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On trial

59 Comments

Kazuya Yokoyama from Japan talks to his Indonesian lawyer before his first hearing at a court in Bali on Monday. Yokoyama was arrested last December for alleged possession of 7.4 grams of marijuana. He faces a maximum sentence of 18 years in prison.

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59 Comments
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Dude is lucky he isn't facing the death penalty.

15 ( +14 / -0 )

He should be happy with 18 years. Dude should have remembered the one rule of pot smokers - DON'T DO IT IN ASIA.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I don't understand it !!!! Why when people are on vacation or studying abroad they have to " toke up ? ?" I've never seen so many foreign drug addicts in japan. When I first came here - " Do you have weed ? Do you have- ? " Ohhh, yeahh I want to go to jail. " Hey, let's score together dude !!! "

Quote from South Park- " Drugs, Drugs are bad !!! "

Drugs can kill and this sucker will die by hanging or beheading. Depending the mood of the executioner.

-17 ( +3 / -17 )

wow.. pretty harsh punishment for such a tiny amount of the drug, but the law is the law

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I am against the use of all kinds of drugs including marijuana but 18 years in jail for the possession of 7.4 grams seems too harsh... I understand it's their law though and bringing drugs in a country such as Indonesia is actually a very stupid thing to do..

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Possession of half an ounce of weed has pretty stiff penalties in many countries, not just in Indo. That much hooter can land you in pretty serious trouble in Japan too. However, anybody with half a brain knows to stay right away from drugs in Indonesia. Does the name, Shapelle Corby ring any bells fool?

4 ( +3 / -0 )

Big price to pay for a half hour buzz.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@Whiskeysour - why are you ranting about foreign drug addicts in Japan? Who said this guy is an addict? He is facing a a maximum sentence of 18 yrs, not the death penalty. The punishment does not fit the crime at all. He possessed dried leaves of a plant, the worst it does is give you the munchies, a danger to society? In my opinion it shouldn't be illegal, especially when compared to the impact of alcohol on society. BUT - he's in a foreign country and the law is the law. Sayonara.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

As dumb as this guy was (assuming he did it), the country is even dumber for permitting such incredibly brutal sentences for such an offense. There ought to be some semblance of balance, of fairness in a sentence. How does the saying go? "Let the punishment fit the crime"? We are talking about pot, for personal use nonetheless. To put this in perspective, in California, first time possession of less than an ounce of weed (28 grams, or 4 times more than this guy had) is punishable by a MAXIMUM penalty of a $100 fine, plus court costs. No jail time. Maybe that is too lenient. But 18 years in prison is just barbaric. Indonesia has its head up its ***.

13 ( +15 / -3 )

That much hooter can land you in pretty serious trouble in Japan too.

This depends totally upon the who, and how they got it. I've know people who got slaps on the wrist for this amount and more.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Possession of half an ounce of weed has pretty stiff penalties in many countries, not just in Indo

Maaate, an ounce is about 28 grams, how is 7.5 half of 28? Wow screwy maths duude!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

How ridiculous...

Extreme anti-marijuana and anti-drugs mentality has been foisted on the world by Americans and it is doing terrible damage...

It's time to legalize drugs.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

pretty harsh punishment for such a tiny amount of the drug

It says that 18 years is the maximum sentence is he will face. It has not been decided yet what the actual sentence will be. It could be less. It won't be more.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If you are ever arrested for dope in a 3rd world country DO NOT immediately call your Embassy. Two reasons: 1) They can't really do anything to help. 2) When you contact your Embassy your predicament becomes OFFICIAL and the option of bribing your way out becomes much more difficult for all parties concerned.

Offer money, apologize, offer money, apologize. Hope for the best.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I think he's thirsty.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

That sucks... I feel sorry for this guy. Instead he should have booked a flight to Mexico where 7.4 grams of weed is no problem to carry as personal stuff. In fact that is law there.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Might as well call it a life sentence, there is no possibility he will leave prison alive.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He was unlucky. Pot is available to buy in Bali if you want it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Australian Bali 9, Schappelle Corby from Australia etc were busted for drugs in Indonesia also, 2 got the death sentence the rest are life long sentences, I doubt Indonesia will be easy on him.. even if he did this in Japan, he would also be serving a lengthy sentence.. Any Asian, or west Asian country have very strict drug offense laws..

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

& i'm sure the marijuana was purchased right in bali. not like he smuggled it in. it's much easier to purchase there then in japan .

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I hate drugs and don't understand why anyone would take these things but my understanding is that marijuana is very mild. I think 18 years in jail for the possession of 7.4 grams seems an insane obsessive law they have. To me it would have made more sense to force him do some local community work and send him back to Japan when he is finished it and ban him from Indonesia. Some of you mentioned legalising marijuana, I think you are probably right, but can't see that happenning in Indonesia.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Offer money, apologize, offer money, apologize. Hope for the best.

True, in incidents involving the cops asking for "coffee money / cigarette money" when they want to shake you down for some cash (usually about some BS about not having your passport on hand), but that old-school tactic won't work for drug offenses - even more so for foreigners. The Indonesians don't make any qualms about their stance on drugs - especially when they have notices posted at the airports upon your arrival reading, death to drug traffickers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Don't do the crime if you can't do the time. Anyone who smokes in Bali is gambling. While they look the other way for locals, they are clamping down on tourists - and lord knows it has been in the news enough for the past few years that anyone going there should be aware of it. No sympathy. If he wanted to smoke and surf, he should've gone to Canada.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

People set you up in Bali to get reduced sentences for themselves.

Will cost Indonesia a lot more money to incarcerate him, then to put him on a plane and send him back to Japan.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

He must be famous in Japan, why look at the BIG pic !!!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

18 years is a bit too harsh

18 years is indeed too harsh... too harsh for the community, the society, the tax payers ! DEATH PENALTY FOR ALL ILLEGAL DRUG USERS!

-12 ( +3 / -15 )

According to Wikipedia - Maximum sentence of 4 years in prison -btw.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Extremely harsh punishment... On the bright side, by the time he gets out - he will be fluent in Balinese.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Only an idiot would buy or use drugs in Asia.

He should thank god they aren't imposing the death penalty.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This dope fiend should be given the death penalty. It'd teach others not to do drugs.

RR

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

i come from a liberal holland, but i know it ends at the border, check the drug laws before you buy shit!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@megosaa...DEATH PENALTY FOR ALL ILLEGAL DRUG USERS! Wow that is very strong words Mr megosaa. Think about what you are saying...Would you really like to see a young guy like that put to death for having a small amount of weak drugs???? He is not a denger to the public You are right about tax payers money keeping him locked up, so get him to do some charity work in Indonesia and send him home, is that better idea?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

To make it clear, I dislike all drugs, even mild ones like marijuana for recreational use. However in defense of this Japanese guy, I would like to point out that a lot of commentators have missed the point by condemning Kazuya Yokoyama by calling him an "idiot" who "should thank god they aren't imposing the death penalty".

Unfortunately for this Japanese guy, he should have watched Midnight Express and realize that Islamic countries are very intolerant and harsh when it comes to condemning people for breaking the law. Laws set-out in the first place to enforce a religious morality that takes no prisoners. (btw Christianity fares no better in that regard) .

The irony is, Bali is the only Indonesian island that is mostly Hindu (92+%) as far as religion goes. It was found to be "an enchanted land of aesthetes at peace with themselves and nature" by anthropologists Margaret Mead in the 1930s. Too bad the law of this island is dictated NOT by "aesthetes at peace with themselves and nature" but by fearful and controlling religious fundamentalists.

This poor Japanese guy will not just become a victim of his stupidity, but of "insane" man made laws that have no frontier and no regard for true justice. Hopefully his lawyer can defend him by singling out Bali as an island of aesthetes, where originally, intellectuals and artists came and gathered to flee the oppressing and thus intellectually and artistically sterile landscape that the rest of Indonesia had become.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@megosaa Forget my last comment you are obviously winding us up to get a response, right...!!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Personally I can't understand the harsh attitude a lot of nations have towards pot, or why they would consider it the same as cocaine or heroine while allowing booze to flow freely and encourage drinking parties in a lot of cases, but hey. The guy was nuts to do what he did in Indonesia.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

18 years for 7.5 grams is way too harsh a punishment, and the punishment does not fit the crime. Many young tourists visiting Bali smoke cannabis, so this will drive them away to find other places. I guess he didn't pay bribe money to the cops?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I feel for the guy a little bit - it was a small amount of dope - but doing ANY type of drugs in Indonesia is a bad idea - especially if you do not pay off the crooked Indonesian policemen with enough $US. . I'm sure he has made friends by now with the dozen or so Aussies doing serious time in the same prison for drug offences. Sadly, it looks as though he is on something a bit stronger than dope in there - likely "horse" judging by how thin he looks. You can buy anything you want in that joint - except freedom.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

combinibento

As dumb as this guy was (assuming he did it), the country is even dumber for permitting such incredibly brutal sentences for such an offense. There ought to be some semblance of balance, of fairness in a sentence. How does the saying go? "Let the punishment fit the crime"?

You got one part of this post right and that was the bit where you said this guy was dumb. The laws regarding drugs in Asian countries is very well known, infact you would have to be blind and deaf and have lived in a cave for you whole life not to know the seriousness of drug possession in these countries. He is a druggie he took the risk, he got caught, now he does the time. Who are you to tell another country their laws are to strict, its their country their laws you go there you respect them or you end up like this guy your choice. But to critisise them because you dont agree with them stiff.

We are talking about pot, for personal use nonetheless. To put this in perspective, in California, first time possession of less than an ounce of weed (28 grams, or 4 times more than this guy had) is punishable by a MAXIMUM penalty of a $100 fine, plus court costs. No jail time. Maybe that is too lenient. But 18 years in prison is just barbaric. Indonesia has its head up its ***.

Well thats the difference isnt it, maybe its why California for example is such a lovely place with all the druggies running around. So Indonesia has its head up its **** for having tough drug laws? No maybe the US does for not having them. Oh and do you know the sentence in other countries for drug possession? Japan (0.1 of a gram) up to 5 years, Hong Kong 7 years, Norway (over 15 grams) 6 months to 21 years. And thats just some examples so the moral of the story, if you enjoy your drugs go to the US or Europe not Asia for you holidays.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Though I don't mind that dirty little trafficker getting just punishment (if only to wipe that smirk off his face), we have to consider the financial impact of the crime vs. the financial impact of the punishment.

Let's assume a food budget of 30,000 rupiah per day...that should easily cover three meals. In one week, that will amount to 210,000 rupiah. After a year, the taxpayers have contributed 10,920,000 rupiah in food expenses to keep the man alive, but punished...which to me seems fair enough - I wouldn't mind giving my share of that to keep a drug dealer behind bars for a year. However, after 18 years, taxpayers are short of 196,560,000 rupiah. This is only to cover food and doesn't include security, healthcare, maintenance for the prison etc. etc.

Now let's consider that a 3BR house with 375 square meters floor space on a 500 square meter lot in Yogyakarta goes for about 2.5 million rupiah - imagine the vast amounts of money that went down the drain to keep this guy in prison...was it worth it? Who got the worst part of the punishment? Him or the taxpayers?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

mastertigurius

Though I don't mind that dirty little trafficker getting just punishment (if only to wipe that smirk off his face), we have to consider the financial impact of the crime vs. the financial impact of the punishment.

I understand what you are saying, however you also need to view the costs of having lax drug laws. The increase in crime and medical treatment. If this sort of punishment deters 1 person from using drugs then how much is saved on crimes they would commit in order to feed their habit, police resources, trauma to the victims of crime, medical treatment for the user etc for example look at the countries have lax laws. Maybe one way around this is that if the person is a foreign national then the persons home country is billed for the imprisonment (now didnt Japan recently suggest that?).

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

This guy is a fool! Let him rot there in Indonesia, Japan does not need these drug addicts.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Japan does not need these drug addicts

Smoking marijuana or cannabis don't make you a drug addict, anymore than drinking beer makes you a alcoholic. Interesting that both marijuana and hops are in the same plant family.

Alcohol causes far more crime and deaths than marijuana or cannabis does. Smokers of marijuana or cannabis don't become violent which frequently happens with the over consumption of alcohol. Smokers don't usually beat down on their wives or friends.

How many stupid stories do we read when alcohol is involved?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

zichi, great post! I tend to feel that weed makes people more mellow.....and when your on it, you can solve any problems of the world.,,,uhhhhh....errrrr....not that I have ever tried it.....(wink, wink)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

http://danieldiaztecles.blogspot.com/The point is that if you do not have drug problems in any country for that matter. It is clearly exaggerated, but all who take drugs know what they are exposed. Drug 0. Healthy Living 10

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Pot heads don't follow the news do they?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've said it before here - you have too know the law of the country you go to and seriously consider whether getting high a few times stacks up against the likely consequences of getting caught. Even when I was younger and far more stupid I knew you didn't smoke dope in Indonesia. It simply isn't worth it. Go, enjoy the sights, smells, sounds, food and waves but don't touch the drugs. If smoking dope is that important to you, don't go. People say that the punushment is too harsh and doesn't fit the crime but in this case that is immaterial. That IS the punishment for the crime. Know that before you go and don't complain if you get caught.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

7.5 grams makes him a fool and drug addict and scumbag? Bit extreme, other posters. sure, broke the law but 18 years is a long time for a bit of weed. Especially as so many locals smoke it without being arrested.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I would rather have my kids stoned on cannabis than drunk on alcohol. According to the Q'uran, alcohol is banned but not cannabis.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

As for this poor guy-I lived in Bali and I only met a few people who didnt smoke marijuana. He has just been extremely unlucky and is a victim of crime. Govermental crime! If Bali imprisoned everybody who smoked weed in their country they wouldnt have a tourist industry anymore.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

if you visit Bali, you might consider visiting him. prisoners live on handouts. it is unfortunate that so many of the readers have written negative comments about such a harmless activity. I feel truly sorry for those who condemn this guy.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Pharmaceutical drugs are far more dangerous. Wait! they`re legal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"alleged possession of 7.4 grams of marijuana... maximum sentence of 18 years in prison"

Whoa! First, are they sure it isn't 7.3 grams, or 7.5 grams? LOL. Second, 18 years in prison for a dime bag of weed? LOL.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Indonesian taxpayers are going to pay for this guy's food, clothing, housing, medical care, etc. for 18 years for a dime bag of weed?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What's the punishment for selling 32 grams of weed in Indonesia? Death by slow torture?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

18 Years....I guess he will be drug free by the time he gets released

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Marijuana is not an addictive drug, but like all substances that we introduce to our bodies, there is the possibility of a certain level of dependence. Idiotic drug laws in Asia do nothing to serve society. Of course, if anyone in this country or in any other Asian country knew anything about science they would know that marijuana has been shown to increase brain cells http://www.nature.com/news/2005/051010/full/news051010-12.html

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The drug laws in Asia might not be in keeping with what people think they ought to be but, until the laws are changed they are still the laws. Breaking them has severe consequences. So why do it?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Tobacco can not only kill the smoker but also the people around the smoker. Alcohol kills drivers,pedestrians & the drinkers liver. Weed kills...bags of cookies & potato chips. I understand some people being against it but hoping anyone gets 18 years or loses his/her life is INHUMAN.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Now let's consider that a 3BR house with 375 square meters floor space on a 500 square meter lot in Yogyakarta goes for about 2.5 million rupiah - imagine the vast amounts of money that went down the drain to keep this guy in prison...was it worth it? Who got the worst part of the punishment? Him or the taxpayers?

Have you ever stopped and considered that maybe, just maybe that this is one of the reasons the penalty is usually death? Not just for the problems that drugs cause in society, but the expenses of housing prisoners convicted of drug crimes as well.

Sad but true, it's cheaper to kill him that keep him alive in prison.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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