A Bekasi court heard that the masterminds of an ecstasy racket were already in jail. Photo: iStock.

Two men have been given life terms in prison for organizing the smuggling of 600,000 ecstasy pills into Indonesia from the Netherlands — without ever leaving their jail cells. Prosecutors had wanted the death penalty and may lodge an appeal.

Bekasi District Court in West Java was told that Andang Anggaram, 27, and Sonny Sasmita, 41, arranged for another man called Waluyo to get the drugs through Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in late November 2017, The Jakarta Post reported. The pills were taken to Bekasi and recovered during a raid by police, who also arrested Waluyo and Anggaram’s younger brother Dadang as accomplices.

All this time Andang Anggaram was serving a sentence at Surakarta Penitentiary in Central Java, and Sasmita was incarcerated at Gunung Sindur Penitentiary in Bogor, West Java. Inquiries revealed that they had organized the operation.

Presiding judge Must Arif sentenced both to life imprisonment and ordered that they pay fines of one billion rupiahs (US$70,015) or face six more months in prison. The middleman in the scheme, Michael Assa, was jailed for 18 years and also fined one billion rupiahs or six additional months in prison. Waluyo and Dadang Anggaram have not yet been sentenced.

The prosecution is still considering whether to appeal against the leniency of the sentence.

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