A British national who has earned viral notoriety for slapping an Indonesian immigration officer across the face in Bali is being detained in the island’s airport and faces criminal charges, according to the Directorate General of Immigration.
Things got out of hand on Saturday when the woman, identified by her initials, AT, did not react calmly when she was told she would have to pay thousands of dollars in fees when she tried to depart from Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport after overstaying her visa. It expired almost six months ago on Feb. 18, 2018.
Thanks to technology and social media the whole slap incident was captured on camera and has blown up across the net.
At this point, the normal procedure would be to deport the woman, but she needs to undergo legal proceedings for the “assault,” says Directorate General of Immigration head spokesman Agung Sampurno.
“We want to have a deterrent effect on foreigners like this. If you just repatriate her, there will be no deterrent effect,” Sampurno told MetroTV.
“Proceedings with police must be resolved, even though, she eventually will be deported,” he explained.
AT is being held at the Police Port Security Unit (KP3) detention center at Ngurah Rai Airport, with apparently nothing to do but wait for her pending charges to be pressed.
The overstay fee in Bali is US$25 per day. When told she would have to pay that much, AT became emotional, starting cussing out immigration officers, and then slapped Ardiansyah, the officer who was on duty at the time.
The slap came when she tried to take her passport back from Aridansyah, but he pulled it away, according to Bisri Musa, head of Landing and Entrance Permits at Ngurah Rai Immigration.
“But AT did not accept that and even berated Ardiansyah, our officer when trying to seize back her passport. When she wanted to take it, she pulled his hand and hit him,” Musa told waspada.co.id on Wednesday.
AT spent one night being held at the Ngurah Rai Airport Immigration office before she was handed over the Airport Police on Sunday, Musa said.