Two teenagers, identified as Sym and Rn, robbed a taxi driver on Saturday afternoon after pretending to be regular customers.
The boys, both aged 17, stopped the taxi on Jl. Ahmad Dahlan, Depok.
After hailing the taxi, one of boys held a machete to the driver’s neck and demanded he give them money.
They got away after taking Rp 200,000 (US$21) from the driver and leaving a scar on his right cheek.
The Beji Sector Police managed to arrest them on the same day and handed the case to the women and children’s service unit at the Depok Police because the two boys are underage.
The police have charged them with Articles 365 of the Criminal Code on violent theft, which carries a maximum of 15 years in jail.
They are currently being detained at Cimanggis Detention Center.
The head of the criminal unit at Depok Police, First Insp. Bambang Parjianto, said that poverty was a major factor in the case.
“Both admitted they were from low-income families,” Bambang told tempointeraktif.com.
Seto Mulyadi, head of the National Commission for Child Protection, said Sunday the Depok Police chief had called him about the case.
“We still trust the police to solve the case, but we will accompany Sym and Rn during questioning should the police request that,” Seto said.
He added that he had asked the officers to avoid any kind of violence during the investigation process. “Assaulting them during the probe will only ensure they become harder criminals in the future,” he said.