Emma L'Aiguille, the Melbourne nurse facing drug charges in Malaysia. Picture: Flickr Source: HWT Image Library
Emma Louise L'Aiguille, 34, wept throughout the court hearing in Kuala Lumpur today as police continued to search for her partner.
It is alleged he left the scene minutes before officers searched their parked car and found 1.05 kilograms of methamphetamine - commonly known as ice - stashed under a back seat.
Ms L'Aiguille was in the driver's seat and will be hanged to death if convicted of the charge.
The incident happened on July 17 but only today was Ms L'Aiguille formally charged.
''She is completely depressed,'' her lawyer Muhammad Shafee Abdullah said.
''She just does not understand how this can happen to her, when all she did was to drive a car, in the company of some people.
L'aiguille was arrested with Nigerian man Anthony Ndidi Esikalam.
One other Nigerian man escaped and police are now looking for him.
L'Aiguille and Esikalam, who both reside in Malaysia, fronted the Jalan Duta Magistrates Court in Kuala Lumpur this afternoon, where they were each tentatively charged with one count of joint drug trafficking.
Under Malaysian law there's a mandatory death penalty for possession of 50 gram or more of methamphetamine.
Earlier L'Aiguille's Malaysian-based Australian lawyer, Tania Scivetti, says her client will maintain her innocence, saying the car was not hers and she did not know there were any drugs in it, despite being in the driver's seat when arrested.
Ms Scivetti says her client, who had worked as an aged-care nurse in Perth before moving to Malaysia, was suffering from depression and a chest infection, but was denied medical attention in custody.
Australian consular officials are providing assistance to her and her family in Melbourne.
She is not believed to have any family in Malaysia.
A chemist report on the alleged drugs which were found in the car will be heard in the Magistrates Court in Malaysia on October 1.
A date will then be set for a plea to be entered.
L'Aiguille is the second Australian to face the death penalty in Malaysia, after the arrest of 32-year-old Perth man Dominic Jude Christopher Bird five months ago for allegedly trying to sell them 167 gram of methamphetamine.
He has pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking and drug use and will appear in the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Friday.