shiraphant: (Default)
[personal profile] shiraphant
Samantha Orobator was arrested last August in Laos and charged with drug trafficking; her family and friends say she has no history of any involvement with drugs. She's been in prison ever since and is now pregnant, most likely as a result of rape. She faces possible execution by firing squad, though Laos is currently saying they probably won't execute her because she's pregnant - this is before she's even been tried.


Please go and read the whole thing at Shakesville. As Liss says, the best thing we can do at the moment is make it clear that we're paying attention to what happens to her. From one of the comments over there:

Facebook has contact info and a petition:
Email Harriet Harman, Samantha's MP, and Gordon Brown:
Harriet Harman: harmanh@parliament.uk / Tel: 0207 219 4218
Gordon Brown: https://email.number10.gov.uk/Contact.aspx
Nag them! Let them know that you are worried about Samantha and demand something to be done about her situation. Invite your friends (facebook or otherwise!) to do the same. Her life is at stake.
UPDATE: You can sign a petition here: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/petition/369869096

Please read the comments at Shakesville as well, if you have time - there's useful information there too.

Date: 2009-05-06 03:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] myselftheliar.livejournal.com
What upsets me the most out of all of it is that she's 20 years old, alone in a foreign country, and the press there is demonizing her into some sort of drug overlord.

edit: Just to clarify-- I get that people involved with drugs fuck up, and I get that different countries have different justice systems, but this is just ridiculous
Edited Date: 2009-05-06 03:39 pm (UTC)

Date: 2009-05-06 03:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] redshira.livejournal.com
And a distressingly large number of comments on various online articles about it are blaming her! FFS. As Liss also says, I defy anyone to tell me that her being black has nothing to do with it.

Date: 2009-05-06 03:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] myselftheliar.livejournal.com
It makes me so so angry. I (almost thankfully) forget exactly where, but the thing I see most people ignoring is the discrepancies about her pregnancy, and some saying she intentionally got pregnant to avoid being killed. WHAT? WHAT?!?!? She's 20 years old alone in prison and her pregnancy is heavily suspected to be due to rape or coercion, and people are BLAMING HER or saying she's plotting!?

Date: 2009-05-06 03:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] redshira.livejournal.com
Oh, but didn't you know? It's always the woman's fault, especially if she's black.
My fuck. Even if she did do it out of some desperate attempt to avoid being killed, how the FUCK is anyone condemning her for that? NB I do not believe for a minute that she did. I am pretty sure she was not given a choice in the conception of this pregnancy. I just don't fucking understand how anyone can think of a young woman alone in prison - probably for something she didn't do - in a foreign country, forcibly impregnated, likely to be killed, and not be horrified by what she's enduring. I don't get how hearing of her situation can engender the kind of responses I'm seeing from people, but somehow it does, and it infuriates and frustrates me beyond measure.
(deleted comment)

Date: 2009-05-06 03:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] redshira.livejournal.com
Please, please do, and thank you.
(deleted comment)

Date: 2009-05-06 04:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] redshira.livejournal.com
I don't have a telly and am not a fan of the BBC so I hadn't heard about it until I read it on Shakesville, which is thankfully pretty good about posting stuff like this. I just...there are people blaming her for this, and I can only begin to imagine what a state she's in. I wish there were something concrete we could do to help. She's only 20, as well.

Date: 2009-05-06 04:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] evilref.livejournal.com
I've been watching this one on the news over here. Because her mother is currently at Trinity College Dublin, it's been finding its way onto the media here.
As I understand it from several news sources, there is a law over there saying that pregnant women can't be executed. But the jail conditions sound truly medieval and the trial doesn't sound like it will be any better.
http://www.rte.ie/news/2009/0504/orobators.html
http://www.thepost.ie/breakingnews/world/eyausngbcwmh/

Date: 2009-05-06 04:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] redshira.livejournal.com
Ah, that's interesting. Not having a telly and not thinking to check Irish news websites, I found this on Shakesville rather than anywhere else.
Her situation is unimaginably terrible, and if she is found guilty (which I don't think will have anything to do with whether or not she actually is guilty), they will likely do what a lot of places do where they have the death penalty - wait until she's delivered the child, then kill her.

Yeah

Date: 2009-05-06 05:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jacesan.livejournal.com
I was reading about her predicament. Fucking horrible.

Re: Yeah

Date: 2009-05-07 08:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dragonmamma.livejournal.com
Mmmm...don't really know too much about this as havent been keeping up with world news, but it sounds pretty horrific if what you are saying is right. Being in prison in a place like that and getting pregnant (however it happened and for whatever reason) must be pretty awful.
Not knowing if she was carrying/dealing in drugs makes it difficult to comment on the rights and wrongs of her imprisonment, but generally a foreign national can be bailed out by its own country and sent back home to serve the term if guilt is proved, so I cant see why she has to stay there. A side comment - anyone doing anything with drugs in a country that has a death penalty policy in place must be gobsmackingly stupid at the very least.

Made it to CNN

Date: 2009-05-07 04:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] evilref.livejournal.com
http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/05/07/laos.british.woman.jail/index.html?iref=topnews
and it looks like they're talking about transferring her back to the UK if she is found guilty.
I don't know how much concerned 'bloggers have raised the profile of this, but it can't hurt.

Date: 2009-05-09 02:39 am (UTC)
redcountess: (Default)
From: [personal profile] redcountess
I just checked and Amnesty don't have anything about her, which is disturbing.

Date: 2009-05-09 03:06 am (UTC)
redcountess: (rosie the riveter)
From: [personal profile] redcountess
ETA: Have signed the petition and posted about it to FB. I suspect the poor woman met a guy and became a drug mule. Reprieve's website states that their counsel has been refused entry to Laos despite reassurances given. http://reprieve.org.uk/samantha_alleged_once.htm

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