New Zealand woman arrested in Bali drugs case

Myra Lynne Williams (left) of New Zealand attends a press conference at National Anti Narcotics Agency for Bali province in Denpasar on Bali island on Sept 2, 2016.
Myra Lynne Williams (left) of New Zealand attends a press conference at National Anti Narcotics Agency for Bali province in Denpasar on Bali island on Sept 2, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

DENPASAR, INDONESIA (AFP) - A New Zealand woman has been arrested in Bali after flying into the resort island allegedly carrying crystal methamphetamine following a drug-fuelled party in Australia, an official said on Friday (Sept 2).

Myra Williams could face up to 12 years in jail after being detained at the Indonesian island's airport on Wednesday following her arrival from the Australian city of Melbourne, said Bali anti-drugs agency chief Putu Gede Suastawa.

Officials became suspicious of the 27-year-old as she was shouting. A search turned up 0.43g of crystal methamphetamine.

"At the airport's immigration office we found a piece of plastic wrapped around clear white crystals," Suastawa said.

Suastawa said the suspect told officials she had been partying in Melbourne and taken crystal meth, ecstasy and marijuana before flying to Bali.

Indonesia imposes capital punishment in serious cases of drug trafficking but Williams should avoid the firing squad as she was carrying less than the minimum of five grammes required by law to hand down the death penalty.

The woman, who is in the custody of the anti-drugs agency, is likely to be charged with drug possession or use, said Suastawa.

If found guilty of possession, she faces up to 12 years in jail.

New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said it was aware of the detention of a New Zealand citizen in Bali and their embassy in Jakarta was providing consular assistance.

Foreigners are regularly caught trying to bring drugs into Bali, a tropical resort that attracts millions of visitors each year, and some have been sentenced to death.

Jakarta has stepped up a campaign against drugs and has put several foreign and Indonesian narcotics convicts to death by firing squad in the past two years.