Underage boys make up the majority of gang rapists in Indonesia

Data released by the National Commission for Child Protection (Komnas PA) suggests that the majority of the 40 gang rape cases that occurred from April 2015 to May 2016 had been carried out by underage boys.

Ninety per cent of perpetrators were underage boys, Komnas PA chairman Arist Merdeka Sirait said, adding that while the victims had been girls in 100 per cent of the cases recorded. Komnas PA data does not include data collected by other stakeholders located in the provinces and regencies across Indonesia, he added, hinting that the number of cases could be much higher.

"From 2010 to 2014, perpetrators of sex crimes were predominantly individuals, but now the crimes appear to be carried out in groups. Gang rape has become very terrifying," Arist said on Friday, as quoted by kompas.com.

Arist said that, according to Komnas PA data, almost one third of the cases were carried out by underage perpetrators ranging in age from 12 to 17 years. Sixteen per cent were 14 years of age, while 15 per cent were aged 12 years or younger, he further said. Arist speculated that many gang rape cases were triggered by pornography and the consumption of alcohol and or drugs.

"These groups threaten children's lives, influencing children watch pornography, to consume alcohol. They could also be influenced by social media content," he said, adding that a comprehensive address must be conducted to face the issue.

One of the more recent cases occurred in Tangerang, Banten, where 16-year-old RA, accompanied by two friends aged in their twenties, allegedly raped and murdered 19-year-old EF, who is thought to have been RA's girlfriend.