamation claim against the Seven Network.

Ms Corby is suing Seven and a number of its staff for defamation over allegations made by her former best friend, Jodie Power, on the Today Tonight program and Seven news in February last year.

Ms Power gave interviews to the network claiming Ms Corby had used drugs with her and sold her marijuana.

Ms Corby today denied the allegations in the witness box, telling the jury she had never cultivated or sold marijuana.

She also testified she had never taken cocaine, shabu (a type of methamphetamine), speed or ecstasy, nor possessed the latter three drugs.

Ms Corby told the court she had never smuggled drugs into any country or instructed anyone else to do so, and had "no knowledge'' of the 4.1kg of cannabis Indonesian authorities found in her sister's luggage in 2004.

"My sister's innocent,'' Ms Corby declared.

Ms Corby denied interfering in her sister's trial, saying she had done "everything I can to help her''.

"Have you lied to the public about your involvement with drugs or your family's (involvement)?'' asked her lawyer Stuart Littlemore QC.

"No, never,'' Ms Corby replied.

The clothing designer fought back tears as she spoke of her sister's confinement, telling the jury she visited her every day in her Bali jail to take her food and clean clothes.

When Schapelle was sick or needed legal counsel, Ms Corby said she would arrange for doctors and lawyers, "whatever has to be done''.

"She needs us there for her sanity,'' Ms Corby wept.

Ms Corby said her brother, Michael, was currently in Bali caring for Schapelle in her absence, visiting her twice a day.

Mr Littlemore read an email from Ms Corby to Seven, written before it screened the programs in question, in which she begged them to thoroughly investigate Ms Power's claims before putting them to air.

In the email, which was circulated to Seven news director Peter Meakin and other managers, Ms Corby said Ms Power was "mentally unstable'' and would "say anything for money, she loves the limelight''.

Ms Corby told Seven she believed Ms Power was being used in a "smear campaign'' hatched by Gold Coast businessman Ron Bakir and her sister's former lawyer Robin Tampoe.

Both men were painted in a bad light in Schapelle's biography and Ms Corby said she believed they were "putting Jodie up to speak on their behalf''.

"We believe that they are retaliating through the media with the help of Jodie, who they know was close to our family,'' Ms Corby wrote.

"This is a a carefully thought out and manipulative strategy.''

"I know it will be good ratings, but this is our life.

"Please give our family a fair go.''

Ms Corby said she believed any negative press, particularly anything linking her sister to drugs, could adversely affect the outcome of Schapelle Corby's final appeal, which was at that time before the Indonesian courts.

The Gold Coast woman, who has three children with her Balinese husband, said she received only a polite response from Seven's legal counsel assuring her Today Tonight "will be in touch with you if the need arises''.

The next she heard of the matter was when it was broadcast on February 13, she said.

Her evidence continues before Justice Carolyn Simpson.


------------------------
Another article in the same vein:

HLJ Random Quote of the Week

The following occurs between 3pm and 4pm on the day of my travels to St. Louis:

Me: Schapelle's book is finally being published in the US! In Australia, it was called "My Story" but in the US it's being published under the title "No More Tomorrows."

Friend: Oh, well....I don't like that. *smile*

(This friend and I worked together in a Central American village called More Tomorrow. The thought of it being no more was quite sad. :D)

Schapelle Corby Picture of the Week - 11.5.08



This picture of Schapelle was posted on HBO's site about the upcoming HBO premiere of 'Ganja Queen'. I post it here as an example of all I wish for the United States in relation to Schapelle's case.

Personally, I have told many Americans about this case. Many lack sufficient interest to become actively involved, but several ask consistently how things are going....and they ask with compassion. I have a group of people I email off and on about certain updates, though in more recent times, emails have been sparse, due to the lack of much of anything going on. Not to mention the issue of people who move away, or change email addys.....

Such updates seem to do little sometimes. I am never surprised, never NOT disgusted at how so many Americans just seem completely ambivalent about current affairs or situations outside of their tiny podunk town. Still, because niceties and general politeness demand it, I am calm. I explain what I can. I do so nicely. I just wish it stuck.

Schapelle's story is not on the news in quite the same way as, say, the War on Terror....though the level of disinterest seems to generally be the same. What a shame. In relation to Schapelle's case, it is up to supporters to spread the word. Hence blogs like this one and internet discussion sites like the Forum.

For Americans, it would help if there were some public exposure, and finally, in a small way, it has come. HBO's premiere of 'Ganja Queen' and the US/UK publication of 'No More Tomorrows' have arrived. In the US!

SPREAD THE WORD!!!

It is my hope that Americans are awakened to Schapelle's plight, and that many more hasten to her aid.

Schapelle Corby Visits the United States!

The documentary on Schapelle's case, called 'Ganja Queen', will air on HBO JUNE 30 as part of a series entitled HBO Documentary Films Series. I had previously posted that 'Ganja Queen' would air August 30, so I am grateful that information on the website was posted on the FreeSchapelle forum.

Below is a site listing the documentaries HBO will air in this special series:

http://www.hbo.com/docs/docuseries/swf/summer2008/index.html

This is a site that explains Janine Hoskings' film in (slightly) more detail:

http://www.hbo.com/docs/docuseries/ganjaqueen/index.html

Next, and last, a review from Variety.com on 'Ganja Queen'. I landed on this site from an IMDb link on 'Ganja Queen':

http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117932495.html?categoryid=31&cs=1&p=0 - it is interesting that at the end of the article, the reviewer notes, "one never really sees where the Corby story is going or where it will end up." Well, we are all in the middle of this. Though the comment is a critique of the film, the comment gets it right in this: Schapelle Corby's case is ongoing, and the fight is far from over. Again, we're all in the middle of this.

The Defamation Trial: My Wishes

I find the defamation trial pressed upon Channel 7 by Mercedes Corby to be an interesting development in Schapelle Corby's case.

Occurring as media reports (many of which originated by questionable means from Channel 7) steadily seem to be turning against Schapelle, this trial attacks some of this negative news at its source: the network itself. Current testimony in the trial centers around Jodie Power, a former best friend of Mercedes who conducted an interview on Ch7 (after failing a lie detector test once) in which she revealed that she had seen Mercedes smoke marijuana, and that she had been personally asked to transport a suspicious package from their house. Mercedes countered the claims. Later, a Channel 7 employee impersonated an Australian federal official and contacted Mercedes saying that he had documents which could free Schapelle. Mercedes met with the man, but upon stepping out of the van with her newborn son, she was greeted by four media cameras, the fake fed, and Jodie Power herself. The meeting had been a farce aimed at arranging a confrontation between Mercedes and Jodie.

Lies are a key faction in this defamation trial. Channel 7 gave Jodie a lie detector test, and Jodie failed it. Upon passing it at a second go-around, they allowed her to air her allegations on Australian national television. The Channel's employees lied to create a dramatic meeting between two enemies. Jodie's ex-husband testified against Jodie, accusing her of crazed dillusions. Certainly, in all this--if not solely because Mercedes' last name is Corby--the question of whether Schapelle lied about the marijuana in her bags has forced itself into viewers' minds.

There is a saying out there somewhere that the truth makes us free. Difficult though truth is sometimes, there is somewhat of a liberating factor accompanied by it. Finally, something is solid. Truth may be freely dealt with excepting doubt. When accusations and attacks are made, as they are in this defamation trial, truth may seem to be slipping farther and farther away. The players involved may become more and more desparate to either cover up the truth or find it and make it known at all costs, so that justice is had.

There is always the risk that should Mercedes' story be accepted as truth by the judge (and I believe Mercedes' story), many will not accept that version. Such is the case when so many accusations are thrown about prior to the truth's publication. A legal verdict backing a story, though, is a damning point against doubters. Therefore, I hope that Mercedes prevails, and that Channel 7 is condemned for the false stories perpetuated against Mercedes.

In reading articles proceeding from this trial, such as the one in the HLJ post below, it is interesting to note that bit by bit, certain factors of Mercedes' and Schapelle's stories are emerging. This time, they emerge as debated issues, not merely as issues pre-decided by certain reporters or certain interviewees.

Some of the issues we see are 1) blows to Jodie's credibility, 2) accusations of Jodie's drug use, 3) Mercedes' opportunity to reaffirm Schapelle's innocence, and 4) the subsequent of Mercedes' testimonies. Others will no doubt arise and others have probably been missed by this human observer.

It is my hope that as these issues emerge, viewers will be steadily exposed to the holes in certain anti-Schapelle arguments. Even if a person does not believe in her innocence or support her firmly, there are many holes in existence. I also hope that observers of the trial will begin to question the issues surrounding Schapelle's story and investigate it further.

I hope the truth DOES COME OUT!

Jodie Power Was Delusional: Ex-Husband

Friday May 16, 12:39 PM

Jodie Power was delusional: husband

The estranged husband of Jodie Power has told a jury in a defamation case he believed her marijuana smoking was "ruining" her mind and making her delusional during their relationship.

Michael Ripley was called to give evidence on Friday in the NSW Supreme Court by the legal team for Mercedes Corby, who is suing Seven Network Ltd.

Ms Corby, the sister of convicted Bali drug smuggler Schapelle Corby, says she was defamed in interviews with her former best friend, Ms Power, which were broadcast in February last year.

She says she was falsely portrayed as a drug dealer and smuggler. Neither Ms Power nor Ms Corby - who have been at the trial every day since it started three weeks ago - were present in court for Mr Ripley's evidence.

Mr Ripley said he first met Ms Power in late 2001 and they split up in May 2006.

During their five years together Ms Power had smoked marijuana very often, he said.He had told her she needed to stop, he told the court, because "she was becoming delusional" and "it was ruining Jodie's mind".

"She used to think that women were trying to contact me," he said, later describing it as "crazy stuff".

"Jodie's said to me that I have a line underneath the house that I used to contact women," he said. "She said there were messages coming over the TV from lovers."

Mr Ripley described Mercedes Corby as an honest, kind and caring person.

He said on Ms Power's return from Bali in July 2005, she had told him "she wanted to hurt Mercedes".

Schapelle Corby is serving 20 years in a Bali prison after being convicted of smuggling 4.1kg of cannabis into Indonesia inside a bodyboard bag in 2004.

The defamation hearing is continuing before Justice Carolyn Simpson.

http://au.news.yahoo.com/080516/2/16vpx.html

Jodie Power and Mercedes Corby in Court

Following interesting developments in Mercedes Corby's defamation trial against Channel 7, this photo of three important players has emerged. From left to right are Jodie, Michael Ripley (Powers' ex-husband), and Mercedes.


I hate to make judgements, but if Mr. Ripley's testimony as to Jodie's frequent drug use is true, that seems to be substantiated by these photos, wherein Jodie appears haggard and disshevelled. Considering that she and Mercedes are the same age, Jodie seems far more advanced in years.
I simply forward these observations. I hesitated to even post them, but images can be powerful. And sometimes, photos are most all anyone has to go by in making important determinations.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The US Finally Is Exposed to Schapelle Corby's Case

The United States finally has a way by which to learn more about Schapelle's case! Previously, mentions of Schapelle Corby occured nearly exclusively on May 29, 2005, on her original conviction date, and that done only in reference to the outrage it caused in Australia--not to the story of Schapelle herself.

The introduction of Schapelle Corby to America is occuring in two principal ways:

1 - A US/UK release of Schapelle's book "My Story," written with Kathryn Bonella. In this new release, the book is entitled "No More Tomorrows." The cover art of the book consists of the same picture as present on My Story, but shows Schapelle's face only from the eyes up. I have not been made aware of any further adjustments to content. For instance, I understand that in the AU original release, My Story consisted of childhood photos, etc. I shall post on this blog when I learn of any (but hopefully no) alterations.

US/UK readers may learn about the book through Amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/No-More-Tomorrows-Schapelle-Corby/dp/1845963865 - the US Amazon site. The book is not yet available for sale on the Amazon site, but US buyers interested may sign up to recieve email updates when No More Tomorrows becomes available.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/No-More-Tomorrows-Compelling-Innocent/dp/1845963865/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1209488640&sr=8-1 - the UK site. This site DOES have No More Tomorrows available for sale, at 9.99 pounds. (apologies, my American computer does not have the pound sign for British money). This price is encouraging, especially since copies of the AU version available on Amazon run at almost $50.

2 - A documentary called Ganja Queen tells Schapelle's story from a supporter's standpoint. In general, the film holds to Schapelle's innocence. The title is taken from a Bahasa Indonesia nickname Schapelle disingenuously earned because of the large quantity of drugs she supposedly imported: ratu ganja, or in English, Ganja Queen. This film, created by Australian producer Janine Hosking and her partner Steve Hopes (interesting name for a film of this sort), is set to screen in the US! As part of a series of documentaries to be aired on the HBO channel, it is estimated that Ganja Queen will air on August 18.

Australia's The Daily Telegraph ran an informative article announcing the release:

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,23550087-5013605,00.html

Please make every effort to purchase this book and watch this documentary. These are truly rare opportunities for American audiences to learn about Schapelle's plight.

I will post more as I learn more.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Schapelle Corby Picture of the Week - 23.3.08


The ACA (A Current Affair) show's wonderful proof that Schapelle and Mercedes together enjoyed a nice meal in a Bali restaurant!

As Brad on the FreeSchapelle Forum said:

LOL .... Definitely Mercedes and Schapelle! Can't you tell?

'Mercedes' is eating a large dish (with meat?). Does anyone know if she is vegetarian? 'Schapelle' is on a liquid diet (knife and fork unused). Restaurant food is unappealing when you can look forward to prison food everyday (even if she cooks it herself) Another give away sign is the prison guard in a red t-shirt pretending to keep an eye on Schapelle. Would be interesting to see if Schapelle had her running shoes on. We know from 'My Story' she's a fast runner.

Next time you see a skinny, long-haired brunette wearing sunnies at night, you can bet your last dollar it will be Schapelle.
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For more on ACA's wonderful Schapelle expose's, check out their website's articles and videos on Schapelle Corby - or visit the FreeSchapelle Forum link on my sidebar. Wondeful reading, all of it.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Kay Danes/Foreign Prisoner Support Service Release

Attention: Media Watch
Re: ACA [Ch9] victimisation of Schapelle Corby

As you know, Schapelle Corby is a prisoner in Kerobokan Prison. Recently I tuned into the Australian television ‘A Current Affairs Program’ on Monday evening 3 March 2008. I could not believe that they had compiled an elaborate story to mislead the Australian public. Airing photo's of tourists who resembled Schapelle and her sister Mercedes and alluding that they were in fact, Schapelle and her sister, enjoying a night on the town - unsupervised by prison police.

It was devastating the way ACA compiled the story but more disturbing was the fact that they refused to show the said photographs to Schapelle's distraught mother unless she agreed to view the photo's on air. Then they had the audacity to ask her how she could be so convinced that the photo's were not actual photo's of her daughters. Rosleigh Corby has just lost her former husband to cancer and at the time the photo's were taken, his funeral was underway and Mercedes had flown back to Australia to attend.

I am of the understanding that the girls who took these photographs were attempting to sell them to the Australian media, although I personally cannot verify that. In any case, I strongly believe that Schapelle’s current legal case will suffer as a result of the ACA program and that is more than just unfortunate, it is in my opinion, highly concerning.

Foreign Prisoner Support Service is lodging a formal complaint to the Australian Attorney General's Office in relation to the continued victimisation of Australian detainee Schapelle Corby.

Prisoners are not, and should not, be put at risk simply to increase ratings or to sell more newspapers. The story was nothing more than sensational rubbish based on hearsay from people who don’t even know Schapelle Corby, have never met her or her family!

I am of the opinion that Schapelle Corby’s civil rights are being blatantly violated by Australian media, in particular, A Current Affair [Ch9] in this instance.

Journalists in Australia need to be mindful that inaccurate reporting such as we have seen in this latest media fiasco can have detrimental affects on Australians detained overseas. In fact, given that Indonesia does monitor our media to a greater extent, this could undermine and negatively impact on the current negotiations of the Prisoner Transfer Agreement. The bilateral relationship between Australia and Indonesia is one that requires a certain level of respect and sensitivity. Clearly the ACA report does not provide support to either.

Schapelle Corby is currently serving a twenty year sentence. She is waiting on a decision from the Indonesian court pending her application for a judicial review. What right does Channel nine or any other media outlet have to report falsely, inaccurately, and in a way that has the potential to negatively impact on any prisoner's current judicial proceedings and/or appeals?

Australian media reports that falsely claim that she is frequently let out of Kerobokan prison and has an easy time in the jail, are completely false but more importantly, they are reckless and insensitive. This type of journalism only undermines her right to be treated fairly and serves to insult the Indonesian authorities and the way in which they manage prisoners and the security of their prisons.

Kerobokan prison is no holiday camp or idyllic paradise, contrary to some media reports. I should know because I’ve been there as a visitor to Australians and foreigners detained there. It’s a disgusting place. Schapelle Corby is doing HARD TIME and is NOT given any special considerations over any other prisoners. She does not leave the prison on trips to the beach or to restaurants or nightclubs. These allegations are completely false and can be verified with Indonesian authorities as false.

These people who went on ACA and reported that they saw Schapelle and Mercedes at some restaurant in Bali are people who have never met the Corby’s. When I watched the program I saw within seconds that it was not Schapelle or Mercedes. At no time did the journalists at ACA approach any of us, who they know could easily verify the photo's, and one has to question why that is? This type of smear campaigning by A Current Affair is unwarranted and is disgusting! I have not seen anything so appalling in my life. I personally witnessed the way ACA begged me and the Corby family to let them into Schapelle’s dilemma at the onset of her trial and their promises to help tell the Australian public what we all knew, that Schapelle wasn’t getting a fair go. Now they turn on her … for what reason? For a story? Is that all that poor girl means to those journalists at Ch9?

The media’s victimisation of Schapelle Corby is not something that I have ever seen before in the history of this country, or elsewhere throughout the world where we [FPSS] are dealing with foreign media on a daily basis.

I am appealing to the Australian public to disregard ACA’s report on Monday evening. I am also appealing to the Australian Civil Libertarians to look into this appalling situation and voice their outrage to the Australian government, if they are to support the proper and fair treatment of Australians detained overseas.

So called ‘experts’ called upon by media to make comments about foreign prisoners being able to buy their way out of Kerobokan prison on day release trips are careless and untrue. Foreigners are not able to ‘bribe’ guards to leave Kerobokan. This is absolute rubbish and Mr. Paul Wilson, a leading Australian criminologist hasn’t a clue what he’s talking about if he truly thinks that is the case! He claims he was taken out of context by the ACA reporter and certainly his statements, as aired, will have a negative effect in Bali. Where is the accountability of journalists searching for a comment to actually make sure that the so-called expert knows what they are talking about in the first place.

The rights of prisoners should be observed and upheld. Schapelle Corby continues to claim innocence and regardless of public opinion, she should be given every right to appeal her case without the continued harassment and hindrance of Australian media and their so-called experts!

The Corby family are constantly dragged into the limelight and portrayed by the media as wacky as the Osbornes - when all they want to do is find a way to bring Schapelle home after such a dreadful ordeal.

I hope ACA’s sensational and inaccurate report does not offend the Indonesian authorities or jeopardise Schapelle’s already precarious situation! Why don’t they do some serious investigative journalism and find out why Schapelle Corby continues to claim innocence?

I would like to see media watch investigate this matter further and take ACA to task. They are quite dangerous in my opinion because the Australian public are lead to make judgements based on falsehoods that are put out there by ACA journalists. Whatever happen to the days when journalists had to check the facts, recheck and then report? Now they appear to be just making things up and not caring who they hurt.

As an International Human rights advocate for prisoners all over the world, I am appalled by the standards or lack thereof in our media industry. There is seemingly very little accountability. Families who are already enduring great hardships both financially, emotionally and physically are plunged even further into a nightmare when they are unable to defend their very public humiliations brought about by certain members of the media.

I implore you on behalf of Australian familes with loved ones detained overseas to do whatever you can to restore ethics, professionalism and accountability in the media sector which is so obviously lacking.

regards,

Kay Danes
Foreign Prisoner Support Service

http://www.foreignprisoners.com/
FPSS DVD [with sound]: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lT-tkX0F7GA
Author Website: http://www.kaydanes.com/

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Schapelle Corby May Come Home!

Corby may come home

SCHAPELLE Corby's chances of returning to Australia to serve out the rest of her 20-year sentence have been boosted following confidential negotiations.

Home Affairs minister Bob Debus has held high-level talks in Jakarta aimed at finalising a prisoner transfer treaty with Indonesia that could bring Corby home within a year.

Mr Debus met with Indonesia's Attorney-General and Foreign Minister a week ago to hammer out details of the proposed treaty, which has languished over the past 18 months after negotiations stalled on several crucial details.

A signed treaty would allow Corby and at least three members of the Bali Nine to serve out the remainder of their sentences in Australian jails, close to family and in more comfortable conditions than those in Bali's Kerobokan prison.

The government is committed to securing a workable and effective prisoner transfer agreement with Indonesia, Mr Debus said. "I raised the matter at the highest levels with the Attorney-General and the Foreign Minister – the talks were constructive and our two countries are making progress towards resolving some of the ongoing concerns," Mr Debus said.

Corby, arrested in 2004 at Bali's Denpasar airport after 4.2kg of marijuana was found in her body board bag, was jailed for 20 years but has maintained her innocence.

She was denied an expected reduction in her sentence at Christmas because she had been found in possession of a mobile phone several months earlier. Six weeks ago her father died in Queensland after a long battle with cancer.

In the past some members of her family have suggested she would prefer to remain in Kerobokan prison rather than return to Australia. But friends have since dismissed these claims, saying Schapelle would welcome any chance to be close to her Gold Coast family, possibly in a women's correctional centre near Brisbane.

Corby has described Kerobokan prison as a disgusting slum with no running water or power. A plan last year to move her to another jail in Java hundreds of kilometres away was shelved when authorities later declared that conditions at Kerobokan had improved.

It is believed Mr Debus is not the first cabinet minister to raise the possibility of signing off on a prisoner transfer deal since the government's election victory last November.

A succession of Government figures have visited Jakarta since Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has made it clear he wanted relations between Australia and Indonesia to improve during his three-year term. A prisoner transfer treaty is seen as a crucial plank in the new relationship. But several sticking points remain with the Indonesian government remain, including how to marry the Australian system of applying parole conditions with the Indonesia practice of handing out remissions for good behaviour.

While the new treaty is expected to be applied retrospectively, it will not provide any comfort for members of the Bali Nine heroin ring on death row. Six of the nine face death by firing squad, including ringleaders Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, along with drug mule Scott Rush.

Mr Rudd told Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono shortly after the election that he would make a personal appeal for clemency for the six Australians on death row if their subsequent legal appeals fail.Indonesia has asserted that death row prisoners be excluded from any prisoner transfer treaty because Australia does not practice capital punishment.

The treaty could send three others, including convicted drug mule Renae Lawrence – the only female member of the Bali Nine – to Australia to complete their 20-year sentences.

Australia already has prisoner transfer treaties in place with Thailand, Vietnam and China.

The new treaty with Indonesia was first raised several years ago and former Attorney General Philip Ruddock had hoped to have it signed in 2006.

But negotiations stalled soon after following a deterioration in the relationship between the two countries. By the middle of last year an impasse had been reached that made it seem unlikely the deal would ever be finalised.

http://www.news.com.au/adelaidenow/stor ... 10,00.html