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Aceh authorities detain four suspects in Rohingya refugee smuggling case

Jakarta Globe - April 3, 2024

Taufik Kelana, Aceh – Four suspects involved in smuggling 75 Rohingya refugees into the waters of West Aceh have been arrested by the West Aceh District Police. Currently, they are awaiting legal proceedings.

According to West Aceh District Police Chief Andi Kirana, the detainees are local fishermen from Aceh. They have been identified as HS, 33, M, 46, E, 49, residents of South Aceh, and HI, 25, a resident of Southwest Aceh.

"These individuals were captured at different locations, while four other perpetrators remain at large," Andi said on Tuesday.

The four fugitives listed as wanted are S, 40, from Idie Rayeuk, East Aceh, K,40, from Labuhan Haji, South Aceh, R, 40, from Drien Kipal Village, Tangan-Tangan Subdistrict, Southwest Aceh, and MK, 45, from Lembah Sabil, Southwest Aceh.

Earlier, dozens of Rohingya people in West Aceh encountered a shipwreck in the area's waters. Originating from Bangladesh with Malaysia as their intended destination, they transited through Aceh waters.

The plan involved picking up the immigrants in Sabang waters and transporting them to Ujung Raja, Nagan Raya. From there, they would be transported by truck to Tanjung Balai, North Sumatra, for smuggling into Tanjung Selangor, Malaysia. Each Rohingya individual paid Rp 5 million or around $300.

"This smuggling operation purportedly enlisted the help of several Acehnese fishermen," said Andi.

The four suspects face charges under immigration laws and Article 55 of the Indonesian Criminal Code, with a maximum prison sentence of 15 years.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/aceh-authorities-detain-four-suspects-in-rohingya-refugee-smuggling-cas