Indonesian officials say police have arrested six people for “blasphemy” for advertising free alcohol to patrons of a restaurant named Mohammed.
In a now-deleted social media post, Holywings Bar offered a free bottle of gin to men named Muhammad and women named Mary – a famous figure in the Bible – every Thursday if they showed their ID, according to the statement. It is reported by Agence France-Presse.
The post sparked online outrage, with several youth organizations reporting the alleged blasphemy to police, while other groups threatened to raid the bar’s websites.
Late Friday night, police introduced the six suspects, including the creative director of Holywings and the head of their advertising team, during a televised press conference.
“Six suspects have been identified and all of them work for the company,” said Budi Herdy Susianto, police chief of South Jakarta. Six were wearing the orange shirts typically worn by criminals in Indonesia with their faces covered.
“Suspects create content to drive customers to their outlets, especially those who achieve less than 60% of their sales goals,” Suzianto explained.
Police said the group is accused of numerous crimes, including blasphemy and spreading religious hatred, and could face up to 10 years in prison if found guilty.
After huge outrage in the country, the Holywings issued a public apology and stated that management was unaware of the action.