Indonesian policemen jailed for acid attack on graft investigator

Novel Baswedan, Senior Investigator of Indonesia's anti-graft agency who had acid flung in his face in 2017, gestures as he talks during an interview at Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) headquarters in Jakarta, Indonesia, on December 6, 2019.
PHOTO: Reuters

JAKARTA - Two Indonesian policemen involved in a 2017 motorcycle acid attack on a senior graft investigator were jailed on Thursday for up to two years, longer terms than the prosecution had sought.

The investigator, Novel Baswedan, who was left partially blind, has said he believes the attack, as he was walking home from the mosque, was connected to corruption cases he was handling at the time.

Rahmat Kadir Mahulette was jailed for two years, while his colleague, Ronny Bugis, was jailed for one and a half years, the judge said in a streamed ruling. Mahulette threw the acid from the passenger seat while Bugis rode the motorcycle.

“(They were) found guilty to have committed violence that leads to heavy injury,” he said.

Prosecutors had sought one year’s jail for both men.

In January last year, police formed a fact-finding team to investigate the attack, but came up empty-handed.

President Joko Widodo ordered that a new police chief, appointed in November, solve the case by the end of the year.

Baswedan had said in December that it would be easy to solve his case and that it was just a matter of will.

He told Reuters on Thursday the trial was a “mere play” and that those who ordered the attack had never been found.

“I’m worried that this trial is a clear reflection of how the state does not support anti-corruption efforts,” he told Reuters.