Archipelago

Mandailing Natal regent
nabbed in Deli Serdang

A Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) team arrested Mandailing Natal regent Hidayat Batubara in the house of a lawyer in Veteran Laut Dendang complex in Deli Serdang regency, North Sumatra, on Wednesday afternoon.

Hidayat is suspected of accepting a Rp 1 billion (US$103,000) bribe in connection with a Bantuan Daerah Bawahan (BDB) project funded by the North Sumatra administration.

KPK spokesperson Johan Budi said after the arrest that Hidayat had been transferred to Jakarta for investigation.

“The Mandailing Natal regent has been arrested and was directly taken to Jakarta,” he said in Medan over the phone on Wednesday afternoon.

Johan said the arrest was conducted after a KPK investigative team apprehended a contractor who allegedly bribed the regent.

He said the contractor handed over Rp 1 billion to Hidayat at his home on Jl. Sei Asahan, Medan, at noon local time on Wednesday.

The KPK officials arrested the contractor and the acting head of the Mandailing Natal Public Works Agency, Chairul Anwar. The team further searched the regent’s house and found Rp 1 billion in cash in a plastic bag.

Hidayat’s lawyer, Marasamin Ritonga, said he would coordinate with his client’s family to discuss what measures should be taken following the regent’s arrest. (ebf)

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