Saturday, July 12, 2014

Indonesia: Australian, 23, Kills Mother of Daughter Riding Tandem on Motorbike in West Java

According to The Daily Mail, Australian national Jake Drage, 23, is facing up to six years in prison over a motorbike crash that killed an Indonesian mother of a 16-year-old driver in Java.

The Australian has been in West Java police custody since the collision happened on June 30 and is likely to charged with "reckless driving resulting in death."

If found guilty, Jake Drage faces a maximum sentence of six years in prison and/or a maximum fine of $1,102. 

The West Australian was on a surfing holiday when his motorbike clipped another two-wheeled motor vehicle.

According to Jake Drage's mother, Tiena, who has joined her son in  West Java to assist, the tandem riders on the the other motorbike included both the Indonesian mother and daughter that he "clipped."
  Tragically, the mother of the daughter died from her injuries the next day while hospitalized.

COMMENT: Police have confirmed that they have received a letter from the victim's family, saying they did not blame Drage for the crash, which will be admitted as evidence at his trial and considered by the court.

In a statement released earlier this week, the Australian extended his sympathies to the family involved. "The accident leaves me with a sadness that is very difficult to describe and I want to thank her family for all the kindness and goodwill they have shown me" he said.

Mr. Drage had been receiving assistance from consular officials, the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed earlier this month.

Last week, THE WEST AUSTRALIAN reported that Jake Drage pleaded his innocence on his Facebook page, claiming he is being held in jail near small West Java town Cimaja against the wishes of the family of the decedent.

"The police are holding me. I was awoken in a room, forced to sign some papers and was taken to another room. Something really dodgy is going on," he said.

Drage, from Geraldton, north of Perth, also wrote he was not driving dangerously nor was he intoxicated.

Last Thursday, his mother, Tiena Drage, posted a comment on Facebook that the Australian Embassy had said her son had not been formally charged or arrested. "The embassy staff will visit him tomorrow mainly to see how he is being treated and his well being."

Ms. Drage has told local news website, EVERYTHING GERALDTON, about the events before her son's accident last Monday (June 30).

Through his mother, Tiena, Drage said he was facing uphill behind a small truck when he tried to see if it was safe to pass. "All of a sudden a motorbike with two people on it was there and clipped Jake's bike. The bike was being driven by a 16-year-old girl, and her mother was on the back not wearing a helmet. The mother died on July 1 in hospital.

An online appeal has been launched to raise $5,000 to help fly Drage back home.

This report will be updated as new information becomes available.