The French Connection
Claude Josep Thierry Verchere French Expat Arrested for Heroin Possession in Denpasar
Police from the Narcotics Division of the Bali Police have arrested a Frenchman, Claude Josep Thierry Verchere (47), said to be in possession of 121 grams of cocaine with an estimated street value of US$46,000.
Police say the Frenchman, who lists his profession as a businessman, has been living in Bali with his wife and son for the past year.
According to reports by AFP, Verchere claims the drugs were for personal use and were purchased from an Iranian.
The Bali Post says he was arrested at his home on Jalan Tangkuban Perahu, Gang Merta Sedana No. 2 in Denpasar at 5:10 pm on Thursday, January 9, 2014.
Prior to the Frenchman’s arrest, police received information from the public that a foreigner was dealing narcotics; information police said led them to Verchere. Information on the Internet states Verchere has served as a French Marine and an overseas volunteer in Noumea in the 1980s.
The Frenchman has reportedly been living in Bali for the past year.
Subject to a charge of criminal possession of narcotics, Verchere could be sentenced up to 20 years in prison.
When I’m 64
Governor Pastika Wants Province to Invest in Special Accommodation Projects for Retired Tourists.
Bali governor Made Mangku Pastika has welcomed the findings of a tourism study on the potential of senior citizen travel.
The study, undertaken by a team of researchers led by Professor Dr. Ketut Sukardika, identified business opportunities and services that can be provided to retired travelers.
As reported by Beritadewata.com, the Governor said while there are many activities available to visiting senior citizens in Bali, but, at the same time, there are few accommodation options that cater specifically to this market segment. Meanwhile, competing destinations in Europe, Australia, Philippines and Malaysia are creating accommodation that addresses the special needs of older travelers. Pastika wants Bal to be on the cutting edge of securing a strong market share among retired holidaymakers.
Suardika’s study explored the concept of retirement tourism and described cottages that can be designed to appeal to this market segment. Such accommodation must be strategically located in a clean area, enjoy a pleasant climate and be equipped with supporting medical facilities. The occupants of these retirement cottages, according to Suardika, will fill their time with activities such as gardening, art appreciations and socializing.
It is estimated that Bali is home to thousands of retirees who. if localized into attractive accommodation projects, can create profitable business opportunities.
To facilitate such a project, the Governor has asked this administration to quickly identify provincial lands that could be used to develop retirement centers. Referring to an area on the outskirts of Ubud, Pastika told his staff: “Payangan would appear to be appropriate. It’s cool, close to Ubud and favored by older travelers. Go check (the land) there.”
“Older tourists have money and if we can facilitate their need, imagine the potential profits that can be obtained and how many jobs that can be created for our people,” said Pastika. Bali’s Governor requested that any feasibility study done be undertaken thoroughly and include plans made to optimize employment and training opportunities for local workers.
Pastika insisted any senior accommodation project must be “pro jobs, pro poverty alleviation, anti-traffic jam – all fctors demanding proper site selection of the site for any retirement village projects.
Keeping Expectations Grounded
Final Decision Said to be Imminent on Location of New North Bali Airport
While the debate continues of the final location for a proposed second international airport for Bali somewhere along the Island’s north shore, the provincial spokesperson, I Ketut Teneng, said a final decision on the location would be made near the end of January 2014.
Two sites are reportedly in the running located in Sumberkima west of Singaraja or Kubutambahan east of Singaraja.
Teneng said studies comparing the two sites are now before the Ministry of Transportation in Jakarta.
Estimates suggests whichever site is finally chosen, some 650 hectares of land will be needed to create a modern airport. The proposed site in Kubutambahan comprises only 400 hectares, meaning an additional 250-hectare must still be identified by the Buleleng Regency and the Province in order to allow the project to go ahead in that location.
A new site in north Kubutambahan has been identified that would require less displacement of existing households and businesses and an earlier Kubutambahan site. The quality of the proposed land is poor and arid, not suitable for agricultural pursuits. Teneng said these factors should make the acquisition of land for the project less problematic.
Teneng insisted the provincial government of Bali remains committed to creating an airport in North Bali in the regency of Buleleng. At the same time, the provincial spokesperson warned that all involved in developing the project must remain realistic in their expectations.
Ideally, he explained, in one month the new airport should be able to handle 10,000 passengers on an inbound and outbound basis. “Will this target be achieved or not? Don’t let us fail to hit that target and see the government suffer losses,” he said.
Reminding that Bali is, after all, a small island, Teneng admitted it will be difficult to persuade people to fly into Buleleng when most tourists want to visit the southernmost tourist areas. Because of this, a supporting infrastructure of roads connecting the new airport with the South is also needed.
South Bali as a Port of Call
Bali Port of Benoa Targeting for 41% more Cruise Visits in 2014
PT Pelindo who operates the Bali cruise port of Benoa is targeting to welcome 58 cruise shops in 2014.
Ali Sodikin, the general manager of the Pelindo III, told the State News Agency Antara: "The potential of tourist visits via cruise ships to Bali, especially through the Benoa seaport, is still high. We have made the required preparations.”
The target of 58 cruise ship visits in 2014 represents a 41% improvement over 2013 when 41 ship visits were logged by the Island’s southernmost port.
Those 41 ships carried an estimated 39,000 tourists to Bali.
Ship Handling by Bali Discovery
Communicating with Spirits
3 Dead and 35 Sick After Drinking Contaminated Spirits in North Bali
Home-made alcoholic beverages continue to maim and kill both tourists and locals in Bali.
The latest contaminated drink tragedy unfolded in the village of Munduk, Banjar in the regency of Buleleng. After consuming illegal moonshine 3 residents of Munduk are dead and 35 are ill.
The dead at I Gede Suta Arjawa (39), I Made Dwi Adnyana (45) and I Komang Rudi Alam (35).
Arjawa and Alam died on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 while Adnyana expired two days earlier on Sunday, January 12, 2014.
While details remain sketchy, it is believed that Adnyana purchased and consumed locally-made liquor in Munduk at a local kiosk or warung. He fell instantly ill and died at 10:00 am on Sunday, January 12, 2014 at the Buleleng General Hospital in North Bali.
News of the man’s death brought friends and villagers to Adnyana’s home in Banjar Taman in Munduk on the Sunday afternoon to pay respects. A local village official told authorities that some of the men attending the man’s wake may have consumed more illicit alcohol at Adnyana’s home or a nearby kiosk that resulted in the death of the two more on Tuesday and medical treatment for 35 more.
The village chief confirmed that the unused “arak” left behind by Adnyana was drunk by the dead man’s friends who may have also stopped to drink more arak at a local warung prior that.
Komang Rudi Alam died at Parama Sidhi Hospital in Singaraja on Tuesday morning at 3:00 am while Gede Suta Arjawa perished in the same hospital an hour later. Of the 35 others sickened by the alcohol only two required hospitalization with the remainder treated on an outpatient basis.
One of the sick men said he joined a group drinking arak at Warung Duta in Munduk. Later, when he was suddenly unable to see, his family rushed him to a hospital.
According to NusaBali, Police have taken into custody for further questioning I Komang Duta Artawan, the owner of the warung and the man believed to have sold the illegal arak. Artawan’s detention follows a sweep of local warungs by police. Also seized from Artawan were 50 liters of arak in a large plastic container.
Komang Datuk is denying that he sells illegal arak, telling police he only sells quality arak purchased in Bestala, Buleleng, North Bali. Datuk told police: “This is the arak I got in Bestala. It’s said to be pure arak. I only sell arak, I never mix it with anything.”
The wife of one of the dead men, Gede Suta Arjawa, said she had repeatedly scolded her husband not to drink strong alcohol. Arjawa, who worked as a driver and leaves behind two small children, always replied, with the now ironic, response of, “Don’t forbid me to drink. Life is too short.”
Cases of death and illness due to the consumption of illegal arak are continuing to cause casualties among local residents and tourist visitors. In 2012, a total of 3 died and 39 were made ill in Kintamani after a drinking party in Katung Village in the regency of Bangli.
For many of the sick the effects are lasting with loss of sight and brain damage reported. Others who have suffered kidney damage, are forced to become permanent patients of kidney dialysis.
In an update published by DenPost on January 18, 2014, police have now confirmed the arrest of five people in North Bali involved in the production, sale and distribution of the arak blamed for the deaths and injuries in Munduk incident.
Bali as a Role Model
Three Areas of Bali Designated to Get Jakarta Funding and Design Assistance as Tourism Destination Pilot Projects
The areas of Sanur, Nusa Dua and Kuta have been designated as pilot projects for the development of high quality tourism destinations. These three areas of Bali are to be designed and developed to become role models on how to develop high-quality tourism destinations in other parts of Indonesia.
As reported by Beritabali.com, the plan for developing these three areas was explained by the Minister of Tourism a the Creative Economy, Mari Elka Pangestu, during a visit to the Governor of Bali on Monday, January 13, 2013.
“In designing these areas,” said Pengestu, “the government will always coordinate with the people and include their input to make the end result useful to the local community and to preserve the environment.
The Minister revealed that a process of focus group discussions have been held in the subject communities in order to ascertain the aspirations and needs of the local populace.
Pangestu explained that the foci of national tourism development for 2014 are the design of tourism destinations, the development of facilities and infrastructure, improving the quality of manpower working in tourism, the standardization of tourism workers and tourism promotion.
Nationally, Indonesia is targeting 9.2 million foreign visitors in 2013 with the five leading source markets being Australia, Mainland China, Malaysia, Japan and Singapore.
The Minister told the press that tourism will continue to remain a major force in the national economy, following the example set by the tourism sector that grew 5.26% in 2013 – a figure slightly ahead of the growth rate of national economy as a whole.
Governor Pastika said he welcomed plans by the national government to held design tourism areas and contribute the needed infrastructure projects. Adding: “For the immediate future there are only three areas destined to be pilot project in Bali. They are Merta Sari Beach in Sanur, Pandawa Beach in Kuta and the beach at Nusa Dua.”
Bali’s governor warned that support form the central government must be used wisely to reduce the burden of the regional government and allow their resources to be used in other areas. Pastika urged that the people of Bali must preserve their agrarian society and not all be attracted to work in the cities in tourism.
“Without agriculture, the culture of Bali will be lost. If we lose the culture, then Bali tourism will also be lost,” warned the governor.
Spend the Weekend at Luke’s Place
Luke Mangan’s Salt Tapas in Bali Serving Affordable Family Lunch Every Sunday 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
Australian celebrity chef Luke Mangan’s Bali incarnation - Salt tapas is striving to liven up weekends on the island of Bali by introducing a Sunday Family Brunch.
Designed to provide families with a fun day out in the relaxed atmosphere of Sentosa Seminyak – the day includes children’s activities, foot massages, DJ performance and a complete lunch menu for only Rp. 155,000++ per person (US$15) and Rp. 85,000++ per child (US$8.25).
“Every Sunday we organize activities and toys for children plus unlimited churros for them to snack on whilst they play. We present a special menu with attractive prices and there are even soothing sessions of foot massage to help parents unwind,” explained Rafael Nardo, the restaurant manager of Salt tapas.
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Best of all, families can enjoy Luke Mangan’s culinary delights while taking advantage of the Sentosa Seminyak’s resort facilities that include the main swimming pool and a world-class spa.
Salt tapas by Luke Mangan opened in September 2013, joining a worldwide range of signature restaurants offering chef Mangan’s amazing cuisine and classic cocktails.
Sunday Family Lunch is served between 11:00 am and 3:00 pm.
Promoting Bali and Beyond
Minister Pangestu: Bali and Beyond Travel Mart Set for July 2014 in Bali
Beritadewata.com reports that the Ministry of Tourism and the Creative Economy will hold a Bali and Beyond Travel Mart in Bali in July 2014.
Mari Elka Pangestu, Minister of Tourism and the Creative Economy, explained that the planned travel mart in Bali will help Indonesia achieve its targeted 9.2 million foreign tourists in 2014.
While the specific locale in Bali for the travel mart and other dertails have yet to be announced, the Minister said: “Why in Bali? Because Bali contributes more than 40% of all foreign visitors to Indonesia while the remainder come from other regions in Indonesia.”
Pangestu said the travel mark is being placed in Bali because of the Island’s role as the gateway of Indonesian tourism. Bali serves as the port of entry for many visitors before venturing on to other locales across the archipelago.
We are Sailing
Balinese Working on Cruise Ships an Important Source of Foreign Exchange Earnings
Indonesians working abroad continue to represent a significant contribution of foreign exchange to the national economy.
Within that group, expatriate Indonesians are a source of increasingly valuable U.S. dollars for the Bali economy via remittances back home.
Among the segment of exptariate Balinese working abroad are an estimated 12,500 Balinese aboard foreign cruise ships.
The chairman of the Indonesian Seaman’s Union (KPI), I Dewa Nyoman Budiasa, estimates that Balinese send home an estimated US$12.5 million dollars adding to the foreign exchange revenue of the island.
Budiasa explained that the typical Balinese sailor will send home money to his family each month, creating a multiplying effect in additional spending in the home village of the sailor.
Budiasa estimates that Balinese sailors, working overtime on ships for extra pay, are earning between US$1,000 – US$3,000 each month, depending on the position held.
What’s the Buzz?
Bali Health Officials Call on Public to Clean Their Yards to Halt the Spread of Dengue Fever
The Bali Health Service is calling on Island residents to be vigilant in taking steps to avoid being infected with dengue fever.
Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, the man in charge of Bali’s Health Office, Dr. Ketut Suarjaya, said, “We ask the public to be aware of the threat of dengue fever and improve hygiene and cleanliness measures at their private residences.”
Suajaya said steps to prevent the propagation of the aede aegypti mosquito must be undertaken during the period of seasonal change when mosquito populations tend to peak.
Suarjaya said teams from his office are intensifying sweeps to destroy nesting areas for mosquitoes.
The Health official said his office is recommending to the Governor that special days be designated to mobilize the public to destroy potential nesting areas of mosquitoes.
Politics - A Topic Best Avoided
Balinese Being told to Tone Down Ogoh –Ogoh Parades in Run Up to 2014 Elections
Bali election officials are concerned that traditional ogoh-ogoh parades to be held on March 30, 2014 to celebrate Nyepi Eve will become unduly politicized in the period immediately prior to legislative elections scheduled to take place ten days later on April 9, 2014.
A long-standing tradition in Bali sees villages create massive papier mâché floats that are paraded through the streets on the eve before the official day of silence of Nyepi.
Beritadewata.com quotes the chairman of the Bali Election Commission (KPU-Bali), Dewa Kadek Warsa Rakasandi, who has called on banjars across Bali to avoid adopting political theme of the ogoh-ogoh floats that typically depict monsters, gods, rock stars and public figures in caricature.
Rakasandi admitted to the press that the KPUD-Bali has no authority to regulate or control ogoh-ogoh presentations. Nonetheless, as the agency in charge of ensuring a smooth-running and fair election process in Bali, he hopes the public would not use the religious and cultural moment to score political points.
The KPUD-Bali chief emphasized that his agency clearly has no power to ban ogoh-ogoh parades - a topic recently discussed by the network of traditional villages (Majelis Utama Desa Pakraman), Hinduism Society (Parisada), the government of Bali and law enforcement agencies.
Local official are proposing that ogoh-ogoh parades remain in their home locales without crossing into other communities, that all ogoh-ogoh refrain from using political themes and those involved in the parade process be forbidden to consume alcohol.
If officials are successful in enforcing these rules on March 30, 2014, the Nyepi Parade in 2014 will be substantially different from years past.
Tree Blown Down by High Winds Kills Balinese Woman in Sanur
A localized whirlwind, known locally as putting beliung, touched down in a corner of Sanur on Thursday, January 16, 2014, felling a tree that struck a passing vehicle and killed a 70-year-old female passenger.
At 4:10 pm on Thursday, January 16, 2014 a Toyota Kijang carrying pilgrims back from prayers at a nearby Balinese temple was crushed by a falling tree at the intersection of Jalan Mertasari and Jalan Pura Mertasari.
The tree, believed to be hundreds of years old, toppled over onto the passing vehicle. While five of the car’s six passengers escaped largely unscathed, 70-year old Ni Nyoman Kontong was trapped in the back seat of the car beneath a crushed rooftop.
It took rescue officials 1.5 hours to remove the woman from the car who had died from injuries to her head.
In addition to the Kijang, a passing motorcycle was also struck by the tree causing minor injuries to its rider.
Eye-to-Eye Celebration of Color
‘Banten’ – An Exhibition of Art by J.P van Opheusden at Agung Rai Museum – Ubud, Bali January 25 – February 23, 2014
Jan Peter van Opheusden, a renowned Dutch artists and colorist will be displaying his works in a month-long exhibition entitled “Banten” at the Agung Rai Museum of Art in Ubud, Bali from January 25 through February 23, 2014.
Jan Peter Van Opheusden
Born in Eindhoven The Netherlands, in 1941Van Opheusden received his formal training at Eindhoven’s Academy For Industrial Design.
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e continues to make his home in Endhoven where J.P van Opheusden is a well-known painter, having published a collection of his work entitled “Oog in Oog” or “Eye to Eye.”
In a distinguished career, this Dutch artist has held solo exhibitions in The Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, USA, Tunisia, Monaco, France, Spa, Singapore, Russia, China and Indonesia.
It has been said about Jan Peter Van Opheusden: ” that his work “celebrates his deeply rooted love for life. Jan Peter paints in earnest just like he is himself. As one views his work one feels his love for beauty, strength and harmony. His works are strong in their colors and captivating thanks to the positive energy they emanate."
An Exhibition of Paintings
by Jan Peter van Opheusden
January 25 – February 23, 2014
Agung Rai Museum of Art
Jalan Raya Pengosekan
No Smoking in Public: That’s The Law in Bali
Balidiscovery.com Breaks Down Key Points of Island’s Non-Smoking Rules – A Must Read for Hotel, Restaurant, Bar and Shop Operators
On January 1, 2014, the Province of Bali formally promulgated its new law on smoke-free zones (Peraturan Daerah Bali Nomor 10 Tahun 2011 Tentang Kawasan Tanpa Rokok).
The new law provides for penalties of 3 months detention or fines of Rp. 50,000 for those guilty of smoking in prohibited places and managers of venues that allow such activity.
Among the areas where it is now illegal to smoke in Bali are:
Medical facilities, including:
Maternity and birthing centers
Public health centers
Medication centers (Balai pengobatan)
Inoculation centers (Posyandu)
Private medical practices
Places of education, including:
Places of higher education
Training and education centers
Job training centers
Study and tutoring centers
Private course centers
Recreational areas for children, including:
Places of worship, including:
Balinese temples or pura
Mosques and Islamic Prayer rooms (mushola)
Buddhist Temples (Vihara)
Chinese Temples (Klenteng)
Public transport, including:
City transport including tourist buses, public transport buses such as the Sarbagita bus system, school buses and company staff buses.
Work places or places of employment, including:
Police and Military offices
Private company offices
Repair and work shops
Public places, including:
Modern shopping centers and malls
Tourism attractions and tourist centers
Public transport terminals
Goods and cargo terminals
Seaports and Airports
At their option, managers of public places may provide special areas for smokers. These areas, however, must be either outdoor spaces or enclosed areas well separated from pedestrian traffic areas, non-smoking areas and public entrances.
Under the rules, managers and those responsible for the smoke free area are required by law to supervise smoke-free areas, enforce non-smoking provisions of the law, NOT place ashtrays and other smoking accessories in non-smoking areas and install “no smoking” signs in the areas stipulated as smoke-free under the law.
It is also now also illegal to promote or sell tobacco products in areas stipulated as smoke-free zones under the law.
The new law also encourages the public to participate in the establishment and enforcement of smoke-free zones by helping to prepare smoking areas and lounges; educating the public on the non-smoking rules; reminding people found violating the smoke-free zone rules; and report violators of the smoke-free zone law to those responsible for maintaining smoke-free zones.
The law empowers the Indonesian police to investigate complaints regarding all failures to enforce or obey the smoke-free zone rules. This includes investigation, interrogation and the collection of evidence in connection with any supposed violation.
Under the law, the manager of a smoke-free zone who allows smoking in these areas is also subject to prosecution. The penalty of Rp. 50,000 (US$4) or 3 months in prison can be applied against individuals caught smoking in non-smoking area and those in charge of locations and venues failing to enforce the non-smoking regulations.
When Bali Business Gets into Hot Water
Growth in Number of Hot Water Spas Operating at Kintamani Volcano in Bali
Bisnis Bali reports that an increasing number of commercial hot-water spring are establishing their business Toyabungkah in Kintamani on the shore of volcanic Lake Batur.
The new hot water springs are in response to a growing demand for natural hot water bathing by visitors to Kintamani.
I Nyoman Muliawan, a local entrepreneur who has established a hot water spa, testified that hot-water spring businesses continues to grow. Muliawan said visitors enjoy the close proximity of the hot springs to Lake Batur, the panoramic views and the chance to dine on the fresh water fish endemic to the area.
While several years ago there were only two hot water pool, there are not at least five in operation.
Those seeking to establish a hot-water spring need a plot of land and the readiness to drill until a vein of hot water fed by the nearby volcano is discovered.
Putting on Airs in Bali
Rainy Season Resulting in High Durian Prices in Bali
Heavy rains have affected the current year’s harvest of durians – the uniquely Southeast Asia delicacy of a spike fruit claimed to “smell like hell, but taste like heaven."
Reduced harvest of the and restrictions on imports have caused prices to "spike" with demand outstripping supply.
Bisnis Bali reports that premium (unggal) durian is currently selling at Rp. 70,000 per piece (US$5.60). Meanwhile, class A and class B durians are going for Rp. 25,000 each (US$2); class C for Rp. 15,000 each (US$1.20); and the smallest durians of Class D selling for Rp. 10,000 each (US$0.80).
Komang Mawa, a durian farmer from Jembrana in East Bali said prices have remained consistently high since the start of the current harvest. Mawa says that he is currently selling between 50 and 70 durian each day across the entire price and class range. Consumers, however, have a preference for the least expensive Class D fruits. Those farmers specializing in “unggul” durian are reporting sales levels of only 40 pieces over the course of an entire week.
Farmers relate that durian tree fail to produce fruit in a continuously rainy situation, meaning the current season may yield a substantially smaller crop than in previous years.
For comparison purposes the “unggul” durian sold for only Rp. 30,000 (US$2.40) during the durian season of 2013.
Death on a Distant Sea, Far From Home
Balinese Crew Member on Carnival Splendor Dies Only 17 Days After Joining Cruise Ship in Florida.
A 21-year-old Balinese man working as a crew member on board the Carnival Splendor cruise ship has died, just days after joining the ship.
I Wayan Barsiana died on December 23, 2013 after joining the ship’s crew in Florida (USA) on December 6, 2013.
Due to requirements for post mortem examination and administrative requirements, the young man’s body was only turned over to his family in Bali on Monday, January 13, 2014, nearly three week’s after Barsiana’s demise.
Wayan Barsiana was born in Banjar Intaran, Pejeng in Gianyar and attended High School in Tampaksiring. Prior to joining Carnival Cruise Wayan worked at The Villas in Seminyak.
The young man was said to be diligent in calling or texting his family and girlfriend on a daily basis, contact that suddenly stopped on December 21, 2013, when he told his family he had developed a cough. Two days later on December 23, 2104 a manager from Carnival Cruise Lines telephoned the Barsiana's mother to advise her son had died in his crew cabin.
According to NusaBali, the crewman’s family has received no further details in connection with the circumstances or cause of their son’s death.
Wayan Barisana’s body was buried in his home village several hours after it arrived back in Bali on January 13, 2013.
The 3,000-passenger Carnival Splendor was launched in 2008. It's history as a cruise ship includes a dramatic fire on November 8, 2010 that left it dead in the water. No injuries resulted from that fire. The ship – without power - was towed into San Diego with 4,500 passengers and crew 3 days later.
High Flying Politicians
Bali Airport Managers Predicting Surge in Passengers as Indonesia Enters a Political Year
Angkasa Pura I, the managers of Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport, is projecting a surge in passenger traffic in connection with the legislative and presidential elections taking place in April and July of 2014.
An Angkasa Pura spokesman told The Bali Post: “A political year will certainly have an impact on the aviation industry. Many politicians will be campaigning in other regions and be attending political meetings and rallies – meaning the number of trips will increase.
The airport spokesman said that an increase in charter flights is also expected as part of the surge in traffic tied to the elections. To meet the growing demand for charter flights, Bali now has sixteen slots for non-commercial private jets to park in a new apron area create on the southern side of the main runway.
Larceny at 30,000 Feet
Three Chinese Men Caught Pilfering Hand Bags on a Garuda Flights between Bangkok and Jakarta
Tribunenews.com reports the detection of three Chinese “tourists” caught stealing thousands of dollars from the hand luggage of a passenger flying from Bangkok to Jakarta on Garuda Indonesia.
On December 18, 2013, Kristiantoko, an Indonesian passenger on board Garuda Indonesian (GA 866) from Jakarta to Bangkok lost tens of millions of Rupiah from his hand luggage, only discovered when he landed at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport.
Prior to the flight he had placed his wristwatch, wallet and an envelope containing money in his hand-luggage prior to boarding the flight. Reconstructing the incident, Kristiantoko suspects his bag was opened and valuables removed while he was using the airplane’s restroom. The bag, minus the money and other valuables, was returned to its place in the overhead compartment when the man returned to his seat, unaware that the theft had taken place.
When he arrived in Bangkok a colleague traveling on the same flight said he saw a man remove a bag resembling Kristianto’s while he was in the toilet, but was not aware it was his friend’s bag at the time.
Kris lost a wristwatch worth Rp. 4 million, US$1,644, Baht 13,000 – bringing his total losses to around US$2,000.
Reporting his loss to Garuda Indonesia ground staff in Bangkok, he was taken to the Thai police where he filed a report detailing the incident.
Kristianto shared his sad story with a number of friends and colleagues, including Rio, who was in Bangkok and flew back to Jakarta a few days before Christmas.
Rio, remembering what hat happened to his friend, remained observant while flying back to Jakarta. During that flight back home, Rio observed three men get out of their seats and remove bags from the overhead compartments. One of the bags was located in the compartment directly over Rio’s head and belonged to a sleeping man seated next to him.
Rio later woke the man to tell him that someone had tampered with his hand luggage. Checking his bag, the man discovered that US$5,000 was missing.
The two men informed the Garuda cabin crew of what had just happened who allowed the thieves to disembark the airplane in Jakarta before having them detained by security staff at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta airport.
Rio, serving as a witness in the theft, attended the inspection of the three men where officials discovered the missing money in the possession the three men who carried Chinese passports.
Because the victim of the crime only wanted to recover his money, he chose not to prosecute the case forcing officials to release the thieves without charge. The inspection of the men’s passports, however, showed the men had traveled eight times in the past month between Bangkok and Bali.
The airline recorded the men’s identity to be placed on a blacklist for any future flights with Garuda Indonesia.
The men, relieved at not being placed under arrest, quickly departed Indonesia on the next international flight.
A Garuda Indonesia spokesman, Merlin, confirmed that similar incidents had been reported in the past. He urged the public to always be aware of their personal belongings when on board any flight.
Come to Bali and be Fruitful
Join a Fertility Retreat in Ubud, Bali with Dr. Alex Perry
Leading Australian natural fertility and pregnancy specialist Dr Alex Perry is conducting a series of international fertility retreats in Ubud, Bali throughout 2014.
Dr. Perry brings a reputation of a remarkable 86% fertility success rate in human fertility to Bali.
The first retreat in the series started on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014.
Why Bali? Perry says that while the world has other fertility retreats the Bali program is different. Adding: “I want couples who join me in Bali to enjoy the environment, relax, have fun and take away with them new and lasting skills for conception. I’m very excited about the retreats and their potential to give couples the children they long for.”
“I’m passionately committed to women’s health and especially to finding whole of life solutions to fertility and pregnancy problems. Nothing pleases me more than to help a couple conceive and to nurture them through natural childbirth and into parenthood.”
The 7-day retreats present a new concept for conception that mixes the relaxing and fertile rice field environment of Bali with personalized attention from Dr Perry and key elements of his signature Patient-to-Parent Fertility Program.
Perry is a doctor of Chinese medicine who operates The Perry Centre clinics in Canberra, Australia. At The Perry Centre, his Patient-to-Parent program achieves 86% fertility success and gives new hope to couples that have struggled to conceive.
Key elements of the signature program, including Dr Perry’s audit of hidden fertility factors, which identifies barriers to fertility such as stress and nutrition, have been incorporated into the Bali retreats. The one-week Bali retreats are named in honor of the Hindu deity Ganesha, cherished for helping people overcome obstacles and achieve success.
“My work is all about helping couples to get pregnant and stay pregnant,” says Perry.
“At The Perry Centre our whole-of-life approach considers that fertility may be impacted by physiological, genetic, environmental and social factors."
“Specifically our research shows that stress is a major contributor to fertility problems and I know of no better place than among Bali’s flowing rivers and fertile fields for couples to unwind and learn new and enduring skills for conception.”
“Bali’s rural environment is the best I have found in the world for helping people to de-stress, refresh and reconnect.”
The Ganesha Fertility Retreats are designed for couples that want to maximize their chance of achieving pregnancy naturally; those who have tried and have not succeeded; and couples who are about to undergo treatments such as IVF.
A key to Perry’s approach is personalized assessment and consultation for customized program development to give each individual couple the best opportunity for conception.
World Health Organization data suggests one in every four couples is affected by fertility issues, a figure Perry believes could be as high as 30%.
He says it’s no longer appropriate for couples trying to have a baby just to be advised to “go away and keep trying as these things take time. There are reasons for infertility and once we establish them we are well on the way to solving a couple’s fertility puzzle. Many couples who come to me have not received sound assessment and advice on basic influencers such as timing,” he says.
But Perry says general practitioners are now realizing that infertility is a specialist field requiring specialist skills and treatment.
“I am finding that more GPs are referring their infertility patients to specialists like me, but it’s still unacceptable that many couples are not getting the attention and advice they need to start or grow their families.”
The 7-day retreats offer personalized programming with Dr Alex Perry and seminars & activities focused on nutrition & diet, physiology, massage & relaxation.
Places are limited to only 10-12 couples per retreat held at the Ananda Cottages & Spa at Ubud www.anandaubud.com.
Retreat dates for 2014 are:
January 19 – January 26
January 26 – February 2
February 16 – February 23
February 23 – March 2
September 27 – October 4
October 4 – October 11
October 11 – October 18
November 4 – November 9 (short retreat)
November 9 – November 16
November 16 – Novemer 23
November 23 – November 30.
Fore more information on www.ganeshafertilityretreats.com or [Email] .
Java Jazz Invades Bali
Top Acts Including Earth, Wind & Fire Experience to Perform In Bali March 5-8, 2014 at Bali Live International Festival
Java Jazz – an internationally established annual stop on the world circuit of Jazz Festivals is expanding, bringing top-named acts to the Bali Live International Festival set to take place March 5-8, 2014, right after the Jakarta Jazz Festival.
Performances will take place at a number of venues across Bali with the highlight of Bali Live International Festival taking place on Saturday, March 8 from 2:00pm- 11:00 pm. The venue is Taman Bhagawan – a gorgeous oceanfront villa on Tanjung Benoa near Nusa Dua,
The artists confirmed to perform in Bali at Taman Bhagawan are:
Earth Wind & Fire Experience featuring Al McKay
Estaire Godinez featuring Stokley Williams
D Notes Harris & Robert Turner
Jim Larkin & The Saucy Soul Band
Rio Sidik Quartet
Nancy Ponto & The Soul Brothers
20% early bird discounts are available until February 15, 2014 from the following prices:
Standard Admission: Rp. 1,000,000
Expatriates with Kita: Rp. 750,000
Indonesian Citizens Rp. 500,000
Proof of KITAS or Indonesian nationality must be shown at the door.
Tickets are also available at the door. Organizers insist show will go on, rain or shine.
Tickets are available at Taman Bhagawan Bali, telephone +62-0361-776 555 or [E-mail]
Mister, Money, Please
Denpasar Officials Campaigns to Stop People from Giving Money to Roadside Beggars
The Social Work and Manpower Agency for the municipality of Denpasar have installed banners at key intersections across South Bali asking the public and island visitors not to give hand outs to street side beggars.
Erwin Suryadarma Sena who heads Denpasar’s Manpower Agency told NusaBali, “Entering 2014 we will continue to control beggars by installing banners and billboards against their activities.” Suryadarma said the campaign was necessary to remove beggars from Bali’s streets and in order avoid creating a coming generation with a lazy mentality.”
The Social Works Agency in 2013 rounded and returned to their home areas 53 Javanese beggars hailing from Bondowoso (20), Jember (4), Banyuwangi (18), Madura (3), Blitar (1), Sitobondo (6) and Lumajang (1). Balineses beggars sent back to their home villages totaled 149 originating from Munti Gunung (54), Pedahan (87) and Trunyan in Kintamani (8).
The theme of many of the banners implores the public not to destroy the mentality of the young with money.
After a While, Crocodile
2-Meter Crocodile Captured Near Mas, Ubud
A 2-meter long crocodile that has frightened villagers near Ubud has been rounded up and sent to a new home at the Bali Zoo in Singapadu.
Villagers fishing, bathing and washing in the Wasan River near Banjar Juga at Mas near Ubud were shocked by the occasional appearance of a 2-meter long crocodile.
After a search over several days by villagers and Animal Welfare Officers, the crocodile was traced to a small cave. The reptile cave was broken open allowing its capture and removal to its new home at the Bali Zoo.
Officials are baffled by the origins of the sole reptile believed to have once been the pet of a villager who allowed its release into the river.
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