Humanitarian Activist Detained

By: Nichole Vrsansky
By: Nichole Vrsansky

A woman with ties to Rockford is being detained in Indonesia and authorities there are not talking. She was in the country with her sixteen-year-old adopted son, helping those in need.

She has not been charged with a crime, yet joy lee Sadler has been in the custody of the Indonesian police for nine days. Her son is currently staying with a family there. The U.S. Embassy has not been able to contact her and Sadler’s friends and family say they have reason to believe the situation is not good.

When joy Sadler heard of the desperate conditions in Indonesia, she knew what she had to do. Armed with a nursing degree, she left in July to help fight injustice in a country absorbed in civil wars. For that reason her friends and family are pleading for her safe return.

Police in Indonesia say Sadler is being held for having a computer disk related to Aceh rebels. The people of Aceh have been fighting against the government for independence. But during a phone conversation to her daughter, Rosilyn, Sadler said she had nothing on her when she was arrested.

With calls to the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, congressmen, Amnesty International, the Red Cross, friends and family try to remain hopeful.

Rosilyn says Senator Harkin is writing a letter to the Indonesian government, but until then all they can do is wait.


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