A Melbourne nightclub promoter and manager have both been jailed after police raids on Bali’s Lost City nightclub last year.
Two Australians have been found guilty of misusing cocaine and jailed for up to a year in Bali, after they were arrested in police raids on the Lost City nightclub last year and later returned positive urine tests.
Melbourne nightclub promoter William Cabantog, 36, was sentenced to one year behind bars and David Van Iersel, 38, was jailed for nine months in the Denpasar District Court.
They were found in possession of 1.12 grams of cocaine hidden in the pockets of Cabantog’s jeans, worth about $300, and a set of scales.
The pair had faced up to 12 years behind bars but their sentences were reduced after prosecutor Ni Made Ayu Citra Maya Sari agreed the pair were “victims of the drug trade” and recommended 14 months for Van Iersel and 18 months for Cabantog.
She also requested that time already served be taken into account – prompting both men to weep before the court – and has seven days to appeal the decision. Police raids on the Lost City nightclub – where Van Iersel was the manager and Cabantog worked as a hospitality consultant – and nearby homes at the popular surf beach of Canggu were conducted on July 19 last year.
Both men expressed regret and have since apologised to the Indonesian people while a court-appointed expert said the pair were heavily dependent on drugs and recommended six months rehabilitation in lieu of jail time.
They had told the court they had come to Bali to stop using drugs. The court heard that Van Iersel was “highly addicted” and had begun using drugs when he was 18 after being offered narcotics by a friend at a party.
Cabantog told the court he had used cocaine since he was 20. Observers said the pair had got off lightly given a recent crackdown announced by Indonesian President Joko Widodo who was initially elected in 2014 on a strong platform of zero tolerance towards narcotics.
The courts have recently taken a sterner view of foreigners abusing drugs. Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, ringleaders of the Bali Nine drug ring, spent a decade on death row before their execution in 2015. Another Australian, Ryan Scott Williams, was jailed in August last year for five years for possession of 38.72 grams of home-made cocaine. State prosecutors had only asked for 15 months.