Depok Immigration warns of foreign men dating Indonesian women so they can overstay visas and not work

Immigration officials in Depok, a satellite city of Jakarta, are warning the public about foreign men tricking Indonesian women by dating them. We know this because they posted an article to their official website with the headline “Waspadalah, Pria Bule Tipu Wanita Indonesia dengan Modus Ajak Kencan (“Beware, Foreign Men Deceive Indonesian Women Through The Method of Inviting Them to Date”) although it’s not so much an official press release as it is an official copy-paste of the same article from the news website

At any rate, the article says that Depok Immigration authorities say they recently arrested a 38-year-old Australian man with the initials WBR for overstaying his visa for over one year using the modus of dating an Indonesian woman to avoid their detection.

Officials said their investigation had led them to believe the suspect used this method “to reap personal benefits”, specifically staying in Indonesia while not working and letting his girlfriend pay for everything.

According to the immigration authorities, WBR had entered Indonesia on April 21, 2017, on a social and cultural visit visa that was extended with South Jakarta Immigration so that it would last until June 19, 2017. WBR allegedly had not been in contact with immigration until he was arrested by officers at an apartment in the Cinere area of Depok recently.

“So the concerned overstayed one year and four months. He is here living with his girlfriend who is an Indonesian citizen,” Depok Immigration spokesperson Newin Budiyanto told reporters yesterday.

Newin said their investigation found that WBR had deliberately dated the Indonesian woman “in order to fulfill his daily needs” as he did not have a permanent job while living here. He also said that immigration officials had seen several cases similar to his.

“In his home country he is a gardener. Now, after we have investigated, we have found more cases like this. So it turns out that this is a method that is often done by foreigners to violate the rules,” Newin said

Based on Depok Immigration’s data, Newin said they had found similar cases involving four foreigners including ones from Egypt, Yemen and Nigeria.

“The pattern of this modus operandi is the same, dating Indonesian citizens to pay for their living expenses while their residence permits expires. According to our investigation, just one foreigner can date up to three or four Indonesian women,” Newin added.

The immigration spokesperson said that WBR would be charged with violating Indonesian immigration law and could face deportation and detention.

He also noted that Indonesian citizens who helped foreigners illegally stay in the country by protecting them, hiding them or paying for their living expenses knowing that they did not have a valid visa could be sentenced with up to 3 months in prison or a maximum fine of IDR25 million (US$1,700).

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