Disgraced Garuda Indonesia CEO I Gusti Ngurah Askhara AKA Ari Askhara has been sentenced to one year in prison for smuggling Brompton bikes and Harley Davidson parts using the flag carrier’s plane.
“The convicted I Gusti Ngurah Askhara is being handed a one-year sentence and fined IDR300 million (US$21,060),” judge Nelson Panjaitan of the Tangerang District Court said during Ari’s sentencing hearing yesterday.
The sentence was in line with what case prosecutors demanded as punishment for Ari.
Askhara was sacked from his post as Garuda CEO in late 2019 upon the discovery of Harley Davidson parts and Brompton folding bicycles smuggled on board an Airbus A330-900 that was delivered to Garuda from France in November. An audit into the matter showed that the smuggled goods belonged to Ari, who intended to avoid steep luxury goods tax on his hobbies.
Askhara said he may consider appealing against the sentence.
Garuda Indonesia is in the midst of a debt restructuring plan to avoid the very real possibility of going bankrupt due to years of inefficiency and corruption by officials. Among the drastic measures the flag carrier has taken include offering early termination to employees.