December 23 2010
THE daughter of a British nuclear weapons scientist is facing death by hanging after being formally charged with drug trafficking in Malaysia.
Mother-of-two Shivaun Orton, whose late father Mike worked at Aldermaston weapons research centre, has been transferred in custody to a High Court after appearing before a lower court earlier this week with her Malaysian husband Abdul Harris Badilah.
They are jointly charged with drug trafficking and face individual charges in connection with heroin, cannabis, crystal meth and ecstasy. Both have pleaded not guilty.
The total value of the drugs was reported to be ?15,000. Possession of more than 15 grams of heroin carries the death penalty in Malaysia and execution is by hanging.
Ms Orton, 41, of Harlech, North Wales, told her 73-year-old widowed mother Shirley: ‘I am going down for life. Please keep your chin up and be happy.’ Before being transferred to the state High Court in Kuala Terengganu, Shivaun kissed her teenage sons goodbye, saying: ‘I love you.’
Shivaun and her husband run a ?35-a-night beachside backpacker complex. She has claimed that her Muslim husband is a womanising drug user while she was virtually imprisoned in their home.
Police say Ram Naruzal Shima an 18-yr-old girl who was arrested in their house at the same time will be released if Shivaun Orton and her husband confirm in statements that she was not involved. The girl tested negative in urine tests for drugs.