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Jakarta Post

KPK calls for maximum sentence for Novel attackers amid low-sentence demand

  • Alya Nurbaiti and Moch. Fiqih Prawira Adjie

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, June 12, 2020   /   03:00 pm
KPK calls for maximum sentence for Novel attackers amid low-sentence demand Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) senior investigator Novel Baswedan (right) stands beside his wife Emilda on Jan. 15, 2019, while greeting a rally of supporters at KPK headquarters in Jakarta. (The Jakarta Post/Seto Wardhana)

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) has called on the panel of judges to hand down the maximum sentence on two alleged attackers of senior KPK investigator Novel Baswedan as prosecutors only demanded light punishment.

Prosecutors demanded that the bench sentence the defendants, Chief Brig. Ronny Bugis and Brig. Rahmat Kadir Mahulette from the National Police’s Mobile Brigade, to one year of imprisonment for throwing acid into Novel’s face in April 2017.

Novel’s left eye was severe injured as a result of the attack.

Both defendants have been indicted of violating Article 353 Paragraph 2 of the Criminal Code on torture causing severe bodily harm, which carries a maximum jail term of seven years.

“The KPK hopes the panel of judges will rule justly by considering the sense of public justice as well as the fact that Novel became a victim when doing his duty in handling corruption cases,” KPK acting spokesperson Ali Fikri said in a statement on Friday.

Read also: 'Someone influential': Novel Baswedan tells court he has name of person behind his attack

Meanwhile, the antigraft body’s workers union head Yudi Purnomo Harahap criticized the prosecutors’ sentence demand, saying it would hinder corruption eradication efforts, as the attack was based on Novel’s profession as a graft buster.

He went on to say that the lack of legal guarantees and protection for Novel as a human right defender only showed that President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo was not serious in fighting corruption.

"The people who want to disrupt the fight against corruption will repeat terror against KPK employees or leaders without hesitating,” said Yudi.

He added that the union urged the President to give an order to law enforcers through the formation of an independent team to uncover the mastermind behind the attack and investigate a possible obstruction of justice in the case.