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Jakarta Post

‘He’s a traitor’: Suspected attacker vents anger at Novel

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sat, December 28, 2019   /   06:28 pm
‘He’s a traitor’: Suspected attacker vents anger at Novel A police officer suspected of carrying out an acid attack on Novel Baswedan is escorted outside the Jakarta Police headquarters in South Jakarta on Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019. (Kompas.com/Ryana Aryadita Umasugi)

As mystery continues to surround the case of an acid attack on Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) investigator Novel Baswedan, one of two police officers accused of being behind the attack has expressed resentment against Novel.

The two officers, identified only as RB and RM, underwent investigation at the Jakarta Police on Saturday until 2:26 p.m. After being questioned, they were escorted outside the building where they met a group of journalists.

“Write it down. I don’t like Novel because he’s a traitor,’ RB, dressed in an orange detainee uniform and handcuffed, said as quoted by kompas.com.

Two men on a motorcycle threw acid at Novel’s face on April 11, 2017, as he was walking home from morning prayers at Al Ihsan Mosque in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta.

The two police officers were arrested on Thursday evening in Depok, West Java, potentially ending a two and a half year hunt for the perpetrators.

In spite of the arrests, antigraft activists and Novel’s lawyers are still skeptical about the outcome of the investigation. They expressed concerns about the police having possibly targeted “scapegoats”. The actual masterminds of the attack, they believe, come from within the police institution.

Read also: Police accuse own active officers of Novel Baswedan attack

National Police spokesperson Brig. Gen. Argo Yuwono said they conducted seven crime reconstructions and interrogated 73 witnesses before the arrests.

He said the police were able to identify RB as the one who threw the acid, while RM was identified as the one who rode the motorcycle.

“If there are more people involved, we will arrest them. We will not discriminate. But we can’t accuse just anyone if we have no evidence,” he said.  

The attack caused severe injuries to Novel, who previously underwent eye surgery in Singapore.