Looking for love in all the wrong places

Credit:  Diimex, via Stuff

Credit: Diimex, via Stuff

Being as thick as two bricks and thinking with his other head may lead to a very much shortened life for Antony de Malmanche.

The son of New Zealand man potentially facing the the firing squad in Bali after allegedly importing 1.709kg of methamphetamines believes his father was caught in an online dating scam.

Bali police say the unemployed 52-year-old, Antony de Malmanche, was arrested on Monday at Bali’s Ngurah Rai airport after being seen acting suspiciously at the baggage claim area.

The head of customs at the airport, Budi Harjanto, said de Malmanche had flown in from Hong Kong and that Bali was his final destination and he was “here to get married”.

All the alarm bells were going off.  Even his own family told him he was being an idiot.  And still…

“His fiancee, travelling separately will be flying from Hong Kong to join him … They were in Hong Kong together. It’s possible he was going to get married using the profits [of carrying the drugs],” Budi said.

But his son, Ashley de Malmanche, told ONE News his father may have been caught up in an online dating scam after travelling to Hong Kong to see a woman he had met online.

He said he was surprised when he learned of his father’s arrest and said he could not afford to go to Bali to visit him.

He went on to tell the New Zealand Herald that he had warned his father about going to visit the woman.

“She lives in South Africa or somewhere. She said she would pay for his trip. I said to him ‘look, this is dodgy, people don’t just do that kind of thing – there is no such thing as a free lunch’. But he went.”

The woman bough him clothes, his ticket over there and money to buy a passport, he said.

He’s obviously a socket short of a socket set.  At the point someone hands you 1.7kg of meth to take into Indonesia as an entry ticket into your impending marriage, anyone with a partially operating brain would have taken the chance to back out.  

He is being held for suspected drug trafficking under article 113-2 of Indonesian law — an offence that carries death penalty, or a minimum 5 years imprisonment.

He has been handed over to the police for investigation, and is currently in police custody. He will remain there until the investigation is complete, when he is likely to be transferred to Kerobokan prison, where two Australians — Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan — and British woman Lindsay Sandiford are already on death row for drug smuggling offences.

Ministers for new president Joko Widodo have just confirmed that five drug criminals will be executed in the near future after exhausting all avenues of appeal.

Pro Tip:   If your fiancee wants you to import 1.7 kg of Meth into Indonesia so she can afford to pay for the wedding, don’t.


– Liam Hyslop, Stuff


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  • john Doe

    Silly, silly man. Caught like a possum in the headlights.

  • Cadwallader

    Are there rights of appeal to the King of the Maoris? I think this guy’s son is right. The guy was led astray in a rehearsed scam. It seems that Indonesia and certainly Malaysia are showing signs of relenting on executions for drug mules. There have been less executions in the past decade than the previous ten years. I suspect there is little reluctance to execute in Singapore though. The solution is not new: Execute the users, this will destroy the market and the money men behind it.

  • Nige.

    just from reports i have seen online and heard on the radio, the poor man doesn’t come across as particularly bright…or rich. This will count against him in an Indonesian court.

    The only thing i can see for him to do to help his situation is keep his mouth shut and convert to (Indonesian) Islam.

    • Billythekid

      A socket short of the socket said. Enough said.

    • Rachael Membery

      Or say that he is an addict

  • Cadwallader

    Whether a convict is executed or not can turn on quite a capricious decision. I do not think, in principle at least, that those who are a bit short in grey matter ought be executed as it raises the spectre of whether intent to commit a crime actually existed. I can never think of Bill Clinton without recalling his refusal as Governor of Arkansas to stay the execution of an inmate who was so thick he left the dessert of his last meal in his cell to eat “later.” He appears not to have had any appreciation of his doom. It was reported Clinton denied the last plea for clemency on a telephone while attending a Gala Function in Little Rock or perhaps he was otherwise dallying?
    The NZ’er in Indonesia may well escape the death penalty but the decision is likely to be years away. If indeed he is condemned and all avenues for clemency are exhausted I wager the msm here will be over it like scabies. TV3 will send some dribbling airhead (read: John Campbel) to stand outside the gaol at the time, reporting the niceties…What was the last meal? Have family members said their good-byes? Have funeral arrangements in Wanganui been sorted? The dumbest of these range of questions is usually: What is the prisoner’s frame of mind? Answer: Joy-filled of course you idiot! Newstalk could very well send Smalley: “You know he’s sort of gonna die.” “John Key could’ve prevented this.” “WO is complicit.” etc etc ad nauseum…..

    • ex-JAFA

      Ooh, if they’re going to send John Campbell, I’ve got a package I’d like him to take over for me…

      • Cadwallader


    • Alright

      Cadwallader: your Smalley line: “You know he’s sort of gonna die.” “John Key could’ve prevented this.” “WO is complicit.” etc etc ad nauseum…..

      Is classic.

      • Cadwallader

        Thanks. “You know” I should’ve “sort of” gone on for a full 60 minutes like that Bimbo does each morning from 5am. Stupid stupid creature that she is.

        • Alright

          ….and a “hot head” according Hosking. A few months ago after she opined via email that she “would like to punch” Cameron, Hosking said to her on air…”Your a hot-head behind the scenes.” TV3 people I know describe her as an Air Head.

          • Cadwallader

            More of an air head than a hot head I expect. Her most excremental nadir to date was decrying JK’s communications with WO. Anyone with half a brain knows that freedom of association is a singular right in NZ. I suppose if you are a leftie you get to be good at criticizing those who dare to disagree.

  • Loneliness can make you do silly things. Poor, silly bugger.

    • Albert Lane

      And a very low ability to reason. But if you look at today’s Herald, you’ll see an article about how many New Zealanders are victims of scams every day of the week. Poor reasoning ability = a sucker in waiting.

  • Kip_Dynamite

    I really feel bad for this guy. It looks like he got stitched up by some a-hole drug dealers. Very naive in this day and age, as most people know the signs and the alarm bells should have been ringing fairly loudly. I get the idea he’s not as world-wary as most of us so it’s a sad situation.

    • Billythekid

      The world turns a full circle.

    • David Kerr

      Sorry about the hard line here but did he know about the drugs in his baggage. If so, not so worldly wise or even nieve, this guy took a punt. Whilst negotiating the benifit system and fathering multiple kids he managed to live in society without being found mentally deficient. Again, scammed or not he had a decision to make and made a poor one, with the resulting conclusion.

      • Kip_Dynamite

        You may well be correct, he may have known about the drugs. I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt and assuming he didn’t as who in their right mind would take a chance on knowingly smuggling that kind of weight in meth in to Indonesia given the consequences of getting caught? Agreed – poor decision either way.

  • Ilovelife

    Seems he’s been draining the tax payer for years. Several children to several different women and on a benefit. So how many benefits does that add up to? He is an idiot of the highest order and clearly a danger to himself and everyone else. I don’t believe in the death penalty, though.

  • kayaker

    No criminal intent, just stupid and gullible, driven by loneliness. But that’s the way it is up there. Ever heard the warnings over the intercom when coming into to land in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and many other countries? It’s pretty final.

    • David Kerr

      “After being seen acting suspiciously in the baggage area”,………..no criminal intent, hmmm

      • Alright

        One might substitute “suspiciously” for “nervously” – I might look discombobulated as well if I hadn’t been through an international airport before. It was, according to his family, the first time he had been out of New Zealand. Stupid as? Correct. Deserves to be executed? Nup.

        • David Kerr

          Ok, fair enough . The death penalty is the ultimate price to pay for stupidity and possibly undeserved in this case. One, then has to assume then that this gentleman was so thick or nieve that he was unable to fathom the potential consequences of trafficking illegal drugs into what surely is the worst place to try to do so……..for a root.

          • Alright

            I agree. I suspect the most telling thing is that she wasn’t on the plane with him.

            He doesn’t look like someone who could even have paid the airfare to get to HK.

            No doubt authorities will be taking a keen interest in her, and his computer.

      • kayaker

        Thanks David. I retract, because I wasn’t aware of that, but am now. I’ll stand by the gullible and stupid bits.

  • Billythekid

    The missing socket. I love it.

  • Catriona

    Oh, what a sad, sorry situation. Why oh why do people fall in love on-line and not see they are being setup?

    • Nige.

      love is blind

  • BJ

    Imagine for a minute – there are so many people that make mistake after mistake in relationships all the while willing the sense of love to be true.

    Just a theory – He may have been given a matching bag from his girlfriend in Hong Kong if thats where he came from and she may have swapped the bag without his knowledge. His ‘suspicious behaviour’ may have been no more than a man in another country so out of his comfort zone, who panicked when he couldn’t spot his bag because maybe it had already been intercepted by a sniffer dog out back.

    Hey I’m with everyone here that knows he was gullible. He is looking like he wishes it was over already.

  • Aucky

    The NZ MSM is dying to make this into another Schapelle Corby cause celebre. They did their best with Leeza Ormsby but fell well short of the mark. There’s plenty of scope with this one though – death penalty, gullible Kiwi, love, massive stash, can’t afford a lawyer. Just what’s needed to liven up the news pages over the coming silly season. There’s bound to be a fundraiser for legal aid & MFAT will be in the gun for not being proactive in visiting De Malmanche. Don’t expect too much from radio or TV though as all of the darlings will be away on much needed breaks.

  • Another Middleagedwhiteguy

    Some weeks ago I received a text – “Hello call me urgent”, from +22569880457
    Needless to say I didn’t call. But I did check that 225 code, turns out it’s Ivory Coast.

    Several things, poor Antony probably is as thick as 2 bricks (nailed together), and because he followed the trail too far instead of just sending all his money and then cottoning on/giving up, the “lady” had to do something to get rid of him. Permanently.

  • Mikex

    mmmm ……dont think the ad on this page “Asian senior dating for men” is going to get a lot of takers right now.

  • Dave

    One of my good mates in the 70’s, also from Fielding, was a de Malmanche, a top bloke, still self employed and doing very well. It seems a few in the extended family didn’t fare so well in life. Whilst this individual didn’t do so well, lets not judge the whole family by the stupid actions of one.

  • Albert Lane

    I understand that drugs are freely available on the streets of Bali, the rest of Indonesia and Malaysia. But the local dealers pay bribes to the corrupt police which ensures they will not be arrested. So I wonder who gets caught? Stupid suckers.

  • James Growley

    Just goes to prove the old adage “there’s no fool like an old fool” especially when the old fool is male and infatuated by a younger pretty female. I guess we have had our fair share of those within our own parliamentary precincts.

  • Tom

    52 years old, unemployed, caught in Bali. Oh stop me there, I’d already made up my mind.