The Jakarta Post
North Sumatra Police have arrested the chief editor of local online media outlet sorotdaerah.com, Lindung Silaban, for publishing allegedly false articles about North Sumatra Police chief Insp. Gen. Paulus Waterpauw.
Lindung was arrested in Medan, North Sumatra, on Tuesday night. The owner of the media outlet, Jon Roi Tua Purba, was also arrested but was released not long afterwards.
The local news website was shut down and is currently inaccessible.
“The news articles he published are hoaxes and defamatory,” Paulus said.
The articles in question reported that Paulus had received a bribe from a businessman named Mujianto. The businessman is currently a suspect in a fraud case.
“The articles are not based on facts,” Paulus claimed.
Lindung was now facing charges under Article 27 of Law No 19/2016 on information and technology, North Sumatra Police spokesperson Sr. Comr. Rina Sari Ginting told The Jakarta Post on Thursday.
The North Sumatra Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI) and the Indonesian Journalist Union (PWI) have released a statement condemning the arrest.
“We condemn the police’s repressive action of arresting journalists and shutting down the news website. The act violates Law no 40/1999 on press freedom,” North Sumatra PWI head Hermansjah said. (gis/swd)