Indonesian Men Publicly Flogged…for Gambling
The extreme punishment was inflicted on Dahlan Silitonga, 61, and Tjia Nyuk Hwa, 45 not for running an illegal backroom casino; or wagering with an offshore sportsbook; or any of the gambling offenses that might land you in hot water in other parts of the world. Sadly, Silitonga and Hwa received two dozen lashes for playing a children’s game at a local entertainment complex…the kind of game where you win tickets that can be exchanged for prizes or cash.
Unfortunately for the men, they both accepted cash and had the misfortune to live in the Indonesian province of Aceh, which has been bound by an extreme form of Islamic law since 2001. Both of the men in question are not Muslims, though whether that impacted their case is not known. Gambling, in all its forms is strictly forbidden under that local law.
Under the terms of the local legal system in Aceh, some members of the local population are given the choice of a lengthy jail term or a public flogging. Though it’s known whether Silitonga and Hwa were given any options in terms of what their punishment would be.
The punishment was doled out by a robed and masked man and performed in front of a jeering crowd of nearly 300, including a group of tourists from a nearby province, according to a report in the Guardian. Members of the crowd reportedly jeered the men while demanding that they show some remorse.
Banda Aceh’s mayor Aminullah Usman explained away the severe punishment saying, “This is to create a deterrent effect, in order for people not to repeat violations of (the)…law. We purposely do it in front of the public … so it won’t happen again.”