Ten Indonesians Return Home After Ambassador’s Intervention

Following the intervention of Indonesia’s ambassador to Cambodia last week, 10 Indonesian nationals left the country Sunday after being released by police in Kandal province, where they were being held over a $161,000 theft at a local casino, an embassy official said.

Muhsinin Dolisada, a first secretary at the Indonesian Embassy in Phnom Penh, said provincial police handed the 10 Indonesians over to the embassy on Saturday.

“Now this afternoon they are going to return to Indonesia,” he said, adding that their plane was set to depart at about 3:30 p.m.

The Indonesians were part of a group of 17 employed by the Grand Dragon Resort in Kandal’s Koh Thom district.

According to the embassy, one of the Indonesians, Jefry Sun, fled the casino around May 9 after allegedly embezzling about $161,000 worth of credit used for online gambling.

The embassy claims the casino then illegally detained the remaining 16 workers and tortured three of them between May 11 and 16.

On May 16, the group was handed over to provincial police, who housed them at a guesthouse in Takhmao City while the provincial court investigated the casino’s claims that the group was involved in the theft.

Mr. Dolisada said a meeting between Indonesian Ambassador Pitono Purnomo and officials at the Foreign Affairs Ministry last week secured the release.

“The Foreign Ministry called us and we went directly to Kandal to collect the 10,” he said.

Mr. Sun has been held at the embassy for about two weeks after turning himself in and admitting to the theft.

Lim Sokuntha, the prosecutor in charge of the case, said his investigation was ongoing.

“We received evidence from the company and we are in the process of looking into this evidence,” he said.

Ros Sitha, a lawyer representing Grand Dragon Resort, said the embassy should not have gotten involved.

“The embassy protected the perpetrators,” he said.

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