Australian arrested over illegal ownership of cafés in Universitas Indonesia campus

An Australian man, who was identified by the initials SG (60), was arrested Monday while he was opening up his two cafés in the Universitas Indonesia (UI) campus area.

Depok Immigration officers said they acted after receiving reports from locals about a foreigner they suspected of illegally owning the businesses.

“After we looked into it, it turned out that SG is the owner and he had opened his cafés for some time there. After investigation, it turned out the suspect’s immigration permit in his passport violated the law (in that it did not allow him to own a business in Indonesia),” said Depok Immigration Office Head Dudi Iskandar, as quoted by Vivanews yesterday.

“It was proven that he owned the business for a year.”

SG may face up to 5 years in prison or a fine of Rp 500 million for violating immigration laws.

According to Detik, SG last entered Indonesia on September 17, 2016 using a Visa on Arrival. Further information as to how he set up his businesses has not yet been revealed.

But SG’s case may be down to bad timing, if it was not the result of shady dealings with business licenses boards. In a bid to increase foreign investment in Indonesia, earlier this year the government opened up the possibility of full foreign ownership of businesses in certain sectors, including restaurants.

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