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Sydney woman Leeza Ormsby charged over drugs in Bali

Leeza Ormsby before to being transferred to Kerobokan prison.

Leeza Ormsby before to being transferred to Kerobokan prison. Photo: Hansel Nashyo

Leeza Ormsby, the Australian resident caught with drugs in Bali in February, is likely to receive a minimal prison sentence after police confirmed they wouldcharge her only over the half joint of cannabis found in her bag.

The New Zealand-born Sydney resident was ambushed by police on February 12 as she entered a villa in which 132.2 grams of MDMA and 26.06 grams of hashish were found in a locked drawer. The find potentially exposed her to a decades-long jail sentence, or even death by firing squad, under Indonesia’s tough drug laws.

While the possession charge still carries up to 12 years in prison, she is likely to be sent home in months given the tiny amount of hashish found in her bag.

Bali police said Leeza Ormsby would be indicted only for possession of 0.3 grams  of hashish.

Bali police said Leeza Ormsby would be indicted only for possession of 0.3 grams of hashish. Photo: Hansel Nashyo

Ormsby was caught after police received a tip-off. She was entering the villa using keys that also opened the drawer containing the drugs.

The man who had rented the villa, Sydney rock band frontman Azaria Byrne, had left Bali for Sydney the night before. Ormsby’s former boyfriend, Sydney DJ Marco Mazzucco, aka Marcotix, was also in Bali at the time and gave Ormsby the keys. He was questioned by police after voluntarily going to the police station, but denied any involvement and was allowed to leave.

One other mystery man, also a foreigner, was seen in a police car outside the villa during the search.

Bali police confirmed on Tuesday that after three months they had completed their investigation and handed the dossier to prosecutors, who said Ormsby would be indicted only for possession of 0.3 grams  of hashish.

''Today's evidence against her is only of the hashish found in her bag,'' prosecutor Oka Ariani Adikarini said. ''The evidence submitted by the police today was the hashish, the purse and the keys to the villa. The rest of the drugs are still being investigated by the police. At the moment it will not be part of the evidence we use against her, it's separate.''

Ormsby’s lawyer Ary Soenardi said he would prepare his defence based only on the evidence involving the joint, which was half-smoked.

''She didn't buy the joint, it was given to her by somebody she met at the beach the day before her arrest. She can't remember if she smoked it or not ... and she can't remember who the person was. It was another foreigner.''

Mr Ary said his client had admitted to her that, in Australia, she had had a drug problem. Indonesian courts are usually more lenient with  offenders who admit to being addicts.

Ormsby, who has avoided media questions since her arrest, insisted from the police cells that she had told the truth.

She was crying in her holding cell because cameramen continued to film her even after she covered her face with a scarf and faced the wall.

Now that her case has been handed to prosecutors, she will be transferred to Kerobokan prison while her trial is under way.

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