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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 October, 2003, 04:50 GMT 05:50 UK
Death penalty for Bali bomber
Aftermath of the Bali bomb
More than 200 people, including 88 Australians, died in the attack
One of the main suspects tried in connection with last year's Bali attacks has been sentenced to death.

Mukhlas, also known as Ali Gufron, was described by prosecutors as the co-ordinator of the nightclub bombings which killed 202 people.

The Indonesian court judges said the charges against him were "legally and convincingly proven", there were no mitigating circumstances and he deserved the maximum sentence of death by firing squad.

Prosecutors alleged that the 43-year-old Islamic teacher chaired the preparatory meetings, channelled funds to finance the attack, and approved the targets.

He had admitted involvement in the attack, but denied that he played a direct role. He claimed he just gave the bombers religious guidance, and was not on Bali on the night of the attacks.

Taught at an Islamic school
Older brother of Amrozi
Alleged operations chief of JI

The BBC's Rachel Harvey in Bali said Mukhlas betrayed no emotion when the verdict was announced.

He said he would appeal against the ruling.

This could be a long and complicated appeal process, our correspondent says.

Mukhlas told an Indonesian court last month that he was only a "small fry terrorist" compared to the "big fish" of US President George Bush, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Three other key suspects in the attack have also been found guilty. One of Mukhlas' brothers, Amrozi, has been sentenced to death, along with the bombings' "field commander", Imam Samudra.

Justice will only be done when the perpetrators of this hideous crime are executed
Joe Smith, Hong Kong

Mukhlas' other brother, Ali Imron, has been sentenced to life in prison.

Infamous family

About a dozen accomplices, from more than 30 facing trial, have also received long jail terms.

The Bali attacks have been blamed on Jemaah Islamiah (JI), a south-east Asian militant group which is said to have links with Osama Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

Sentenced to death on 7 August
Convicted of providing the van and bombs used in the attacks
Imam Samudra
Sentenced to death on 10 September
Convicted of planning the attack
Ali Imron
Sentenced to life imprisonment on 18 September
Has admitted to assembling the main bomb
Mukhlas (Ali Gufron)
Trial began on 16 June
Accused of being the 'mastermind' behind the attacks
Also said to be operations chief of regional militant group Jemaah Islamiah (JI)
Abu Bakar Ba'asyir
Sentenced on 2 September to four years in jail for subversion
Acquitted of being JI's spiritual leader

Police and intelligence experts have said Mukhlas is a senior leader of JI.

Security is tight at the hearing on Thursday, with police patrolling the courthouse and manning roadblocks on nearby streets.

In the run-up to the first anniversary of the Bali attacks, on 12 October, there is mounting concern for the safety of those visiting the resort island for remembrance events.

The two bombs, which ripped through a busy nightclub area in the island's popular Kuta district, killed mostly foreign tourists.

Australia suffered the greatest number of casualties, with 88 Australian nationals losing their lives.

Thirty-eight Indonesians, 26 Britons, nine Swedes, seven Americans, six Germans and four Dutch nationals also lost their lives. In all, citizens from 21 countries were killed in the blasts.

Last week the Canberra Government warned against travel to Bali, citing reports of further attacks being planned in the region.

But Bali's chief of police, Major-General I Made Pastika, said on Thursday: "Don't let the threat stop our daily lives. By not being terrorised, we can fight the terrorists."

The BBC's Rajesh Mirchandani
"This last ruling marks the end of a painful process"


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