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Jakarta Post

'Pesantren' head reported to police for allegedly marrying 7-year-old girl

  • Suherdjoko

    The Jakarta Post

Semarang   /   Fri, April 3, 2020   /   06:00 am
'Pesantren' head reported to police for allegedly marrying 7-year-old girl The National Commission for Child Protection has reported 54-year-old pedophile Pujiono Cahyo Widianto, also known as Syekh Puji, to the police for allegedly marrying a 7-year-old girl. (Shutterstock/File)

The National Commission for Child Protection has reported 54-year-old convicted pedophile Pujiono Cahyo Widianto, better known as Syekh Puji, to the police for allegedly marrying a 7-year-old girl.

“We have reported Syekh Puji to the Central Java Police in mid-March. He already committed a crime in 2008, and has repeated it again now,” claimed commission chairman Arist Merdeka Sirait on Thursday.

Arist said that the Central Java Police should arrest Syekh Puji immediately.

“Seven of Syekh Puji’s own relatives have taken issue with his actions and reported them to the police,” he said. “They witnessed his unregistered marriage [to the child] in 2018.”

In 2009, Syekh Puji, who heads a pesantren (Islamic boarding school) in Semarang, was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment for marrying a 12-year-old, an offense that carries a maximum penalty of 15 years’ imprisonment and a fine of Rp 300 million (US$ 18,000) as stipulated in the 2002 Child Protection Law.

Arist said that because Syekh Puji was a repeat offender he should be sentenced to a maximum penalty of 20 years’ imprisonment and chemical castration as stipulated in Law No. 35/2014 on Child Protection.

Central Java Police spokesman Gr. Comm. Iskandar F. Sutisna confirmed that the police had received the report.

“So far we have already questioned six witnesses. The medical examination result shows that there are no signs of sexual violence against the underaged girl in question. Our investigators are still conducting an investigation to determine if there are signs of a crime having taken place,” he said.

Separately, Central Java Women’s Empowerment, Child Protection, and Family Planning Agency official Saptiwi Mumpuni said the agency could not take any action against Syekh Puji because it was still awaiting evidence for the police.

“As far as we know, the child is still attending school. According to the information that we have received, the child has not suffered from any violence,” she said. (dpk)