Rustenburg – A 30-year-old Botswana woman arrested for smuggling drugs in Bangladesh was set to be executed on Friday.
Lesedi Molapisi, of Ramotswa in Botswana, was arrested on arrival at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka in January. She arrived on an Qatar Airways flight from South Africa, which came via Doha.
Bangladeshi English-language daily newspaper, New Age, reported that airport’s customs officials and an intelligence agency intercepted Molapisi while crossing the green channel, the passage for arriving passengers with no goods to declare.
After scanning her bag, the customs officials seized over 3kg of a heroin-like granular substance.
At the time of her arrest, Daily Star in Bangladesh quoted Sanuwarul Kabir, deputy commissioner of Customs as saying: “We have information that cocaine was being smuggled, but officials from the department of narcotics control confirmed that the seized item was heroin. We will send the samples for laboratory tests.”
The Zimbabwean Mail reported that Bangladesh had strict anti-drug laws, which prescribe the death penalty for anyone caught illegally cultivating, producing, transporting, exporting, or importing heroin, cocaine, and cocaine derivatives drugs in excess of 25 grams or milliliters.
Molapisi was tried, found guilty, and sentenced to death, the Zimbabwean Mail reported.
According to Amnesty International, 579 executions were recorded in 18 countries in 2021, an increase of 20% from the 483 recorded in 2020.
Most known executions took place in China, Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Syria – in that order, Amnesty International said.