Neil Bantleman surrenders to Indonesian authorities

Canadian schoolteacher Neil Bantleman has turned himself in to Indonesian custody, after the country’s supreme court overturned his acquittal on charges that he and an Indonesian teacher allegedly abused three children.

See Full Article

Neil Bantleman and Ferdinant Tjiong had been sentenced to 10 years in prison last April. Both appealed to the country's High Court which acquitted them in August.

The pair had their acquittal overturned on Wednesday.

Chandra Saptaji, head of the general crime section at the South Jakarta Prosecutors' Office, said Bantleman, who was in Bali, surrendered after communicating with authorities through the Canadian Embassy.

"I can say that he was co-operative," Saptaji told The Associated Press. "He took the initiative by flying back to Jakarta escorted by officials from the embassy and the prosecutors' office.

Bantleman was admitted to Cipinang Prison, the same prison in Jakarta where Tjiong was taken into custody on Thursday.

The reversal has stunned Bantleman's family members.

Guy Bantleman, Neil's brother, said Thursday morning that heading into the verdict the family felt confident in the outcome but the new decision has placed more stress on them.

"They're both tired, they both thought that we're very close to the end of this process and they'd be back in Canada in the coming weeks," he told CTV News Channel on Thursday.

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion said in a statement Thursday morning that the Canadian government is "deeply dismayed and shocked" by the Supreme Court's decision.

“This decision is unjust, given the many grave irregularities throughout the various proceedings in this case and the fact that all evidence presented by the defence has systematically been rejected. Mr. Bantleman and Mr. Tjiong were not provided the opportunity to demonstrate their innocence," Dion said. "Despite Canada’s repeated calls for due process, this case was not handled in a fair and transparent manner."

Dion said the outcome of the case has "serious implications" for Indonesia's reputation as a safe place for Canadians to work and travel.

He added that Canada would continue to raise Bantleman’s case at the highest levels while Canadian officials provide him with consular assistance.

Under Indonesian law, both Bantleman and Tijong still could challenge the sentence by filing for judicial review by the Supreme Court if they have new evidence.

Both Bantleman and Tijong worked at the Jakarta International School, which is now called the Jakarta Intercultural School.

The 2,400 students in the school include children of foreign diplomats and expatriates from about 60 countries along with Indonesia's elite.

The school's principal and a number of other teachers have said they believe Bantleman is innocent.

Last December, five janitors at the school who were arrested in the same case were sentenced to up to eight years in jail. Police said a sixth suspect in that group died of suicide.

With files from the Associated Press


Latest Canada & World News

  • Okla. police continue hunt for man accused of killing relatives, filming crime spree

    World News CTV News
    GRAPHIC CONTENT warning: Some of the details in this story are disturbing. OKLAHOMA CITY -- Authorities have spent more than 24 hours seeking a man they say posted live videos to social media while running from police during a violent crime spree that included shooting two police officers, armed car thefts and killing his aunt and uncle, apparently attempting to sever their heads. Source
  • Getting North Korea to give up nukes a 'lost cause,' U.S. intel chief says

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- National Intelligence director James Clapper said Tuesday that the U.S. goal of persuading North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons is probably a "lost cause" and the best hope is to cap its capability. Source
  • Advocacy group calls on B.C. to release provincewide stats on police-dog bites

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER - A month after a bystander was mistakenly mauled by a Vancouver police dog, a legal advocacy group is calling on the provincial government to release newly gathered numbers outlining how many people are being bitten in British Columbia. Source
  • Trump miracle - on ice?

    World News Toronto Sun
    Donald Trump needs a miracle to get back into the U.S. presidential race — and the Democrats have outlawed miracles. Forgive me for borrowing from the classic flick Casablanca, but: “Well, Donald, we’ll always have Apprentice.” Only a Vegas drunk would bet on Trump beating Hillary Clinton and her Machiavellian machine on Nov. Source
  • 'I couldn't believe it's real': Residents of Woodstock, Ont., nursing home stunned by murder charges

    Canada News CBC News
    They are rattled and scared, but mostly the Woodstock, Ont., residents of Caressant Care Nursing and Retirement Home are in disbelief that a former nurse has been accused of murdering eight patients — seven of them in their very own facility. Source
  • 'I couldn't believe it's real': Residents of Woodstock, Ont., facility stunned by murder charges

    Canada News CBC News
    They are rattled and scared, but mostly the Woodstock, Ont., residents of Caressant Care Nursing and Retirement Home are in disbelief that a former nurse has been accused of murdering eight patients — seven of them in their very own facility. Source
  • 5 questions about British Airways Flight 286 emergency landing in Vancouver

    Canada News CBC News
    Hundreds of passengers were stranded at Vancouver International Airport today, scrambling for flights after their British Airways plane to London made an emergency landing late Monday night. We know that 22 cabin crew and three pilots from the plane went to hospitals in the Vancouver area and were released shortly after. Source
  • Three Canadians to appear in Australian court on drug-smuggling charges

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    MONTREAL — The three Canadian cruise ship passengers charged in Australia with drug smuggling are scheduled to appear in a Sydney courtroom Wednesday. Andre Tamine, 64, Isabelle Lagace, 28, and Melina Roberge, 23, were arrested in late August after the MS Sea Princess, operated by California-based Princess Cruises, berthed in the Australian metropolis. Source
  • Two kids were lucky to survive accident at Australia theme park, police say

    World News CTV News
    SYDNEY, Australia - Two young children are fortunate to be alive, police said Wednesday, after they were thrown clear and survived an accident that killed four people on a river rapids ride at a popular theme park in Australia. Source
  • U.S. says alleged Bali bombing figure to stay at Guantanamo

    World News CTV News
    MIAMI -- A U.S. government review board has rejected the release of the alleged Southeastern Asian terrorist leader known as Hambali from the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The Periodic Review Board said in a short statement released Tuesday that Hambali continues to be a "significant threat to the security of the United States. Source