JODIE POWER-RIPLEY: She has spent much of the past six months visiting Schapelle Corby in a Bali jail.
JODIE POWER-RIPLEY: She has spent much of the past six months visiting Schapelle Corby in a Bali jail.

Mother reveals hidden costs of mercy mission

By BREE PRICE

MARGARET CAMPBELL'S voice cracks with emotion.

Her daughter, Jodie PowerRipley, of Byron Bay, is one of Schapelle Corby's closest friends.

For Ms Campbell, waiting to hear the sentence accused drug trafficker Schapelle will face has been tormenting.

She moves from frustration and anger to pride tinged with fear as she describes the impact Schapelle's arrest has had on Jodie, who has spent much of the past six months visiting the former Gold Coast beauty student in a Bali jail.

The 27-year-old could face death by firing squad if found guilty of smuggling more than 4kg of marijuana into Bali in her bodyboard bag in October.

"The hardest part is not knowing," Ms Campbell said.

"Jodie is scared. She's trying to keep busy. We just can't predict what will happen.

"The Corbys are family for my daughter, always there for her," she said.

"Jodie would walk over hot coals for them."

Ms Campbell said that even though countless trips to Bali had created a financial burden for Jodie, the emotional toll was harder to bear.

"It's been hard on Jodie's kids, Sasha and Kalani," she said.

"Eight-year-old Sasha said to Jodie, 'I miss you and I'm glad you're home, but why didn't you stay with Schapelle? She needs you'.

"I don't want to even look at images of Schapelle over there any more. Pictures in the paper cut me apart."

Ms Campbell is planning to move from her Gympie home to Byron Bay within the next two weeks to be closer to her daughter, whatever sentence Schapelle faces.

"I'm uprooting everything so I can be with my daughter, so I can be there if worst comes to worst," she said.

"I want to be there for her."

She said the strength Jodie had showed since Schapelle's arrest led her to see her daughter in a new light.

"I didn't realise how beautiful she was until this happened with Schapelle," she said.

"I've never been more proud of a person in my entire life."



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