Peruvian to hang for cocaine trafficking in Malaysia

Peruvian Reyes Amasifuén Tello, a 30-year old Peruvian charged with cocaine trafficking in Malaysia, was sentenced to death Jan. 30 by a Kuala Lumpur court.

“We hoped that the sentence would be less severe,” said an anonymous source from Peru’s Embassy in Malaysia in comments to Radio Programas, or RPP. “It’s a difficult situation, and this will be taken to the supreme court if necessary.”

Tello’s lawyers are to appeal the sentence next week, based on the fact that the accused did not intend to traffic the drugs in Malaysia, but rather that he arrived on a transit flight from Buenos Aires to Singapore.

Tello was arrested May 15, 2007 in Kuala Lumpur by a police team acting on a tip-off. He was carrying 714 grams of cocaine contained in more than 100 capsules he had previously swallowed. Tello was reportedly paid $3,000 for transporting the drugs.

According to Malaysian law, anyone carrying more than 15 grams of heroin or cocaine, 1,000 grams of opium or 200 grams of cannabis is subject to the death penalty.

Five other Peruvians are awaiting trial in Malaysia for cocaine trafficking.

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