Photos of a chopped up dolphin in Bali gone viral have prompted a police investigation looking into the animal’s death.
Two men have been taken into custody in the island’s eastern regency of Karangasem, but no suspects have been offically declared yet, Bali Police’s Water Division Dir. Comr. Sukandar told Detik on Tuesday.
“No one has been named as a suspect, because the case has not yet been reviewed by expert witnesses,” Sukandar said.
One of the expert witnesses to be called on to analyze the case is a team from the Bali Natural Resources Conservation Center (BKSDA).
“We are coordinating with Bali Police to give expert information, so on Thursday, we will have our officers go to Bali Water Police to give expert analysis,” head of BKSDA Bali, I Ketut Catur Marbawa told Detik.
Marbawa was reluctant to provide any additional information about the status of the alleged perpetrators.
“I do not know whether (the perpetrators) were arrested because it’s under the authority of Bali Water Police,” Marbawa said.
It was previously reported that Wayan Mudiana, 44, and I Nyoman Gomboh, 52, were the two men arrested.
Police were alerted to the case after a Facebook post written by ‘Tut Tony,’ a villager from Darmawinangun, Kubu, went viral on March 15.
The Facebook post showed graphic pictures of a bloodied and butchered dolphin, captioned in Balinese with the words, “invited to cut up some dolphin.”
Police say they have confiscated a machete, oil from the dolphin, and fried dolphin meat, as evidence in the case.
It’s understood that the dolphin was killed on March 13, fished by I Nyoman Gomboh while at sea, according to a report by Kompas.
Gomboh then allegedly took the dolphin to land and brought it to be cooked by his friend Mudiana.
“Based on the results of a temporary investigation, the butcher was Wayan Mudiana and the perpetrator who uploaded the phots on Facebook is the child of Wayan Mudiana, who is 13 years old,” Marbawa said.
But since his post went viral, Tut Tony has removed the “offensive post”, apologized, and has been insistent that he “found the dolphin already dead” on the beach and was only using its parts for medicine.
In Indonesia, dolphins are a protected species by Law no. 5 of 1990 on the Conservation of Natural Resources and Ecosystems and PP No. 7 of 1999 on the Preservation of Animal and Plant Species, according to Marbawa.
“The perpetrators’ alibi is that they slaughtered the dolphin because they did not know that there is a law regulating the animal’s protection,” Marbawa said, showing a discrepancy between what’s been said by Mudiana and his son on Facebook.