Former British war correspondent
David Fox, the British former war correspondent, attends his trial at a court in Denpasar Court in Bali, Indonesia. SONNY TUMBELAKA/AFP/Getty Images

A British former war correspondent, David Fox, and an Australian businessman, Giuseppe Serafino, are on trial in Indonesia on charges possessing hashish. The two appeared at Denpasar Court in Bali on Thursday (19 January) for the first day of their trials.

They were arrested in October 2016 after being caught with 10.09gm and 7.32gm of hashish, respectively.

If convicted of drug possession, transportation and use, the pair could face up to 12 years in jail, or four years of imprisonment if found guilty of use only, the BBC reported.

The police reportedly said 55-year-old Fox, an ex-Reuters reporter, told them that he had used the drug for years to overcome stress caused by covering conflicts.

"We will convince the judges with witnesses that he's an addict. He saw lots of horrible incidents so that every night, he couldn't sleep and started using drugs to calm himself," Fox's lawyer, Haposan Sihombing, said, citing his experiences from war-torn countries including Iraq, Afghanistan and Rwanda.

On the other hand 48-year-old Serafino, who has lived in Bali since 2011, started taking drugs as a substitute to prescribed pain medication.

Documents read in the court room stated that the Australian bar owner "used it with the intention of relieving back pain caused by a cyst in his kidney and to increase his appetite".

The men's cases are being heard separately. Neither of them is challenging the accusation against them.