Customs officers in Bali intercepted 24 human skulls that were being sent from the Indonesian island on to the Netherlands.
The skulls were stopped in two shipments, the first on Jan. 11, the second on Jan. 18.
“The 24 human skulls were to be sent to the Netherlands and were stopped by Ngurah Rai Customs. They were stopped in two instances by the Post Office,” head of Ngurah Rai Customs office Himawan Indarjono said in Bali on Friday, as quoted by Detik.
“From the two actions, we got a total of four crates containing 24 human skulls,” explained Himawan.
The packages aroused the suspicions of Customs officers when going through an x-ray.
No, it doesn’t seem we have a mass murderer on hand. The skulls are estimated to be quite old, believed to be cultural relics, coming from either Kalimantan or Papua, according to Helly Siti Halimah, Pos Indonesia region VIII Bali-Nusra director.
“There were artistic carvings on the skulls, as well as something for a sculpture. It’s possible that they belonged to the Dayak tribe in Kalimantan or came from Papua,” said Halimah.
The skulls have been handed over to the Bali Cultural Heritage Preservation Department for further examination so their origins and age can be more accurately pinned down.
The sender, of the skulls, who has been identified as an Indonesian national with the initial “R” and has an address in Kuta, is being investigated by the authorities, says Himawan.