A Russian influencer has become the subject of outrage in Bali and throughout Indonesia thanks to his reckless social media stunt, in which he filmed himself launching off a dock in Bali on a motorcycle and plunging into the ocean, with local police saying that they may launch an investigation into the matter.
Last week, the Russian influencer uploaded two videos on Instagram, which showed a stunt he pulled with a female friend in Tanah Ampo Port in Bali’s Karangasem regency. The videos showed him driving a motorcycle with his friend standing with one foot up on the backseat, as he sped up and plunged the bike into the water.
The videos quickly made their rounds across various social media platforms, sparking backlash among most viewers. They criticized the influencer, describing his stunt as both reckless and disrespectful, and further noted the risk of polluting the ocean.
The influencer, who has over 4.8 million followers on Instagram, has now set his account to private. In a comment responding to Balinese designer and politician Niluh Djelantik calling him out, he also explained that he’s apologized to the residents of Bali through Instagram and said that the posts have been deleted.
“I bought the bike, not rented. And we got it out of the ocean 30 minutes after it got there, nothing came out of there, it is not broken. We present it to the locals, they are already using it,” part of the comment reads, where he later noted that he also does charity work to help kids in Bali.
Niluh, for her part, said that even though he has removed the bike from the ocean, he still broke laws in Indonesia.
“You didn’t think of the outcome when you made this video […] Time for you to learn that Indonesian people will unite when a person like you [comes] to our country and disrespect our culture,” Niluh wrote on Instagram.
Indonesia’s environmental protection law prohibits illegal dumping of waste into the environment, and violators could face up to three years in prison and a fine of IDR3 billion (US$213,000).
Tanah Ampo Port is actually closed to the public as it is no longer operational, and police said this morning that they have chided the regional government for allowing members of the public to access the location.
Karangasem Police Chief Ni Nyoman Suartini said that the motorbike was indeed given to a local fisherman, and police have since seized the vehicle for evidence in the ongoing investigation. Suartini added that they are working together with Immigration and officials in Karangasem regency in the case.
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