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China executes Filipina drugs mule

Second woman gets reprieve for good behavior

ucanews.com reporter, Manila
Philippines

July 3, 2013

The Foreign Ministry in Manila announced on Wednesday that China executed a 35-year-old Filipino woman for trafficking drugs.

Spokesman Raul Hernandez said that the death sentence was carried out despite a government appeal for the sentence to be commuted to life after the woman was found guilty of trafficking six kgs of heroin through Hangzhou Airport in January 2011.

“It is with profound sadness that we confirm that our fellow Filipino was executed in China this morning,” he told reporters in Manila.

Another Filipino woman who was also sentenced to death was given a two-year reprieve for good behavior.

Reports said the family of the executed Filipino woman had flown to China on Sunday and were able to talk with the woman for 30 minutes on Monday.

The woman had smuggled illegal drugs into China at least 18 times, the Foreign Ministry said.

Earlier in the day, leftist congressman Neri Javier Colmenares called on the Chinese government to commute the death sentence, claiming that she may not have been accorded her due process right to a competent counsel.

"This is among the predicaments many [overseas Filipinos workers] are facing. They are being imprisoned for allegedly being drug mules or illegal drugs traffickers," Colmenares said in a statement.

There are 710 Filipinos in jails across the world for acting as drug couriers of high-profile international syndicates.

China has imprisoned the highest number of Filipinos on drug-trafficking charges with 205 people behind bars, 28 of which are on death row.

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