British hotel owner arrested in Indonesia for alleged drug possession

24 May 2021, 16:24

Kenneth Daniel Kutsch and Francesco D'Alesio appeared at a news conference, following their arrest
Kenneth Daniel Kutsch (right) and Francesco D'Alesio appeared at a news conference, following their arrest. Picture: PA

By Emma Soteriou

A British hotel owner and an Italian tourist have been arrested for alleged possession of narcotics on the Indonesian island of Bali.

Kenneth Daniel Kutsch and his Indonesian partner - Ni Ketut Dewi Seniwati - were arrested in the car park of a restaurant on 7 May after residents reported sights of narcotic transactions.

Officers seized 223 grams (7.9 ounces) of marijuana from Kutsch and his partner, according to Badung police chief Roby Septiadi.

The pair appeared before journalists, dressed in orange, during a news conference.

They currently run a hotel business on the neighbouring island of Lombok.

Read more: PM rebuffs Sadiq Khan's plans to look into legalising cannabis in London

Read more: Olympian found guilty of attempting to smuggle £109m of cocaine

The hotel owner and his partner were caught in possession of marijuana
The hotel owner and his partner were caught in possession of marijuana. Picture: PA

Also appearing at the news conference was an Italian tourist named Francesco D'Alesio.

Police arrested him for possession of 94 grams (3.2 ounces) of cocaine. The amount was valued at 400 million rupiahs (£19,000) on 13 May.

D'Alesio was stranded in Bali due to the coronavirus pandemic and police said he actively took cocaine while he was there.

"We are still investigating the large amount of evidence we have obtained to determine the source of the narcotics," narcotic unit chief I Putu Budi Artama said.

Indonesia is known for its strict drug laws, which sometimes result in death by firing squad for those convicted.

At the moment, more than 150 people are on death row over there, most of them for drug crimes. Around a third are foreigners.

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