Drug smuggling British gran waiting for firing squad on death row has final chilling wish

A British grandmother living on death row can do nothing but knit and wait to be executed as she is locked up in a Bali prison for drug-smuggling.

Lindsay Sandiford, 65, has been in Kerobokan Prison, in Indonesia, for nearly ten years after she was arrested in January 2013 for trying to smuggle £1.6 million worth of cocaine into the country.

In Indonesia, the punishment for this type of crime is terrifying – death by firing squad.

Inmates can choose to sit or stand before armed soldiers open fire, aiming for the heart, The Mirror reports.

If a prisoner manages to survive the ordeal, the commander then shoots them in the head.

The 65-year-old gran is still waiting for her execution date, as Indonesia carries them out infrequently.

Prisoners can be left waiting on death row for more than 10 years.

Sandiford, who had separated from her husband, made the decision to move to India in 2012.

She was arrested as she arrived in Bali from Bangkok on May 19, 2012 after cocaine was found in her luggage.

Lindsay Sandiford will face an Indonesian firing squad

The former legal secretary originally insisted she had been forced to carry the Class A drugs by a criminal gang who had threatened to hurt her family if she refused.

However, she then changed her story when she was told she would receive the death penalty if convicted of drug trafficking.

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She told officers she had been asked to carry the drugs by Julian Ponder, a British antiques dealer.

Sandiford agreed to take part in a police sting to catch Ponder, but she was still later charged with drug trafficking.

She was sentenced to death on January 22, 2013.

Lindsay Sandiford speaks with her sister Hillary Parsons at holding cell
Lindsay Sandiford speaks with her sister Hillary Parsons at holding cell

During her time in prison, Sandiford knits various items which she sells to try and raise money for her legal fees.

Whilst behind bars, she befriended killer Heather Mack.

Mack served 10 years for the murder of her mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack, who was then stuffed into a suitcase by her boyfriend.

Mack has revealed that Sandiford was becoming increasingly reclusive whilst in prison.

She became difficult to speak to and would often snap for no reason.

She said: “She spends all day pretty much alone in her cell and doesn’t mix so much with the other prisoners.”

The killer also revealed Sandiford has just one final wish.

She said: “She has said she wants to die.”

Indeed, Sandiford herself said: “It won’t be a hard thing for me to face anymore.

“It’s not particularly a death I would choose but then again I wouldn’t choose dying in agony from cancer either.”

She has also said she feels blessed to have been able to watch her two sons grow up and meet her grandchildren.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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