More people arrested over umrah scams in South Sulawesi
The Jakarta Post
Police have arrested a travel agency executive in what appears to be the latest in a string of umrah (minor haj) scams.
Mahditiara Syafruddin is the executive director of PT Global Inspira Indonesia, a travel agency that offers pilgrimage packages.
She was arrested in Medan, North Sumatra, on Sunday. Her arrest follows that of her husband, Edwin Djabbar, the company’s executive commissioner.
They have been arrested for fraud after reportedly failing to fly out 6,300 aspiring pilgrims.
The estimated losses suffered by the victims total Rp 100 billion (US$7 million).
South Sulawesi Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. Dicky Sondani said on Tuesday that the two would be charged with fraud and embezzlement, which carries a minimum prison sentence of five years.
Police have investigated the case since November 2017.
“Edwin has been detained since [November], while Mahditiara moved cities to avoid arrest but was eventually arrested on Sunday in Medan before being taken to Makassar,” Dicky said.
Edwin claimed bankruptcy as the reason for failing to send the aspiring pilgrims on the trip.
The company has operated since 2010 and offered umrah trips at bargain prices.
Meanwhile, Resor Barru Police in South Sulawesi have arrested Lukman Jamaluddin, owner of the PT Safa Marwah Aulia Utama travel agency, and named him a suspect in another alleged umrah scam. At least 400 people have reportedly fallen victim to his travel agency. (swd)
- Anger at Singapore ads offering Indonesian maids for sale
- US sanctions Chinese military unit for buying Russian jets, missiles
- Jokowi imposes moratorium on palm oil plantations
- Creator of 3-D printed guns flies to Taiwan amid US sex assault accusation
- Balinale set to return with award-winning movies, guests
- US court rules for Colorado 'intersex' veteran denied passport
- Here are 10 of the most populated cities in the world
- Malaysia ex-PM faces 21 new charges over 1MDB scandal
- Groups welcome Jokowi’s palm plantation moratorium
- Tourism Ministry declares five dishes national food