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Jakarta Post

Setya Novanto grilled by AGO

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, February 5, 2016   /  08:16 am
Setya Novanto grilled by AGO First summon: Former House of Representatives speaker Setya Novanto speaks to journalists after being questioned by investigators at the Attorney General's Office on Thursday. Setya was questioned as a witness in the alleged attempt to make a backroom deal with mining giant PT Freeport Indonesia. (Antara/Deni Hariyanto) (Antara/Deni Hariyanto)

First summon: Former House of Representatives speaker Setya Novanto speaks to journalists after being questioned by investigators at the Attorney General's Office on Thursday. Setya was questioned as a witness in the alleged attempt to make a backroom deal with mining giant PT Freeport Indonesia. (Antara/Deni Hariyanto)

The Attorney General's Office (AGO) question disgraced former House of Representatives speaker and Golkar politician Setya Novanto as a witness on Thursday in connection with an alleged attempt to make a backroom deal to negotiate the contract renewal of mining giant PT Freeport Indonesia.

AGO investigators questioned Setya from 8 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Thursday as part of an initial investigation into a suspected conspiracy in which he and oil tycoon Muhammad Reza Chalid allegedly misused President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo'€™s and Vice President Jusuf Kalla's names in a meeting with then Freeport president director Maroef Sjamsoeddin.

Setya went to the AGO after previously dismissing two previous summonses. Investigators prepared 36 questions for Setya. He was questioned without the presence of a lawyer as he is for now considered simply a witness, AGO junior attorney for special crimes Arminsyah said on Thursday.

"We asked about the meeting and the topics discussed in the meeting," he said as quoted by newsportal tempo.co.

Setya was previously summoned to House ethics hearings in relation to the Freeport meeting.

The AGO summons on Thursday was the third. Setya did not honor the two previous summons, claiming that he felt threatened and that he was ill. Setya told journalists he had done nothing wrong.

"I never asked for shares and never falsely used the President'€™s and Vice President's names. None of it is true. I explained everything to investigators," he said as quoted by kompas.com, adding that he would appear again at the AGO if more information was required from him.

He also maintained his innocence during the House ethics hearings probing his alleged misconduct and slammed the taped conversation between Maroef, Reza and himself that was used as the basis of the accusations against him, saying the recording was illegal.

The probe by the House ethics council led him to resign from the speaker post in December. Setya has been since assigned as Golkar faction chief in the House and fellow Golkar politician Ade Komaruddin replaced him as House speaker. (rin)

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