Life in a Thai Jail – Thailand
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We gain unprecedented access into two of Thailand’s most notorious prisons.
In the dim light of Big Tiger prison, men lie top to toe in overcrowded cells. New inmates sit idly jangling their feet irons, put-on them to reduce the prison suicide rate. Amongst these men is Lyle Doniger who with Deborah Spinner and Jane McKenzie smuggled in their bodies 10 heroin-packed condoms from Sydney to Thailand in 1996. These three Australian junkies gambled with Thailand’s famously tough smuggling laws and lost. “I was under the influence of drugs,” says Jane, “we really didn’t think before we took the actions we did.” In Thai law they are considered lucky, the mandatory death sentence for heroin trafficking was commuted to a 50-year jail term. Lyle is afraid he’ll go mad. “Most foreigners hit a wall at about six to eight years so I’m really sweating it.” In the women’s prison, Deborah laments her loss. “My son is 5 now. He doesn’t even remember me… that breaks my heart.” In these cells thousands of miles from home they must serve their time alone.
Produced by ABC Australia. Ref – 693
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