Pingtung District Prosecutors Office in Taiwan. Photo: Google Maps
Pingtung District Prosecutors Office in Taiwan. Photo: Google Maps

A 20-year-old Indonesian fisherman accused of murdering a 23-year-old crewmate on a Taiwanese fishing boat in waters near Guam on May 17, was detained by prosecutors in Pingtung County, southern Taiwan, on Thursday.

According to the Pingtung District Prosecutors Office, Abdul Halim allegedly stabbed crewmate Hariyanto and threw him overboard. His body has yet to be found, the United Daily News reported.

A preliminary police investigation found a dispute broke out when Halim, the chef on the Ming Man Hsiang No 38 boat, became agitated when he was about to prepare dinner for the crew only to find Hariyanto occupying the kitchen and refusing to leave until he cooked his own meal on the evening of May 17.

Halim was then seen with fresh knife cuts on his arms, prompting the Taiwanese captain to confront him. The captain was told the two had a fight and Hariyanto had been stabbed and thrown into the water.

By Wednesday on May 30, the vessel was escorted back to Pingtung by a Coast Guard Administration (CGA) vessel. Prosecutors and police investigators boarded the boat, collected evidence, questioned the crew and the case remains under investigation.

According to Taiwanese law, the sentence for murder is life imprisonment or imprisonment for no less than five years.

Read: Indonesian fisherman stabbed, thrown off ship by compatriot