Lorraine Cohen dies in hospital

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Lorraine Cohen dies in hospital

Lorraine Cohen, a New Zealander sentenced to death in Malaysia for drug smuggling in the 1980s, has died in hospital.


Mrs Cohen, 71, died in hospital in Auckland on Tuesday, her son Troy Pericles has told the New Zealand Herald.

In 1987, the 44-year-old was sentenced to death and another son Aaron, then 20, to life imprisonment and caning after both were found with heroin in their underwear at Penang International Airport two years earlier.

After a successful appeal for a pardon, they were both released from prison in 1996 and returned home.

However, in 2001, they were jailed for four years on further drug offences in New Zealand.

Their death sentence in Malaysia attracted major headlines in New Zealand in 1987 and in 1996 when they returned.

Aaron had originally been sentenced in Malaysia to a 20-year jail term for trafficking 34.16g of heroin.

Mrs Cohen, a self-confessed former prostitute and heroin addict, was sentenced to death for trafficking 140.7g of heroin.

Her sentence was later changed to life imprisonment before the pair was pardoned.