15 Jan 2009

Australians jailed for two years over illegal entry in Papua

6:43 pm on 15 January 2009

Four Australians have been jailed for two years for illegally entering Indonesia's Papua province.

They are part of a group of five accused of entering Indonesia without proper visa documents when they travelled to Papua on a small chartered plane from Queensland last September.

The group, all aged between 50 and 60, were also fined more than 2,000 US dollars which could be replaced for another two months' imprisonment.

The Merauke District Court is yet to hand down its decision for pilot William Scott-Bloxam.

The Australians have described the flight as a sightseeing flight, claiming they mistakenly believed they could get visas on arrival in Papua.

Following the verdict, the group expressed disbelief and their lawyer indicated they would appeal.