Briton David Taylor jailed over killing Indonesian cop

  • 13/03/2017
Briton David Taylor Australian Sara Connor (Reuters)
Briton David Taylor (2nd R), and Australian Sara Connor (2nd L) (Reuters)

British man David Taylor, the boyfriend of Australian woman Sara Connor, has been found guilty of fatal assault in company and jailed for six years.

Taylor was on Monday convicted of fatally assaulting a Bali police officer Wayan Sudarsa, almost seven months after his body was discovered on Kuta Beach.

Taylor, 34, stood as the sentence was handed down at Denpasar Court on Monday.

He was found guilty after the judges found it had been proven he deliberately inflicted violence.

Immediately after the verdict and sentence was read out, Taylor accepted the decision. The prosecutor, however, said an appeal would be considered.

Taylor hugged his parents at the back of the court before being led out.

Connor, 46, is expected to learn her fate on Monday afternoon (local time) but Judge Made Sukereni has already said that given the nature of the charge she must also be faced with the same offence.

Mr Sudarsa's bloodied body was found covered in sand on Kuta Beach in the early hours of August 17. He had 42 wounds across his head, chest and neck.

After Connor's driver's licence and ATM card was discovered next to his body, a hunt for the 46-year-old mother of two began on the island.

By August 19, after turning on her phone and hearing the news, Taylor and Connor burnt the clothes they were wearing on the night of the fight with Mr Sudarsa and then went to the Australian consulate in Bali.

They were arrested by police later that day and have been in custody since.

During the trial, which has spanned four months, the pair have faced the alternate charges of murder, fatal assault in company and fatal assault.

From the beginning, Connor has staunchly proclaimed her innocence, saying she did nothing but try to separate Taylor and Mr Sudarsa during their fight on Kuta Beach over her lost wallet.

But while prosecutors said they do not want the court to press ahead with the murder charge, conceding that the attack on Mr Sudarsa lacked intent to kill, they said both should be sentenced to eight years for fatal assault in company.

Violence erupted between Taylor and Mr Sudarsa, after the British man confronted him over the loss of Connor's purse on Kuta Beach.

Taylor claimed he was in "fear of his life" so acted in self-defence when he hit Mr Sudarsa with a mobile phone, the police officer's binoculars and a beer bottle.

He said Mr Sudarsa was still breathing when he took the police officer's identification cards and left him lying face up in the sand.

Connor and Taylor both told their trials that they had no idea of the seriousness of Mr Sudarsa's condition.

Taylor's six-year jail term includes time already served. Prisoners in Indonesia are also eligible to get regular remissions on their sentence for good behaviour.

Speaking after the verdict, Taylor's lawyer Haposan Sihombing said his client accepted the sentence and was glad it was more lenient than the eight years requested by prosecutors.

He said Taylor was co-operative, frank, admitted to what he did and had conveyed his condolences to Mr Sudarsa's family.