Renae Lawrence ‘anxious and depressed’

Renae Lawrence.
Renae Lawrence.

Convicted Bali Nine drug smuggler Renae Lawrence is suffering from anxiety and depression, NSW court documents reveal.

Lawrence is facing charges over an alleged 2005 high-speed stolen car chase with police.

The 41-year-old had been due to appear in Newcastle Local Court on Thursday a fortnight after arriving back in Australia following her release from a Bali prison where she served 13 years in jail for drug smuggling.

But her lawyer, Drew Hamilton, told magistrate Andrew Eckhold he had earlier contacted the court to have Lawrence excused from attending.

Mr Hamilton said there had been “meaningful discussions” with police over the matter and he asked for a four- to six-week adjournment until after the Christmas break.

Mr Eckhold agreed to adjourn the case to January 17 and indicated Lawrence would have to attend on that date if the matter was to be finalised.

After returning to Australia, Lawrence handed herself in to Waratah police station to answer outstanding warrants over the alleged chase with police.

Lawrence had been facing charges of car theft, driving unlicensed, exceeding the speed limit by 40 km/h and failing to stop for police before she travelled to Bali in April 2005.

Police claim she stole a hatchback at Enfield about 4am on March 26, 2005, and was driving at 130 km/h in a 90 zone at Mooney Mooney before her arrest.

Court documents reveal when Senior Constable Luke Williams listed his reasons for releasing Lawrence on bail last month, he argued she was unlikely to receive a custodial sentence over the outstanding charges “given the accused was just released from custody overseas for a 13-year sentence”.

Sen Const Williams also stated Lawrence had been diagnosed with anxiety and depression and was seeking treatment.

Lawrence was caught at Bali airport in April 2005 with 2.7 kilograms of heroin strapped to her body and jailed for 20 years. She served 13 years after being granted sentence reductions.

The two ringleaders in the smuggling plan, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, were executed in 2015.

Australian Associated Press