Stab Magazine | Lombok machete bandits strike
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Lombok machete bandits strike

Three tourists have been robbed by machete-wielding bandits in two separate incidents on the island of Lombok, Indonesia – home of the famed Desert Point. American Brian John sustained severe injuries to his arm after he was hacked multiple times by a machete. He had reportedly refused to hand over valuables to the bandits. It’s […]

news // Mar 8, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Three tourists have been robbed by machete-wielding bandits in two separate incidents on the island of Lombok, Indonesia – home of the famed Desert Point.

American Brian John sustained severe injuries to his arm after he was hacked multiple times by a machete. He had reportedly refused to hand over valuables to the bandits. It’s believed that John was driving a car from Selong Banak to Kuta Lombok when a downed electrical cable forced him out of his car to investigate. He was then surrounded by a group of bandits who demanded his valuables.

A few hours later, two female German tourists were robbed but left unharmed while riding the main road near Areguling Beach.

Foreigners travelling Lombok have long been the target of bandits. Everything from midnight blockades to hotel shakedowns at gunpoint have been reported amongst the surf community.

In an interview with the great Desert Point legend known only as Pablo, Indonesian surf magazine Bali Belly recalls the time a surfer had his arm hacked off during a nighttime robbery in front of the left reef:

When I got to the riverbed, Blair was on his hands and knees and they were just hacking him up,” recalls Pablo. “If I had got there a minute later, he would have been done. It was a full moon, and at Deserts it’s like daylight on a full moon, you can see clear as day. So I started screaming, and I had a big old spear gun. They saw that and immediately ran off. Blair tried to get up and didn’t know what was going on. All I could see was his arm was hanging by a thread. I was yelling for something to plug him up with and put the thing back together. One of my buddies had a sarong and I kinda wrapped his arm and shoulder together. I didn’t see until later that Blair had cuts all over his back. We laid him down and put pressure on his arm to keep the bleeding down and tried to think of how the heck we were gonna get him out of there.”

Back in 2000 the island was plagued by sectarian violence between Muslims and Christians, leading Indonesian police to shoot more than a dozen people. In the time between, roughly 1,000,007 surfers have experienced brain-warping sky blue drainers at Desert Point.

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