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Bali Nine drug smuggler dies in Indonesia

Posted by On 4:53 AM

Bali Nine drug smuggler dies in Indonesia

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One of the notorious Bali Nine drug smugglers has died after spending 13 years in an Indonesian prison.

The Indonesian Corrections Office has confirmed Vietnamese Australian Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen, 34, died in hospital in East Java.

Nguyen, one of the seven remaining jailed members of the drug smuggling ring, was serving a life sentence in an Indonesian prison.

According to reports, the 34-year-old from Brisbane died in recent weeks following a battle believed to be with terminal cancer.

Nguyen was sentenced to death in 2006 after being found guilty of attempting to smuggle eight kilograms of hero in through Bali a year earlier.

He had been arrested at the Melasti Hotel in the seedy tourist hot spot of Kuta in April 2005 alongside three other "drug mules" and Myuran Sukumaran - who would later be named a ringleader in the smuggling plot.

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Sukumaran and the Melasti Three, as Nguyen, Matthew Norman and Si Yi Chen came to be called during their trial, were caught with about 300 grams of heroin, Indonesian police alleged.

Bali Nine member Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen had died. (Photo: AAP).
Bali Nin e member Tan Duc Thanh Nguyen had died. (Photo: AAP).

The drugs were bound for Australia.

Nguyen and other mules narrowly escaped execution after their sentences were commuted to life in prison.

In messages from prison Nguyen reportedly expressed deep regret for the hurt he had caused his family adding "there's no code of honour among drug dealers".

He died from cancer in a Jakarta hospital, media reported on Tuesday.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed to nine.com.au that they were providing support to an Australian man who died in Indonesia from a "terminal illness".

Nguyen is the third member of the Bali Nine to die after Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran were executed by firing squad in 2015.

Renae Lawrence has been the only Bali Nine member to have her jail time cut after receiving a reduction on her 20-year sentence in 2017.

With AAP

© Nine Di gital Pty Ltd 2018

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