Three alleged smugglers arrested

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THREE people have been arrested in West Sepik for attempting to smuggle about K400,000 worth of vanilla and shark fins into Indonesia, West Sepik police commander Chief Insp Moses Ibsagi says.
“They were arrested on Sunday in Vanimo after arriving from East Sepik on a commercial flight,” he said.
“They are now been detained at the police station.”
Insp Ibsagi said the suspects were regular traders between East Sepik and Jayapura and continued trading even after the border was closed on Jan 28.
“These suspects have been disobeying the Covid-19 state of emergency and secretly continuing to cross the PNG-Indonesian border to continue their trade.”
Insp Ibsagi said police suspected the trio to have a network between East and West Sepik and Jayapura and were constantly informed on the movement of the Joint Security Task Force members. “They have been sneaking in and out of Jayapura without being caught,” he said.


  • Technically they haven’t entered Jayapura yet to be charged for smuggling – has there been a ban on transportation of vanilla and shark fin between provinces in the country – in this case between the sepik provinces or between PNG and Indonesia/Jayapura.

    They may have the intentions but they have not been caught in the act transporting the produce into Jayapura. The medium of transport between East and West Sepik they took was approved – uplifting of travel ban within and between provinces. Technically speaking the police have no case here unless they can prove otherwise.

    • Correct me if I am wrong but the National Government has banned international travels unless strict conditions are met. This ban includes border crossing at the PNG-Indonesian border. The main reason behind this restriction on the border movement is to prevent the spread of COVID-19 as there are confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Jayapura.
      If our country three countrymen were going to head to Jayapura/Indonesia without complying with the strict COVID-19 protocols, it is unlawful. Even though they are yet to commit the offence (of crossing international boundary without proper authorisation under COVID-19 SOE), the fact that there is “intention” to do so is a crime in itself (attempting to commit an offence). Lets just hope that the three had no intention of crossing the border.
      Tintin tasol.

  • This are simple businessmen trying to survive doing legitimate business ,just give back their vanilla and stop your judgement they haven’t been to a court yet ,technically they haven’t crossedover the border yet ,so are you going to arrest them for being in vanimo with a bag full of vanilla bean ??? and not in action crossing over the border ,what about the PMV buses in Lae overloading PMV and collecting K3 busfare from top Town to Bumayong ,why cant they be arrested too????

  • They are trying to meet their needs through this difficult times. What about the corrupted MPs and government beaurocrats who are stealing large amount of money and are living freely as if there is no law in the country.

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