24 Sep 2012

Indonesian soldier jailed over people smuggling

11:20 pm on 24 September 2012

A member of the Indonesian military has been sentenced to six years in prison over a people smuggling operation that saw more than 200 people die on route to Australia.

Ilmun Abdul Said admitted to sending seven boats to Australia since 2010, the ABC reports.

The last one sank off the coast of East Java, just before Christmas last year.

It was carrying more than twice the number of people it was designed for when it capsized in rough seas. More than 200 people drowned.

A military court in East Java has sentenced Ilmun to six years in prison, expelled him from the military and fined him more than $A50,000.

Ilmun says he was acting on orders from a higher ranking soldier and will appeal against the sentence.

He is the first soldier to be charged under Indonesia's new people smuggling laws, says the ABC.