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Inflated: A police officer administers a driving test in Tangerang, Banten, in June. The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) is investigating allegations that Insp. Gen. Djoko Susilo was involved in a misappropriation of driving simulators which caused up to Rp 100 billion in loses to the state when he was the chief of the National Police Traffic Corps. (Antara/Muhammad Deffa)
In a series of historic firsts, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) named an active-duty police general as a suspect in a graft investigation on Tuesday as investigators raided his former headquarters searching for evidence.
Such bold moves have long been desired by a public eager to see the KPK fight corruption with the same zeal as their peers in Hong Kong, who have not hesitated to investigate, prosecute and imprison corrupt cops.
The late-night raid was made on the National Police Traffic Corps headquarters in South Jakarta, where KPK investigators combed for documents that might implicate the former head of the corps, Insp. Gen. Djoko Susilo.
Djoko, who is now head of the Police Academy in Semarang, Central Java, is the first active-duty police general to be named a graft suspect by the antigraft body.
He has been charged with abusing his authority to enrich himself and others while causing state losses in the procurement of 700 two-wheel and 556 four-wheel vehicle simulators worth Rp 190 billion (US$20.14 million), last year.
“We want to remind people that the KPK doesn’t favor anyone, including members of the police, in its efforts to eradicate corruption. We want to work with the National Police, even if allegations involve members of the police force,” KPK chairman Abraham Samad said after a closed-door meeting with National Police chief, Gen. Timur Pradopo at National Police headquarters in South Jakarta.
Abraham added that the KPK and the National Police agreed to pursue a joint investigation of the case, with the KPK examining Djoko’s role in the case and the police to probe officials involved in the procurement.
Abraham and one of his colleagues, Bambang Widjojanto, came to meet leaders of the National Police after several police officers had allegedly attempted to withhold evidence collected by KPK investigators at the Traffic Corps’ headquarters.
According to Abraham, the police finally agreed to allow KPK officials to take the evidence for further verification, saying “the KPK will return any documents if the National Police need them”.
Echoing Abraham, Timur said the National Police would always support the KPK. “The investigation, of course, will move on. We will respect the commitment we have made to the KPK,” he said.
Irregularities in the project tender were first unveiled when PT Inovasi Teknologi Indonesia’s president director, Bambang Sukotjo, was accused of bribing officials to win the procurement.
The Bandung District Court sentenced Bambang to three-and-a-half-years’ in prison, to which the Bandung High Court added 46 months.
Bambang’s trial led to a further investigation when he testified that PT Citra Mandiri Metalindo’s director, Budi Santoso, had paid Rp 2 billion in kickbacks to Djoko as a reward for granting the project to Budi’s company.
Separately, Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Djoko Suyanto said on Tuesday he had phoned Abraham and Timur to prevent a rift between the two law enforcement bodies. “I told both leaders to avoid situations like that in the future. And both of them agreed with me.”
The minister was referring to the conflict between the KPK and the National Police a few years ago described as the “gecko vs crocodile”incident, with the tiny lizard referring to the KPK and its larger reptilian peer to the National Police.
The conflict was triggered by a move by the KPK to arrest a police general, to which police responded by launching criminal probes into two of the antigraft body’s five leaders.
“What happened in the past between the two law-enforcement bodies must not reoccur. Both institutions should be in synergy rather than fighting each other,” Djoko said.
KPK vs National Police
May 2, 2009: KPK chairman Antasari Azhar is arrested for the murder of businessman Nasruddin Zulkarnaen.
May 16, 2009: Antasari testifies to police and prosecutors that four KPK deputies and officials received bribes from businessman Anggoro Widjojo.
June 30, 2009: National Police chief detective Comr. Sr. Susno Duadji accuses the KPK of tapping his mobile phone, which reportedly reveals him demanding Rp 10 billion from Boedi Sampoerna to assist with retrieving the businessman’s savings from troubled Bank Century.
Sept. 9, 2009: The KPK announces it is investigating Susno’s role in the Bank Century case.
Sept. 15, 2009: Police declare KPK deputies Chandra M. Hamzah and Bibit Samad Rianto suspects in the abuse of their power in imposing a travel ban on Anggoro.
Oct. 29, 2009: Police arrest Bibit and Chandra for abuse of power, later adding charges of extortion and bribery against businessmen they were investigating.
Nov. 10, 2009: Sr. Comr. Williardi Wizard, a key witness in Nasruddin’s muder case, testifies that police officers pressured him to take part in a conspiracy to frame Antasari for murder.
Jan. 14, 2010: The KPK arrested Anggodo Widjojo, brother of Anggoro, who said in a wiretapped conversation that he tried to bribe Bibit and Chandra.
Aug. 31, 2010: The Corruption Court sentenced Anggodo Widjojo to four years’ imprisonment for attempted bribery.
Jan. 24, 2011: Attorney General Basrief Arief issued a letter to officially stop the prosecution of Bibit and Chandra.
May 16, 2012: KPK Deputy Chairman Bambang Widjojanto said the KPK will have no hesitation in launching a probe of “fat” bank accounts of police generals.
Source: The Jakarta Post
Bagus BT Saragih contributed reporting.