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Judicial CP - February 1978
Sunday Express, London, 5 February 1978
Rubber to bite on but they still scream
From Joe Payne in Sydney
Malaysian officials have warned Europeans they will be flogged with the traditional rotan - a heavy six feet long bamboo cane - for drugs offences.
The cane has never been used on non-Asians, but last week Australian Robert Symes, 30, was sentenced to life imprisonment and six strokes of the rotan for carrying marijuana.
If the flogging is carried out he will be stripped naked, tied to a triangular frame and flogged across the buttocks. The only protection allowed is a cushion strapped across his back to prevent kidney damage.
He will also be given a piece of rubber to bite on. "But," said a Malaysian official, "that does not always stop their screams. It may sound inhuman, but it is the law."
Five other Australians are in Malaysian jails awaiting trial on similar drugs charges.
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