Jakarta High Court raises jail sentence for three convicts
The Jakarta High Court has sentenced three men accused of torturing Citibank customer Irzen Octa to five years in prison, the court’s spokesman said on Tuesday.
The spokesman, Ahmad Sobari, said that the panel of judges had decided on May 14 to annul the district court verdict sending the three defendants to jail for one year.
The defendants, Ahmad said, were proven guilty of violating Article 333 of the Criminal Code on restricting the freedom of others. “The three defendants, Arief Lukman, Donald Harris and Henry Waslinton, have been proven guilty of intentionally restricting someone’s freedom that leads to death and will serve a five-year prison sentence.”
The South Jakarta District Court previously sent the three private debt collectors to serve one year in prison for misconduct, while the court freed two other defendants in the case, Didik Setyo and Boy Yanto Tambunan, from all charges earlier this year.
The defendant’s legal representative, Wirawan Adnan, said that they had not read the copy of the ruling from the High Court.
Octa’s family welcomed the ruling from the High Court, saying that the decision had proven that there was still justice in the country.
“We are so pleased with the decision; there is still justice,” Suryadharma said.
Politician Irzen Octa was a Citibank credit card customer who died during a meeting with outsourced debt collectors last year.
In March last year, Octa went to a Citibank branch to complain about his reportedly inflated credit card bill. He was interrogated by debt collectors and collapsed. He died shortly after.
The court ruled that Octa had died from a ruptured blood vessel in the brain caused by chronic hypertension and not because of any physical assault by the debt collectors.
Octa had undergone several autopsies. One result revealed indications of violence on his body, while the other said he died from a stroke, which confused his family because Octa did not have any record of high blood pressure.
The family alleged that Octa had been beaten to death during the meeting and Octa’s wife later took the case to the police.
Citibank said that it has cleared the debts of Irzen Octa who allegedly owed the bank Rp 100 million (US$11,500) on his credit card.
Citibank has offered Octa’s family around Rp 1.5 billion for school, living and insurance expenses as a gesture of sympathy to the family. The death of Octa, along with the embezzlement case of Citibank’s former premium client manager Melinda Dee has dealt a severe blow to the credibility of the international bank.