22nd May 2012 3:45pm | By Jahn Vannisselroy
Convicted Australian drug smuggler Schapelle Corby could be released from her Indonesian prison as soon as August.
Corby was yesterday granted clemency by Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who cut five years from her jail term for bringing a commercial quantity of cannabis into Bali.
Corby has been incarcerated in Bali’s notorious Kerobokan Prison since 2005 when she was busted with a boogie board bag containing about 5kg of cannabis and subsequently sentenced to 20 years behind bars.
She continues to deny she knew anything about the marijuana and maintains she was set up.
It took two years for Indonesia to answer her pleas for clemency, an appeal lodged with the Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono himself in April 2010, on the basis of her mental illness.
Corby's new release date will be September 2017, but because of good behaviour and other reductions, she could be granted parole as soon as August. However, under Indonesian law, she may still have to serve her parole in Bali.
Corby's mother, Rosleigh, said last night: "I can't believe it. I want to bawl.
"It's a relief... every day we wait. I think it hasn't sunk in yet.
"We've been up before. We just have to keep calm."
But Corby may not be able to come home and may be forced to serve her parole in Bali.
It is likely there will be a renewed push to step up talks about a prisoner exchange deal between Australia and Indonesia.