When a number of touring bands (including The Black Lillies, Zane Williams and more) had gear stolen in Houston, TX, the police department began an undercover effort to investigate. What they discovered was absolutely shocking, as over 130 individuals were arrested and over $2 million was recovered.The multi-departmental effort focused on the stealing and black market resale of all sorts of equipment, including vehicles and musical instruments. According to Lt. Mike Osina of Houston Police Department, “These thieves were stealing anything and everything they could put their hands on. They went after trailers they saw parked on the streets of Greater Houston. They stole four wheelers, quad runners, lawn equipment, motorcycle equipment.”Country artist Zane Williams was quoted in the Click2Houston report on the arrests, talking about how his van and 100-year-old violin were stolen after a performance in Houston. “Yep, they stole my van and everything in my van, then they stole my trailer too… I’m really glad they got picked up.”Titled “Operation Wheels And Deals,” many of those connected to the robberies are also connected to gangs. According to the report, there are more charges and arrests to come. Hopefully acts of justice like this will make it safer for artists to hit the road.
The Indonesian Embassy in Tehran has released 15 Indonesian crewmen who had been detained at a penitentiary in Bandar Lengeh – a port city in the south of Iran – and has repatriated them to Indonesia. Indonesian Ambassador to Iran Octavino Alimudin said the well-established bilateral relationship between Iran and Indonesia had been a key factor in the process of releasing the citizens.“We have given legal assistance and provided a shelter that could expedite their release and their medical examination before they went home,” Octavino said.He called on future Indonesian workers who aimed to work as crewmen around the Persian Gulf to ensure the credibility of their employers so that such cases would not happen again in the future.In addition, they need to report their whereabouts to the embassy upon their arrival to Iran and not commit violations that could jeopardize their safety, Octavino added. As of Monday, according to the Foreign Ministry, more than 14,200 Indonesian crew members had arrived in the country through four points of entry: Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Jakarta, Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali, Tanjung Priok Port in Jakarta and Benoa Port in Bali.Topics : According to a release from the embassy, the crewmen had been jailed for the past four months for an illegal oil shipment and had been neglected by their employer, the shipowner who is residing in Singapore, until their release.“After they were released, the embassy also asked the shipowner to pay their salaries. The owner has agreed to pay [their salaries] gradually,” the release read.The crewmen tested negative for COVID-19 and arrived in Jakarta on Tuesday.Read also: Sailors’ deaths highlight lack of legal protections for migrant workers