Ron Corben -
July 13, 2009
Formally charged: Andrew Hoods (Reuters: Sukree Sukplang)
A 36-year-old Australian man who has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges will face a Thai court verdict in early August, court sources say.
Andrew Hood, a former storeman from the Sydney suburb of Annandale, pleaded guilty in May to charges of attempting to smuggle up to three kilograms of heroin strapped onto his body in small satchels.
A Thai court on Monday heard testimony from Thai police into details of his arrest last December at Bangkok's international airport with the heroin secured to his body in 12 packages.
Hood was arrested by customs officials as he made his way to the departure lounge. Reports said the heroin had an estimated street value of 12 million baht ($A480,000).
In an earlier hearing in May, Hood, fearing the death penalty, pleaded guilty to the charges.
In Thailand those found guilty of heroin trafficking face the death penalty, but this is commuted to a life sentence of 50 years. A guilty plea is also expected to allow for the court to show leniency.
Hood is currently being held at the notorious Klong Prem Prison.
He told the court in May there was "no way I'm fighting this one. You can't win. I've been informed by plenty of people."
Australian officials attended the court hearing and were providing Hood with consular assistance.
Hood had to have a court appointed lawyer to represent him.
The verdict was expected to be handed down on August 5.