Amrozi, known as the “laughing bomber” for his relaxed demeanour whilst under interrogation, may face death by firing squad if found guilty. The verdict will be handed down on 7 August.
“I am worried that the prosecutor and those infidels, hypocrites, tyrannical people will deem that I am afraid of being punished by death,” Amrozi told the five judges appointed to try him.
Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim country, is under pressure to convince the international community that it is serious in tackling terrorism.
Secessionist wars throughout the archipelago threaten to destroy national unity, and signs of sympathy for terrorism would likely damage its relations with the rest of the world.
Amrozi, a 40-year-old village mechanic, is one of four central suspects currently on trial for the bombing.
He stands accused of having organised the procurement of chemicals used in the attack, of helping transport bomb-making materials from Java to Bali, and of being a member of Jemaah Islamiah, an outlawed South East Asian terror network said to be linked to al-Qaeda.
Two of Amrozi’s brothers may also face death for their involvement in the worst terrorist attacks since 11 September 2001.
Mukhlas and Ali are both on trial in Bali. Ali, Amrozi’s younger brother, is the only bomb-maker to have expressed remorse for the 12 October attack.
“Our target was America and its allies because they are the international terrorists,” Ali told interrogators. “The mistake that needs to be pointed out is the way we apply it. I apologise to the families of the victims.”
The fourth suspect is Imam Samudra.
In a plea to the court, earlier this month, Amrozi said the bombing had a positive impact as it encouraged people to practice religion and dented foreigners’ plans to take over the economy of the holiday island.
Indonesian police have arrested as many as 30 people they describe as having played minor roles in the atrocity.