The Straits Times
Published on Oct 22, 2012

People-smuggler jailed for 14 years in Australia


SYDNEY (AFP) - An Iranian-born man was jailed for 14 years on Monday for organising at least four people-smuggling boats from Indonesia to Australia, including an ill-fated vessel which crashed, killing 50 people.

Ali Khorram Heydarkhani, 41, was ordered to serve nine-and-a-half years without parole after pleading guilty to four counts of people-smuggling in the Perth District Court last month.

The journeys, made between June 2010 and January 2011, included a doomed vessel that disintegrated in a violent storm off Australia's Christmas Island, a remote Indian Ocean territory, in December 2010 killing 50 asylum seekers.

Three Indonesians who were crewing the smuggling ship were jailed for at least three years last month.