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What has happened to Bali?

Discussion in 'Bali as part of the World' started by kacang, May 9, 2009.

  1. kacang

    kacang New Member

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    Does anyone else find it disturbing that 2 European blokes in their 20's, are facing a possible 10yr sentence for smoking some weed on a Friday night in Bali? (See below)


    Bali News: Drug Bust Nets 2 Swedish Men at Kuta Hotel.
    (5/2/2009) Two Swedish tourists, Kjell Avald Holst (25) and Karl John Brownell (26), have had an abrupt change of accommodation during their Bali holiday following their arrest by Bali police at a popular Kuta hotel and their removal to holding cells at police headquarters.
    According to a Bali police spokesman, the two were arrested at 11:20 p.m. on Friday night, May 1, 2009, following reports of strange aromas emanating from one of the hotel's guest rooms.
    After searching the room, police confiscated 5.5 grams of marijuana hidden in a laptop computer bag with the tourist admitting they had just personally consumed part of the drugs, purchased earlier in Lombok.
    The men told officials they had bought 20 marijuana cigarettes for Rp. 400,000 (US$36) on Gili island, near Lombok from a tour guide.
    The two men, now facing prosecution under Indonesia's tough anti-narcotics regulations, could each pay fines of Rp. 500 million (US$45,500) and 10 years imprisonment.


    What has happened to Bali? Is this just terrible bad luck (stupidity?) or does no-one smoke weed in Bali anymore??? I grew up on Sumatra, spent my teenage years in Bogor (Java), and spent a couple of summers in Bali (1970's), and we would trip down to the "Garden" many-a-morning for their **mushroom** omelettes, or spend a quiet evening with friends on the beach sharing some hash. No-one was ever afraid of police or narcs. Now I am not advocating drug use, I just find it ludicrious that these two guys are looking at this kind of sentence for something they can do legally in their neighboring homelands. So, is it completely verboten for those of you who live there? Are the Balinese (Indonesian?) drug laws so scary that no-one gets high anymore?
     
  2. Bert Vierstra

    Bert Vierstra Active Member

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    Some Swedes were high, for a while...

    Maybe they didn't read the signs at the airport....

    Yes, you can complain (afterwards) that the punishment is too much, and it should be upto European standards etc etc.

    But, unless you live with your head buried in the sand, you know that in a lot of Asian countries the penalties for drug use are severe. If you still do drugs, you know what can happen.

    Bad luck or stupidity?

    Stupidity.

    Nothing has happened to Bali. Something happened to stupid Swedes.
     
  3. gilbert de jong

    gilbert de jong Active Member

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    I don't think it's ridiculous...people (tourist) think sometimes that things that are 'normal' in their home country, is also 'normal' here :roll: .
    I am not saying, Balinese don't smoke, or pop pills, but foreigners are maybe targeted more by the police,but I feel no pity for those unlucky bastards at all...."If you can't do the time, don't do the crime" :lol: :lol: .
     
  4. Anton

    Anton Member

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    Kacang those guys were probably unlucky to be caught like that,this is not legal in any part of indonesia and one shouldnt be too laid back when using these low grade drugs as everybody knows indonesia has a drug problem just like many nations around the world so one should be on there guard,it was very foolish for these guys to be doing this in there room they should have sat on the beach this would have been safer, now they will have a big problem and i can only hope they will get off with a huge fine and a few months in the slammer.... :shock:






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  5. kacang

    kacang New Member

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    No, I guess what I mean is: maybe it's just the times, but we, (friends, both European and Indonesian) smoked quite openly without any consequence. I am free-er to partake, if I wish, in the US. I remember it being the other way around. Even though it is illegal, it is not considered some evil thing (although I am in California...). Again, I'm not advocating lots of folk laying around stoned all the time, just that it seems a bit medieval that a couple of joints gets that kind of sentence.
     
  6. Anton

    Anton Member

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    Kacang bali is a worldclass holiday destination for young, old, and families those 70s attitudes have gone not just from indonesia but from most of the world :(
    Now we have a world full of political correctness :shock:
    You should know the dangers of drugs by just looking in your own backyard :|
    You cant blame indonesia for wanting to protect its young :!:


    They can thank thier luckstars they were doing it privately maybe the judge will be abit lenient :|




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  7. Nakal

    Nakal Member

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    Kacang,

    Although I'm from Holland (quite liberal concerning drugs) I know very well not to bring nor use drugs in countries such as Indonesia. It's very clear and well known to everyone around the world the penalties for drug use are very high so they can't say they haven't been warned.

    Like Bert said... just stupidity and I think ignorance as well.
     
  8. mimpimanis

    mimpimanis Active Member

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    No. I can not believe anyone travelling in Indonesia and into that sort of thing does not know the risk they take and the possible penalties they may Incur. if you take the chance - dont complain afterwards.
     
  9. Dasha

    Dasha Member

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    Are the Balinese (Indonesian?) drug laws so scary that no-one gets high anymore?

    Pretty much since the Corby Saga and earlier for that matter.

    Does anyone else find it disturbing that 2 European blokes in their 20's, are facing a possible 10yr sentence for smoking some weed on a Friday night in Bali?

    Not really. As BV says it’s very clear to all tourists when you land – Domestic and International - and these guys would have got the drum twice seeing as though they came back from Mataram.

    Must say though, pretty stiff to get caught scoring the rubbish available on Gili. Such a waste and I agree with the ludicrous sentencing. But they are guests in this country and rule are rules.

    Hopefully these guys and their families can handle the long haul ahead. :cry:
     
  10. Markit

    Markit Well-Known Member

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    Just an interesting side note to this discussion: did it occur to any of you to ask where these draconian law originate from? As the thread so poignantly points out, in the past it was common for tourists to smoke some weed and enjoy the mushroom omelets with out fear of arrest. And that pretty much all over the developing world.

    These legal changes were mostly brought about through pressure from western countries on the developing world. Legal changes "suggested" by donor countries (US primarily) hinged to aid, financial, military and legal - as many of the 3rd world police forces where also trained in the US.

    So just chalk it up to the success of democracy around the world (tongue so firmly planted in cheek I can taste last nights whiskey) and the advance of freedom (land of the free, home of the brave :p ).

    They should thank their lucky stars that they weren't caught in the US where they would not only risk getting ten years but also get to enjoy the pleasures of forced sodomy in those wonderfully named "institutions of correction" they have there.

    I feel much safer at night with these kinds of people firmly locked up, don't you? :twisted:
     
  11. spicyayam

    spicyayam Active Member

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    The tough laws seem to stem from US policy linked to aid as Markit says. Also I think it is a way for some people to make some money. I wonder how many foreigners get busted, pay some money and it goes unreported.

    Around Lake Toba every restaurant still sells mushroom omlettes. It does seem unfair to me that one part of the country can be open and another so strict.
     
  12. Dasha

    Dasha Member

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    I feel much safer at night with these kinds of people firmly locked up, don't you?

    Do you mean the Swedes Markit :?:
     
  13. KaBIm

    KaBIm Member

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    Anyone proven guilty of growing, cultivating, having in stock, possessing, keeping or controlling narcotics belonging to category 1 (Golongan 1) is liable to a penal sanction up to IDR 500 millions and/or up to ten years in jail, as per the article 78 of the law 22/1997 on Narcotics. This law has replaced the one of 1976, which was indeed very similar. The main difference was that it was poorly implemented toward foreigners. It is what gave the impression that things were "cool" in Bali. Things started to change in the late 90', early 2000, with a first well publicised case involving a foreigner. It was Mickael Blanc, french citizen, caught at Ngurah Rai airport in December 1999 with a bit less than 4kg of haschisch. He was later sentenced to a life term in jail in November 2000. the sentence has been confirmed both in appeal and cassation. Mickael Blanc is still in jail as per today.
    Since this case, quite a few foreigners got lengthy jail term and these cases are usually well publicised overseas. Recently 2 austalians, part of the so called "Bali 9", were sentenced to death in an heroin smuggling case, while 6 of their feelows where sentenced to a life term and another one for 20 years. They were all in their 20's. Just before it, we had the case of Schapelle Corby who got a 20 years sentence and almost in the same time, a dutch and a french were sentenced also to death in a criminal case involving production of psychotropic. The above are the most "famous" case, but Indonesian courts have seen more "bule" appearing and being sentenced for "minor" offences. All got harsh punishment.
    Still countless young bule come to Indonesia and persist to ignore the ongoing stiff regulation. As Bert said, we are talking more about stupidity (to say the least) rather than unluckyness.
    It would be far to easy to blame Indonesian justice "targetting" foreigners. Indonesian justice is not more lenient with his fellows and Indonesian caught with a couple of joints receive harsher sentences than "bule" in many cases simply because they often can't afford a lawyer who will have the good "arguments" to ensure them (read: to buy) the recognition of "mitigating circumstances".
     
  14. Markit

    Markit Well-Known Member

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    Well balanced and fair too. Thanks for recapping for us all this ongoing story of idiocy, bad luck and needless waste that can be mirrored in almost any country around the world.

    I just wonder what people will think of us in a hundred years? Locking in small boxes so many of our fellow human beings for no reasonable purpose to no discernible effect and with no particular show of remorse.

    Me, for one, I'm very, very sorry. Truly.
     
  15. BALIHI

    BALIHI Member

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    I DOUBT THEY WILL GO AFTER THE SELLER OF THOSE JOINTS .
     
  16. Anton

    Anton Member

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    Well i remember when i was thier age :roll: i did alot of foolish things and i think we all had at that age :wink: otherwise we probably were'nt living ,now its not as if they smuggled the stuff into indonesia ! Ok they smoked the stuff but didnt bill clinton admit to having a puff !
    Anybody and everybody who went to university would have at some point had atleast minor contact with a prohibited substance ! We all know that that age group make mistakes ,i only hope that they dont get a heavy jailterm which would be a big waste of young live's 8)




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  17. KaBIm

    KaBIm Member

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    As far as I know, they will (if not done already) go after them. BNN (Badan Narkotika Nasional) usually do a great job and it has means (material and financial) that most of the other sections of the police just don't have. It is quite easy for them to catch fishes (small or big) all over Indonesia.
    I am always amazed to read very negative input based on assumptions by people with no or poor knowledge of the Indonesian judicial system.
    I remenber some years ago a discussion I had with a "KomBes". Komisaris besar are already quite high ranking police officer who are usually Kapolda/Kapoltabes or occupy similar functions. He made a statement that surprised me at that time, by telling me more or less this: "If I (meaning Pak komBes) am involved in a murder case, I know I may be able to find my way out. However If I am involved in a drug case, I know I won't." The underlying meaning of it really surprised me at that time. In a policeman mind, a drug case is a more evil stuff than a murder! :shock: Coming from a high ranking official, it left me perplex, but I have to say that he was right. So far, any cases I have studied proved him right.
     
  18. Markit

    Markit Well-Known Member

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    I would like to try and understand why you, and your policeman, think this way about drug cases.

    Is it because drug cases often have no clear cut victim and/or perpetrator as do murder cases?
     
  19. KaBIm

    KaBIm Member

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    Did I write that I was thinking the same than the policeman?
    What I said is that he was right in his statement: it is far more easy to get "out" from a murder case rather than a drug case. Drug cases involves a lot of money and anyone will milk the offenders: Police, lawyers, prosecutors and judges. It also explain why they will certainly (if not done yet as I stated) go after those who sold the joints.
     
  20. Dasha

    Dasha Member

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    “As far as I know, they will (if not done already) go after them.As far as I know, they will (if not done already) go after them.”

    Ive got news for you Ka Bim… they won’t.

    You have as much chance of getting busted on Gili T as you have of winning Tatslotto!!

    Ever been there? It’s location makes it just about impossible for anyone, Indonesian official no matter how official, to go unnoticed by locals. Like all drug infested locations across the world, the supply goes underground when any suspicious dudes arrive. How stupid do you think Indonesian dealers are? Next one - how many busts occur there? Makes you wonder sometimes just WHO is running the show out there on that small chain of islands i spose.

    Check it out for yourself next time you head to Nth West Lombok – it’s choca block! Pot heads galore – no cops. Been that way for years.

    “usually do a great job” – you gotta be kidding right? :shock:
     
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