Man jailed six years for killing policeman

A British man was Monday jailed for six years over the killing of a policeman who was beaten to death on a beach on the Indonesian resort island of Bali.

David Taylor, 34, was found guilty by a court on the island of fatal group assault over the killing of officer Wayan Sudarsa, whose battered body was found in August last year.

The court was due to hand down its verdict for his Australian girlfriend Sara Connor, 46, later Monday.

Sudarsa’s blood-soaked body was found covered with dozens of wounds on his neck, chest and head.

Taylor admitting getting into a fight with Sudarsa on the beach after accusing the officer of stealing Connor’s handbag, and hitting him with items including binoculars and a beer bottle.

However, he claimed during his four-month trial that he had been in “fear of his life” and acted in self defence during the late-night brawl, and never intended to kill the officer.

Handing down the verdict and sentence, chief judge Yanto, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, told the court in the Balinese capital Denpasar that Taylor had been “legitimately and convincingly proven guilty” of group assault causing death.

It was shorter than the eight-year term demanded by prosecutors at an earlier hearing.

Taylor and mother-of-two Connor, who are based in Australia and had been on holiday on Bali, had been accused of murder as well as two lesser charges, including group assault causing death.
But prosecutors said they should not be convicted of murder, recognising that the pair did not intend to kill the officer.
A murder conviction would have carried a maximum jail term of 15 years.
Connor, who has been tried separately from Taylor, has maintained her innocence, saying that she only tried to pull the men apart as they fought. Prosecutors have recommended an eight-year jail term for her.
The pair fled the scene but Connor’s driving licence and ATM card were found next to the body, and police later caught them.
Bali, a pocket of Hinduism in Muslim-majority Indonesia, is a popular tourist destination known for its tropical climate and palm-fringed beaches.
Minor crime is common but murders are rare.

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Author: Femi Erinle
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