Australian police defend arrests that led to executions

 Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran
Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran

Australian Federal Police (AFP) defended their role which led to the arrest of the two convicts who were ultimately executed.

Information shared by AFP with Indonesian police led to the arrest of Andrew Chan, 31, and Myuran Sukumaran, 33, in 2005.

They were executed at Besi prison in Nusa Kambangan Island on April 28.

Australian Federal Police Commissioner (AFP) Andrew Colvin defended the decision to inform the Indonesian authorities about the drug syndicate, saying the AFP did not have enough evidence to arrest the Australians before they left for Indonesia, ABC reported.

“At the time, we were working with a very incomplete picture. We didn’t know everybody involved, we didn’t know all the plans, or even what the illicit commodity was likely to be,” commissioner Colvin said.

“At this time, AFP consulted and engaged our Indonesian partners and asked for their assistance.”

Colvin said the case of Chan and Sukumaran served as a tragic reminder of the risks associated with Australians who travel overseas to participate in drug trafficking and other serious crimes.

Meanwhile, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop will hold talks with Australia’s ambassador to Indonesia, Paul Grigson, in Perth later in the day.

Following the executions, Grigson was withdrawn last week.

Bishop said the withdrawal of the ambassador registered Australia’s displeasure at what took place and would allow for consultations on the relationship with Indonesia.