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Orang Amerika buat hal di Lombok

Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara. Luke Gregory Lloyd, an American being held on suspicion of blasphemy and immigration violations after disrupting a late-night Koran recital near his house, denied all the allegations against him on Tuesday.

According to the 64-year-old, he was constantly disturbed by the loudspeaker at a musholla (prayer facility) near his home in Kuta village. On the night of Aug. 22, Lloyd said he went to the musholla to ask them to turn down the loudspeaker, which villagers were using to broadcast their Koran recital.

Police said Lloyd stormed into the musholla and berated worshippers. Lloyd, however, said he politely asked the villagers to turn down on the loudspeaker because the noise was not only disturbing him but also his expatriate neighbors.

Police said the American entered the musholla without taking off his shoes and then unplugged the microphone being used to recite the Koran.

Lloyd said he only got as far as the musholla’s courtyard, where he was pushed. He said he became angry and pushed back, at which point he was targeted by stones.

“It is not true that I unplugged the loudspeaker’s cable,” Lloyd said. “It is not true that I stomped on a Koran. It is not true that I hit a minor at the mosque. None of the allegations are true. I only asked them to turn the speaker down.”

He also said his house was trashed after the incident, with damages estimated at Rp 200 million ($22,000).

Lloyd expressed shock that he had been attacked and his house damaged, saying that he had frequently helped residents since moving to the village more than 10 years ago.

The American, who claimed to be a former mayor of a Californian city, said he taught English in the village and financially assisted three children there.

When asked about allegations that he had violated the immigration law, Lloyd said his visa was valid until April 1 next year. Earlier, police confirmed that Lloyd had been charged with blasphemy and was also suspected of immigration violations.

Police said they were requesting the help of an expert from the Ministry of Religious Affairs in their investigation into the blasphemy charge.
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