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Jakarta Post

Foreign, local inmates receive remissions on Independence Day

  • Ni Komang Erviani and Slamet Susanto

    The Jakarta Post

Denpasar/Yogyakarta   /   Sat, August 15, 2015   /  04:23 pm

A number of inmates serving their jail terms in different penitentiaries throughout the country will receive remissions on Indonesia'€™s Independence Day this coming Monday.

In Bali, 41 foreign inmates serving out their jail terms in prisons across the resort island will receive remissions, two of whom will be directly released.

'€œA Dutchman will be freed from Kerobokan prison and a Malaysian national will be freed from Karangasem prison on Independence Day,'€ head of the Bali office of the Law and Human Rights Ministry, Nyoman Putra Surya Atmaja, said on Friday.

Putra declined to give details on the foreign inmates to be released, saying that the remissions would be announced only on Monday when they would be officially declared.

He said that a total of 1,307 inmates would receive dasawarsa (10-yearly) remissions this year. Of those, 35 would be directly released.

A dasawarsa remission is a special remission given once every 10 years of Independence Day commemorations and is given without any special assessment. The remissions range from days to three months.

Aside from those, 974 inmates will receive regular remissions given annually to commemorate Independence Day. Of those, 30 inmates will be directly freed.

Putra also said that the number of inmates to receive remissions could increase because his office was still completing the administrative requirements for the remissions.

In Yogyakarta province, the remissions will be given to 726 inmates, 41 of whom will be directly released. Of the 41 inmates to be released, two were imprisoned for corruption cases and one for a trafficking case.

'€œThere is no difference in treatment of inmates. All inmates, including corruptors and drug smugglers, have the same right to receive remissions,'€ head of the Yogyakarta provincial office of the Law and Human Rights Ministry, Dwi Prasetyo Santoso, said.

Dwi said that of the 726 inmates receiving remissions, 82 were inmates convicted of special crimes while the remaining 644 were convicted of general crimes. Of the 82 inmates, 67 were convicted in drug cases, three in money laundering cases, eight in corruption cases and four in trafficking cases.

Of the 664 inmates, most will receive remission of between a month and six months and 38 of them will be directly released.

Last year, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) deplored the fact that some corruption convicts received Independence Day remissions.

A number of embezzlers who received remissions were convicted before 2012, before the endorsement of Government Regulation No. 99/2012 barring graft convicts from receiving remissions.

Former tax officer Gayus H. Tambunan, for example, received a five-month sentence reduction last year. He was sentenced to 28 years in prison on multiple convictions: accepting bribes, failing to report gratuities, money laundering and bribing police officers to escape detention. Businessman Anggoro Widjojo also received a five-month remission.

Other corruption convicts receiving remissions on last year'€™s Independence Day included businessman DL Sitorus, former Bekasi mayor Mochtar Muhammad and former tax officer Bahasyim Assifie, each of whom were given a four-month sentence reduction. Convicts also receive remissions on major religious holidays.

'€œRemissions given on religious holidays is often the most welcomed by inmates,'€ Yogyakarta Governor Sri Sultan Hamengkubuwono X said on Friday.

He expressed the hope that released inmates would find decent jobs and stay away from crime. He said there were many important world figures who had previously lived bad lives, but who had later repented.

'€œThere are also many cases in which after being released from prison inmates returned to their criminal ways,'€ Sultan said.

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