On March 15, 2023, Indonesian authorities announced the arrest of four foreigners, including three Nigerians, for allegedly attempting to smuggle drugs into the country.
According to police spokesperson Trunoyudo Wisnu Andika, the Nigerian nationals were arrested separately between January and March at Soekarno-Hatta international airport in Jakarta and several apartments in the capital.
One of the arrested Nigerians allegedly swallowed dozens of capsules containing more than a kilogram (2.2 pounds) of methamphetamine.
Indonesia is a major Southeast Asian drug trafficking hub with strict drug laws, with convicted smugglers are sometimes executed by firing squad.
According to Gatot Sugeng Wibowo, chief of customs at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, officers arrested Malachi Onyekachukwu Umanu, a Nigerian who arrived at the airport from Ethiopia on March 5 with no suitcase or bag.
Officers investigated his suspicious behavior, and an X-ray revealed 64 capsules inside his stomach. According to Wibowo, authorities were able to force all of the capsules, which contained a total of 1.07 kilograms (2.3 pounds) of crystal methamphetamine, out of his stomach in three days.
A Brazilian man, Gustavo Pinto da Silveira, was also arrested at the airport shortly after he arrived from Rio de Janeiro in early January, carrying a backpack, suitcase, and surfboard. He initially refused to allow officers to test the contents of his luggage for liquids.
Officers were compelled to investigate the substance, which was stored in six toiletry bottles and had a strong odor. The fluid was 2 liters (67.6 ounces) of liquid cocaine, according to lab tests. According to police, the amount was $1.3 million.
Police also apprehended two other Nigerian nationals, as well as an Indonesian man and woman, who attempted to smuggle 1.04 kilograms (2.2 pounds) of crystal meth from India through a post office in Jakarta wrapped in lace fabric.
Mukti Juharsa, the capital’s police director of drug investigations, He stated that the suspects would face a minimum of five years in prison and a death sentence under Indonesia’s strict narcotics law.