Canadian teachers held in Indonesia over alleged child sex abuse

Neil Bantleman (Facebook photo)

Neil Bantleman (Facebook photo)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:32 AM ET

OTTAWA -- Two Canadian teachers are being detained in Indonesia in connection with a child sexual assault case.

Jakarta police named former Calgary teacher Neil Bantleman, 45, and his Indonesian colleague, teaching assistant Ferdinand Tijong, as suspects in a case involving the alleged sexual abuse of three young students at Jakarta International School (JIS), where Bantleman is an administrator.

Bantleman, who used to teach at Webber Academy in Calgary, was taken in for questioning July 14 and hasn't been released or charged, said older brother Guy Bantleman.

He be held for 20 days without charges, Guy said, though that can also be extended another 20 days.

"It's quite heart-wrenching at times," Guy said Monday from Ontario, where he lives.

"He will be found innocent, but at the end of the day, there's still the ramifications of the allegations."

Bantleman's wife Tracy, who also works at JIS, visited him Monday.

She said she has no doubt about her husband's innocence.

"I know my husband, I know he's innocent, and the absolute same goes for Ferdi (Tjiong)," she said.

Kingston, Ont., native Allan Dee, who works as a pre-school teacher at the JIS, is being detained in Jakarta for questioning.

Dee's family told QMI Agency that he isn't considered a suspect but is stuck in the country until the end of the investigation, which could last months.

Canada's Foreign Affairs department would say only that it is providing ongoing assistance to two Canadians citizens there.

A spokesman said Monday that "consular officials are engaged with local authorities to gather additional information."

On April 15, the Jakarta Post reported that a six-year-old JIS student was allegedly gang-raped by cleaning service staff on two occasions between February 20 and March 20.

--with files from Jenna McMurray


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