A group of three Indonesians were caught collecting beach sand illegally in the Thousand Island regency, north of the capital Jakarta.
The three residents were collecting sand at a beach on Karang Lebar Island and were caught by a joint patrol from the Thousand Islands Public Order Agency on Wednesday, February 27.
Transportation Agency and other government officials caught them red-handed, The Jakarta Post reported.
Sugiri, the operational head of the Thousand Islands Public Order Agency, said the suspects were told to stop collecting sand in areas that are protected.
He said the three were released after a warning because the sand was not taken for commercial purposes. But they would have been arrested if they had taken the sand for commercial purposes, he said.
The official said people were allowed to take a small amount of sand, but not too much.