Sara Connor won't appeal four-year sentence for fatal assault

Bali: Byron Bay woman Sara Connor has decided not to appeal the four-year sentence handed down to her by a court in Bali for the fatal group assault that resulted in the death of police officer Wayan Sudarsa.

Speaking outside Bali's Kerobokan jail Robert Khuana, a lawyer for Connor, said that her legal team had urged her to appeal, conscious that the prosecution had said on Friday that it would do so.

"We spoke to Sara," he said. "We advised that since the prosecutor had appealed, if she didn't appeal she will likely get a heavier sentence. Because [if she did not appeal] the judge will only consider the argument from the prosecutor. High Court can [then] only rule the same [sentence] or heavier."

It is standard practice in Indonesia for prosecutors to appeal when the sentence is less than two-thirds of that requested. In this case, the prosecutors had requested eight years' jail.

Mr Khuana said her defence team still believed she could walk free, questioning the judges' finding that she sat on Mr Sudarsa's back to prevent him from defending himself.

"We believe she has a big opportunity to be released," he said. "The judge used just [that] one point to find her involvement - that she was restraining the victim when she sat on the victim. We believe we can argue that in the High Court and get that [thrown out]."

However Connor's brother David Pistidda was adamant after speaking to her at the jail: "Sara doesn't want to appeal. She thinks it's a bad, really bad idea to appeal. That's it. That's all she says."

If the High Court upholds the current sentence, prosecutors are expected to appeal to the Supreme Court.

Connor's decision not to appeal followed that of her boyfriend, British DJ David Taylor, who was sentenced to six years' jail for his role in the fatal group assault.

Taylor was candid during the trial about bashing Mr Sudarsa; first with the officer's own binoculars, then a mobile phone, and finally a Bintang beer bottle - which smashed upon impact - but said he did so in self-defence.

Both he and Connor insisted that her role was only to try to break up the fight. It was an argument the judges did not accept.

Mr Khuana suggested that Connor was afraid to press her case further.

"Maybe she get many information from inside [jail], people getting higher sentences [as a result of] appeals in the High Court," he said.

Four of the Bali Nine heroin smugglers infamously - and unexpectedly - had their life sentences overturned in the Supreme Court and the death sentence imposed as a result of appeals.

The story Sara Connor won't appeal four-year sentence for fatal assault first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.