Indonesian Convicted in People-Smuggling Tragedy

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) - Reports say an Indonesian military tribunal has sentenced a soldier to six years in jail for attempting to smuggle illegal migrants to Australia on board an overcrowded boat that sank last December, killing about 200 people.

A military court in the East Java town of Madium found Sgt. Ilmun Abdul Said guilty of arranging the trip. Only 49 people survived when the boat was hit by a powerful wave and broke apart.

The official Antara news agency reported that Said was also fined $52,000 and dismissed from the military for having "embarrassed Indonesia in the eyes of the world."

The trials of seven other people arrested in the case are still ongoing.

Indonesia has become a key transit point for migrants fleeing conflict-ridden countries on their way to Australia.

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