Australian journalist held for allegedly violating immigration law

Some journalists carried complete documents including recommendation letters from the foreign ministry for carrying out journalistic activities in Indonesia.
Cilacap, Central Java (ANTARA News) - Australian journalist Candace Sutton of Daily Mail was held for allegedly violating immigration law while covering preparations for the execution of death convicts in Nusakambangan, Central Java.

"We have held a Daily Mail journalist from Australia for not being in possession of any recommendation letter from the foreign ministry but only a visit visa," head of the Sub-Section of Information and Communication of the Immigration Office in Cilacap, Adithia P Barus, said here on Thursday.

He said so far, the journalist was being interrogated at the immigration office.

When asked about possible deportation of the journalist as had happened in case of those from Brazil and Peru who were also caught covering preparations for the execution of the first batch of death convicts on January 18, Barus said he was not in a position to confirm it.

He said it would all depend upon the result of the interrogation that would be presented to the Directorate General of Immigration in Jakarta.

"We do not want to act ahead as she is still under interrogation," he said.

On Wednesday evening, an immigration official came to the hotel where Candace Sutton was staying after receiving information that she had been carrying out journalistic activity while being on a visit visa.

Immigration officers were seen checking documents of a number of foreign journalists covering execution preparations at the Wijayapura pier ferry service.

Some journalists carried complete documents including recommendation letters from the foreign ministry for carrying out journalistic activities in Indonesia.

Before the first execution of foreign drug convicts on January 18, 2015, the Cilacap immigration office had held two foreign journalists for not having recommendations for conducting journalistic activities as required by the law.

The two journalists were Gomes Marcio from Brazil and Geovanne Percy Saima Guerrero from Peru. Both only had visit permits and were deported to their countries of origin after they were interrogated at the immigration office.(*)

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