News World Australian businessman arrested in Indonesia: reports

Australian businessman arrested in Indonesia: reports

Patrick Alexander was arrested on Saturday.
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Indonesian police have reportedly arrested an Australian businessman involved in disputes over a coal project and a Bali villa.

The Bali Tribune reported on Wednesday that Patrick Alexander was arrested in Jakarta on Saturday.

In 2013, Mr Alexander, a private equity investor and former second secretary at the Australian Embassy in Jakarta, had denied any wrongdoing in regards to an allegation of embezzlement over a failed coal project in Sumatra.

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He was placed in Indonesian custody after a German man linked with his failed Bengkulu Coal Ltd project filed a complaint against him.

Indonesian police are questioning the man.
Indonesian police are questioning the man. Photo: Twitter

While he denied wrongdoing, there were counter-claims that Indonesian police had demanded a $US1.3 million ($A1.76 million) “mediation” payment to settle the dispute over a $US500,000 debt.

On Wednesday, Indonesian media reported police officers attending Mr Alexander’s home in the Bintaro area of Jakarta did not have a warrant.

His wife, Ara, and lawyer described the police action as a “kidnapping” and were seeking details of charges.

Mr Alexander’s son Nick has denied his father has done anything wrong.

Mr Alexander was also known to be in a dispute with Indonesian model and actor Jeremy Thomas.

The Bali Tribune said Mr Thomas had been entangled in a property dispute over an Ubud villa dating back to October 2014.

The actor alleges Mr Alexander, the former owner of the villa, scammed him, the online publisher reported.

Mr Alexander had used the name of an Indonesian proxy to hold the villa, because foreigners can’t hold foreign assets in their own names.

Nick Alexander says he hopes for a speedy resolution to his father’s situation.

“We are very concerned about this development,” he said in a statement.

“We are certain he has done nothing wrong and hope the matter can be resolved fairly and as soon as possible.

“The villa in question was built by our family in 2001 and it has not been sold by our family at any time.”

A spokeswoman for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade told AAP on Wednesday: “We are aware of the arrest of an Australian man in Indonesia and we will make a consular visit to him as soon as local authorities permit.”

She declined to provide any further information for privacy reasons.

Australian Federal Police declined to comment as it was a matter for DFAT.

Prior brush with the law

Son, Nick Alexander.
Son, Nick Alexander. Photo: ABC

In June, 2013, Mr Alexander was detained in Indonesia for more than three months after a business deal turned sour, despite a court ruling that his ongoing detention was illegal, the ABC reported.

He blamed a “corrupt and abusive system” for his plight.

In March that year, a disgruntled investor accused Mr Alexander of embezzlement and he ended up in jail.

“This is a corrupt and abusive system. It’s a corrupt and abusive country and it’s time it was exposed to the world,” Mr Alexander told ABC’s 7.30 program at the time.

After 92 days behind bars, Mr Alexander sued the police for improper detention.

Nick Alexander said his father’s Indonesian wife, Ara, had also been caught up in the drama.

“There was a commercial dispute between him and a former investor. The former investor was very angry about the business – one of his businesses failing,” Nick told the 7.30 program during an interview in June 2013.

with AAP

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