Bali man arrested for pawning 14 rental cars to fuel cockfighting habit

Cockfighting in Ubud. Photo: Flickr/Hendrik Wieduwilt

South Denpasar Police have arrested a Tabanan resident for pawning 14 rented cars, allegedly to pay for his cockfighting habit.

According to an article in Kumparan, the man had hired the vehicles in September of last year and had initially sub-rented them to tourists at higher prices. But as his gambling addiction intensified, so too did his need for money.

The man, identified as I Wayan Eka Antara by Bali Post, is reported to have pawned the vehicles to several different people at prices ranging between IDR20 million (US$1413) to IDR25 million (US$1767).

Antara’s scheme was uncovered when the rental period expired and the cars still hadn’t been returned. The case was reported to police and, according to a report by Kumparan, the perpetrator was arrested in his Tabanan home on Sunday.

Police managed to secure all 14 cars, some of which had reportedly been tracked down as far as Singaraja and Gilimanuk on the north coast of Bali.

Antara faces charges of criminal embezzlement with a threat of four years imprisonment.

Known as “tajen” in Bali, cockfighting is a cruel and widespread practice involving physical bouts between roosters fitted with sharp spurs around their legs. It’s not uncommon for spectators to bet on winners, despite gambling being illegal in Indonesia.

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