Saturday, November 26, 2005

Desperate Leslie lied for her freedom - The Age

Desperate Leslie lied for her freedom - National -

An Age investigation has revealed that hearsay statements of people to whom Michelle Leslie apparently confided suggest:
  • she had taken ecstasy on the night of her arrest (well, she was going to a dance party which was presumably going to be playing music that only made sense to the stoned)
  • Mia (in fact Siti Nameera Azman) had not put the pills in her bag, and had not disappeared
  • that Leslie's family and legal team offered and paid numerous bribes, including to the police who tested the pills
  • that she was not addicted to Ritalin.
Now I haven't made a study of the facts' detail, but it seems fair to say that according to gossip good enough for the front page of The Age, substantially no part of her case was true.

It occurred to me that bribing Indonesian officials in Indonesia was probably a crime under Australian law, but apparently not, since s. 70 of the Commonwealth Criminal Code only prohibits the bribery of foreign officials in business. If the conduct may be said to have occurred, or been procured in Australia, I daresay a crime would have been committed, and any Australian lawyer's knowing involvement while in Australia in the conduct would probably constitute misconduct of a kind which would make regulators think hard about striking the lawyer off. Of course I am thinking about rumours (which The Age suggests were put about by her campaign team) rather than her case actually put forward in court. It may be that all this flowed around the case, and that she more or less adopted a submissively apologetic silence in court.

It is interesting that The Age has suddenly discovered all this now that Leslie is home. If they knew of a campaign of bribing Indonesian officials, and kept quiet until the bribes had done their work and our girl was back home, they would be implicated in precisely what they're purporting to expose.


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