Police most violent judicial
apparatus: Study

The police are the worst of all judicial apparatus that use violence in carrying out their duties, a study by the Jakarta Legal Aid Foundation says.

Following the police in the list of “most violent apparatus” were military officers, prosecutors, wardens and public order officers.

Foundation member Restaria F. Hutabarat, who chaired the research team, said police officers used torture as a regular method when questioning suspects. "Our study showed police detectives tortured because they were annoyed or impatient in seeking information," she said Wednesday.

According to the study, the most frequent kind of torture committed by police was punching, followed by kicking, slapping, hair pulling, burning parts of the body, poking with burning cigarettes, forced nudity, forced masturbation and groping.

Restaria said torture was introduced to suspects and defendants during legal processes, beginning with arrest through questioning, detention and until trial

"Even in Aceh where sharia law applies, the police commit torture and sexual harassment," she said.

The foundation conducted research from January 2009 to January 2010, with questionnaires as the main method to gather information.

Seven hundred and forty-eight suspects, defendants and convicts were surveyed in detention centers and prisons in Jakarta, Banda Aceh, Lhokseumawe, Surabaya and Makassar.

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