Headlines

President orders Susno’s
arrest but no one knows
where he is

President Susilo Bambang Yu-dhoyono has instructed law enforcement bodies to execute a court ruling ordering the imprisonment of graft convict and former National Police detectives chief Comr. Gen. (ret) Susno Duadji, whose whereabouts remained unknown as of Friday afternoon.

Yudhoyono summoned National Police chief Gen. Timur Pradopo and Attorney General Basrief Arief to meet him at Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in East Jakarta on Friday to discuss prosecutors’ failure to put Susno behind bars.

“My instruction to both of them was brief: enforce the law as fairly and as appropriately as possible,” Yudhoyono told a press conference after the meeting, which was held shortly after he arrived home from a five-day foreign tour.

Basrief said he would reschedule Susno’s arrest, while Timur promised to help with the process. The two were tight-lipped when asked about Susno’s whereabouts.

Deputy Attorney General Darmono said that he believed Susno was still either in Jakarta or Bandung, and that his office had filed a request to the immigration office to slap a travel ban on Susno.

Lili Pintauli Siregar, a commissioner with the Witness and Victims Protection Agency (LPSK), said that the agency did not know where Susno was even though she admitted Susno had been under the agency’s protection since 2010.

Susno was considered a whistle-blower because he leaked information about corrupt practices involving the tax office, the National Police, the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and numerous domestic and foreign companies.

“Our last meeting with Susno was in February when he submitted an application for an extension of his protection program,” Lili said.

One of Susno’s defense lawyers, Fredrich Yunadi, also declined to reveal Susno’s whereabouts.

Susno made headlines when he evaded attempts by a group of prosecutors who went to his residence in Bandung, West Java, on Wednesday to take him to Sukamiskin Penitentiary, where he was supposed to serve his three-and-a-half-year jail term.

Instead, dozens of police officers escorted the disgraced former police general to the West Java Police headquarters, which served as a sanctuary, a move regarded by many as an arrogant display by the police of a disregard for the law.

In November last year, the Supreme Court upheld a verdict that declared Susno guilty of corruption. The court also ordered Susno to pay Rp 200 million (US$20,576) in fines and Rp 4.2 billion as restitution to the state.

Susno’s lawyer, who is also a noted state administrative law expert and a former minister, Yusril Ihza Mahendra, claimed that the Supreme Court ruling was flawed and should be rendered void as it did not specifically order Susno’s detention.

Also on Friday, West Java Police deputy chief Brig. Gen. Rycko Amelza Dahniel said officers from the National Police’s Internal Affairs Division had arrived Bandung to probe Wednesday’s incident.

The police’s internal investigators had grilled West Java Police chief Insp. Gen. Tubagus Anis Angkawijaya, Rycko confirmed.

Tubagus has admitted he ordered his personnel to go to Susno’s house and escort him. He claimed his move was aimed at “preventing a clash between Susno and prosecutors”.

“The questioning took place on Thursday. The internal affairs personnel examined the complete chronology,” Rycko said.

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