- Philip Jacobson, an award-winning editor for the environmental science news outlet Mongabay, has been transferred from the Palangkaraya Class II detention center to ‘city detention’ in Palangkaraya.
- Jacobson was arrested and incarcerated on January 21 for an alleged visa violation.
- The story is developing.
“Mongabay staffer Philip Jacobson was just moved from prison to ‘city detention’ in Palangkaraya,” said Mongabay Founder and CEO Rhett A. Butler on January 24, 2020. “We are grateful that authorities have made this accommodation and remain hopeful that Phil’s case can be treated as an administrative matter rather than a criminal one. We thank everyone for their continued support.”
Philip Jacobson, an award-winning editor for the environmental science news outlet Mongabay, has been transferred from the Palangkaraya Class II detention center to ‘city detention’ in Palangkaraya. Jacobson was arrested and incarcerated on January 21 for an alleged visa violation.
Jacobson, 30, was first detained on December 17, 2019 after attending a hearing between the Central Kalimantan parliament and the local chapter of the Indigenous Peoples Alliance of the Archipelago (AMAN), Indonesia’s largest indigenous rights advocacy group.
He had travelled to the city shortly after entering Indonesia on a business visa for a series of meetings. The day he was due to leave, immigration authorities seized his passport, interrogated him for four hours and ordered him to remain in the city pending their investigation.
On January 21, more than a month later, Jacobson was formally arrested and taken into custody. He was informed that he faces charges of violating the 2011 immigration law and a prison sentence of up to five years.
Jacobson was held at Palangkaraya Class II detention center in a cell with five others. During his detention, he said we was treated well.
On January 24, after meeting with U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Joseph R. Donovan, the Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs (Kemenko Polhukam) Mohammad Mahfud MD said he would order Jacobson to be deported from Indonesia “immediately.”
“We are encouraged by the coordinating minister’s statement today,” said Mongabay’s Butler. “We’ve been hoping for quick resolution to this matter.”
Header image: Philip Jacobson shortly after his release from the Palangkaraya Class II detention center on January 24, 2020.