Bali Radio


The Cost of Safety for Susi

The Cost of Safety for Susi

The Cost of Safety for Susi


Susi Johnston, a middle aged writer living in Bali for over 20 years, became a victim of repeated attacks in her home not long after her husband passed away of cancer. The perpetrator goes about living a normal day to day live while Susi has to live under 24/7 guard of 6 police officers in her home.


What started this saga? What does it feel like to live under a protection of police officers in your home 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for over 600 days in a row? Susi Johnston paid a visit to our studio to tell all.


Susi and her husband purchased a property in Bali under a nominee’s name. This practice is quite common in Bali. Many property agents are offering this service, convincing countless foreigners to fall into their scheme. It is well acknowledged that Indonesia has strict law that forbids land ownership by foreigners. The “nominee” scheme is used as “loophole” by property agents to sell properties to westerners at top dollar prices, assuring them that they are the sole owner of their property, and the “Indonesian Nominee” is just a borrowed name. No matter what happen, the property is yours and you can all go about the rest of your lives owning villas in Bali with absolutely nothing to worry about. Who wouldn’t want that “Happily Ever After” scenario?


The fact of the matter is, this practice is illegal altogether. Susi and her husband found out in 2005 that the whole thing was a bust and immediately came into action. They filed to remove the nominee’s name and change the documents to follow the proper and legal manner of. They filed for Hak Pakai, which is a “Right to Use” the land. The nominee was well aware of this and at the time seemed to have no problem. While the paperwork was still in process, Susi’s husband died of cancer. All hell breaks loose not long after.


On the 5th of February 2013, Tety Carolina, the nominee of the property, along with her associates, sent over 50 hired thugs to remove Susi Johnston off her property and take over ownership. They broke in by destroying entrance doors, smashing things, verbally assaulted her, all in attempt to threaten her enough to make her leave her property so Tety Carolina can take over. She didn’t leave. Two follow up attacks, each time worse than the previous, continued over the period of a week. No one was arrested despite the fact that she filed a report to the police.


After the last - and worst - attack towards her and her property, Susi Johnston finally received respond from the police force. The solution was to put her under guard during the time of investigation. Starting from the 13th of February 2013, Susi started having 6 Police Officers guarding her home. Day in and day out they are there, to this day.


Trading freedom and privacy for safety. That is the cost she has to pay. The investigation is still ongoing. After 20 months, countless pleas to the police department, complying to everything, continuous follow up, she is still in danger of further attacks and possible loss of her property.


The trauma is unimaginable. However, not giving up, Susi finds her situation rather comical at times. The officers guarding her became her new found family. Many of them are young, attractive, and full of fun.

Needless to say, none of this humorous side of the saga is worthy of losing her sense of safety, privacy, and well, human right altogether. She is not physically alone, nor have the options to be. However, she is, at this point, fighting alone.


You could sit back in your lazy chair and say, “What a terrible situation” then go about your day, sipping ice tea with lemon on top – or you could step up to help support a fellow human.

You could tell yourself “This would never happen to me” – or you could do your research, learn about how the Indonesian law applies to your situation.

If you happen to have a property purchased under a nominee, you would probably need a lawyer right about now, because more than likely, the fact that your home is documented under other people’s name is about as good as a big fat milkshake that brings all the thugs in your yard.


This is an Exposed episode you can’t afford to miss especially if you’re in a position where this could potentially happen to you. Listen tonight, October 26th 2013 at 7pm UTC+8 and Monday October 27th 2013 at 12 noon.


Kay Armanousa










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