The body of a Balinese woman murdered in America last month was flown back to her home island on Wednesday.
The remains of 31-year-old Luh Endang Susiani arrived from at lunchtime.
Susiani, who had been living and working in the USA since 2009, was murdered on 27 April by a carjacker in North Charleston, South Carolina.
She and her boyfriend, Nyoman Arwani, were approached by an armed man as they sat in the car in a carpark. Arwani was ordered out of the vehicle; Susiani’s body was later found at a roadside.
Local man, 28-year-old Tyler A. Brown-Kelly, was subsequently arrested for her murder.
“The remains are being brought home after an autopsy performed by Medical University of South Carolina Hospital and some administrative procedures. The Foreign Ministry will hand over the remains to the family upon arrival at the airport,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman PLE Priatna on Wednesday.
Priatna said that Brown-Kelly had been effused bail and faced a possible death sentence.
“The Indonesian Consulate General in New York continues with its legal actions. We want a heaviest punishment for the perpetrator, as requested by the victim’s family,” he said.
Susiani had gone to the USA after singing up with PT Quantum Job, aYogyakarta-based employment agency. She had been working in a South Carolina Chinese restaurant.
Her body was transferred from the airport on Wednesday afternoon to her family home in Bubunan village, Seririt, Buleleng for her funeral.
“We are deeply grieving but at the same time we feel so relieved that the transport of our daughter’s body ran smoothly with the help of so many parties,” said Susiani’s father Putu Artana as her body was unloaded from a Singapore Airlines plane at the Ngurah Rai Cargo Terminal; “We are hoping that the American government process my daughter’s murder case and brings her killer to justice.”
Artana said that the family planned to hold the first of a series of purification rituals at their home on Thursday.
“The ritual will be carried out because Susiani’s death was considered unnatural according to the Balinese tradition,” he said, adding that the body would then be cremated on 14 May.
Head of the citizens’ protection at the Indonesian Foreign Ministry, Dino Nurwahyudin, said that the repatriation of Susiani’s body had been paid for by the government and the employment agency that had initially sent her to America.
“The repatriation process of Susiani’s body was made possible with funding from the government of Indonesia and PT Quantom Job,” he said, adding that Indonesian officials were pushing for compensation from the US government.
Local legislators in Bali have also called for compensation to be provided by the Bali administration. Ketut Kariyasa Adnyana, of the Bali Legislative Council, said that the family deserved assistance.
“The late Susiani was not covered by working insurance while she stayed in America,” he said.