However, pending legislation in Malaysia to remove the compulsory death penalty for some convictions led to another last-ditch legal effort to save Exposto's life.
Australian grandmother Maria Elvira Pinto Exposto escaped the gallows on Tuesday when Malaysia's highest court overturned her conviction for trafficking crystal methamphetamine saying it was unsafe.
Maria Elvira Pinto Exposto (C) is escorted by Malaysian customs officials as she arrives court in Sepang on March 26, 2015.
She was arrested in December 2014 after being caught for trafficking crystal methamphetamine while in transit through Kuala Lumpur.
Maria Exposto, 55, was arrested in the Malaysian capital in 2014 while in transit to Melbourne from Shanghai, and in May previous year she was found guilty of smuggling more than a kilogramme of crystal metamphetamine.
The 55-year-old grandmother, from Cabramatta West in Sydney, was initially found not guilty in a lower court after it heard how she was set up in an online boyfriend scam by a man who identified himself as "Captain Daniel Smith", a United States soldier stationed in Afghanistan.
Her son Hugo said his family was delighted with the decision and that they "had just tried to take it one day at a time and do everything we can" throughout the five year ordeal. She said she befriended a stranger and was asked to carry a bag full of clothes but was unaware that drugs were concealed inside.
"Her behaviour was totally consistent with innocence", Mr Shafee told the judges.
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Exposto had maintained that she was duped into carrying the bag with the medicine by a good friend of her on-line boyfriend, who claimed to be a US soldier serving in Afghanistan.
"This effected her heart and she fell in love with him", Mr Shafee said.
In a statement her lawyer, Shafee Abdullah said that this was an example of women being scammed on the internet.
He said the scam had lasted a couple of years and Ms Exposto had even sent money to "Smith" before flying to Shanghai.
They arranged to meet in Shanghai, where he claimed he was to lodge documents for his retirement from the military, but he never turned up.
Amnesty International says 73 per cent of about 1300 people on death row in Malaysia were convicted of drug offenses, including 566 foreigners.
The former anti-human trafficking worker told the ABC's Four Corners program earlier this year that she had been communicating regularly with a man she believed to be Captain Smith.