Model questioned in Banten graft case

Model questioned in Banten graft case

INDONESIA - The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) questioned model and singer Rebecca Reijman on Thursday, the latest female celebrity summoned by the KPK in connection with its investigation of graft and money laundering allegedly committed by Banten businessman Tubagus Chaeri "Wawan" Wardana, the younger brother of Banten Governor Ratu Atut Chosiyah.

Speaking after the questioning, Rebecca categorically denied allegations that she had received an apartment or other expensive gifts from Wawan, who is a suspect in three separate graft cases also implicating the Banten governor.

"I have nothing to do with this case, and I have given clarification to the KPK about this," Rebecca said at the KPK headquarters on Thursday.

Last week, the KPK questioned soap-opera actress Jennifer Dunn, who confirmed that the Toyota Vellfire worth Rp 888 million (US$75,480) the KPK confiscated from her was a gift from Wawan.

Jennifer's lawyer Hotman Paris Hutapea denied that the car was given in exchange for sex.

"The gift was not for sex, it was purely for business. Wawan also gave her a credit card, which has been blocked by the KPK. The gifts were to persuade her to join Wawan's production house," Hotman told a press conference earlier this week.

The KPK is also scheduled to question another catwalk model, Catherine Wilson, for her alleged connection to Wawan. So far, Catherine has failed to meet the summons.

The KPK has neither confirmed nor denied an allegation that Catherine received an apartment from Wawan.

"Every witness is questioned because we think that she or he has information regarding the case being investigated," KPK spokesman Johan Budi said on Thursday.

Wawan is alleged to have given gifts to several models, including Aura Kasih, Syahrini, Cynthiara Alonara and dangdut singer Indah Dewi Pertiwi - all of whom have yet to be summoned by the KPK and have denied allegations they accepted gifts from Wawan.

The KPK had earlier raided Wawan's house and found a number of luxury cars in his garage. Investigators have confiscated a Lamborghini, Ferrari, Bentley, Rolls Royce and other cars from Wawan.

Some of the cars are registered under the name of his wife, South Tange-rang Mayor Airin Rachmi Diany.

KPK chairman Abraham Samad said on Wednesday that investigators would soon charge the recipients of Wawan's illicit assets, including Airin, with money laundering should the KPK find enough evidence to charge them.

"We are currently investigating the case thoroughly, later we will decide who will be charged as passive recipients under Article 5 of the Money Laundering Law," Samad said.

According to a wealth report she submitted to the KPK on Aug. 24, 2010, Airin was in possession of property worth Rp 103 billion (S$11 million) and luxury cars such as a Range Rover Sport, a Mercedes-Benz, a Mini Cooper, a Lamborghini, a Toyota Alphard, a Ferrari and a Porsche Panamera - in total worth Rp 22.1 billion.

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