Police in Bali have announced that a recently arrested Italian-Austrlaian fugitive has been deported from the island. Police have also announced the arrest of another drug offender this week in an unrelated case.
On the 3rd of February, Antonio Strangio was arrested at Bali Airport in connection to drug offenses in Italy. Strangio was served with an Interpol red notice in November 2016 and was finally caught by authorities in Bali when he claimed to be visiting the island for a holiday.
Speaking at a press conference at Ngurah Rai Immigration Office on Sunday, 19th February, officials from Bali Police and the National Police Headquarters confirmed the deportation to the media. The Head of the Immigration Division of the Bali Provincial Office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Barron Ihsan, explained that Strangio was secretly deported on Sunday evening. Ihsan confirmed that in this instance, the fugitive was deported discretely, and the flight number and airline would not be made public.
Usually, in deportation cases in Indonesia, a few press photographers accompany immigration officials to the airport to document the detainee on their onward journey. It is also common for immigration officials to release the flight number and airline operating the deportation flight. Details of Strangio’s departure from Bali were kept under wraps for the safety and comfort of other passengers on the flight.
Ishan said, “We deported the Interpol fugitives who were subject to Red Notice in 2016. So the fugitive foreigner who was arrested on February 3, 2023, was then deported to his country, namely Italy.” He was deported on a commercial flight. After serious considerations from the Bali Police and the International Relations Division at the National Police Headquarters, Strangio was deemed not a threat to the crew or passengers. Strangio was issued a red notice from Interpol in connection to trafficking 160kg of marijuana in Italy in 2014.
Ishan confirmed that Strangio was accompanied on the flight by two police officers. He continued, “The escort was carried out by the Bali Police team and the International Relations Division at the National Police Headquarters at the request of the Italian Interpol. So those who deliver directly are our personnel. So the deportation is like ordinary passengers but escorted by officers. That’s why it’s done behind closed doors. There’s a fear of commotion on the plane.”
The Head of Public Relations of the Bali Regional Police, Kombes Pol Satake Bayu, also attended the conference and concluded the meeting. He confirmed that Italy had borne the full costs of Strnagio’s deportation. He explained, “[this is] the result of the coordination between Interpol from Indonesia and Italy that we will transfer the person concerned to Italy at the request of the party from there.”
Separately, North Kuta Police have confirmed the arrest of an Indian national with the initials AAM, aged 47, at a nightclub on Berawa Beach in Canggu. The arrest took place on Thursday, 9th February, and now the initial investigation is complete, details of the arrest can be made public. North Kuta Police Chief Commissioner, I Made Pramasetia, told reporters that AAM was arrested for possession of ‘cocaine-type’ drugs after a tip-off from an anonymous member of the public. The tip-off suggested that a foreigner had received drugs delivered via an online motorcycle taxi service.
Police conducted a raid on the property where the suspicious parcel was delivered. Pramasetia said, “When they searched his body and luggage, officers found evidence of cocaine-type drugs stored in a white bag. Inside was found a box containing two packs of coffee and an envelope containing cocaine.” The full investigation remains ongoing, and Pramasetia concluded to say that AAM has been charged with drug possession and “the suspect is currently in the process of examination and deepening for the legal process.”
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