Indonesian police general sentenced to death for bodyguard murder, wife sentenced to 20 years in prison

“[He] thought about how to carry out the assassination. The defendant chose the location, the defendant chose which tool [weapon he] would use, and the defendant mobilized other people to help him,” Santoso said.

Candrawati, who has also been charged with first degree murder and is on trial, was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Monday.

Assassinated police officer Brigadier Nopryansyah Yosua Hutabarat.

Assassinated police officer Brigadier Nopryansyah Yosua Hutabarat.

Sambo, once one of Indonesia’s top police officers, sat calmly in court when he learned of his fate.

It was greeted by Hutabarat’s parents, who had flown to Jakarta from their home in Jambi province on the island of Sumatra.

His mother Rosti Simanjuntak carried a photo of her late son as she entered the court and said she was happy with the outcome.


“The family is grateful to the judges, the public, the attorneys and the media. [The sentence] brought justice to Yosua,” she said.

Kamarudin Simanjuntak, a family lawyer, added: “The panel of judges is independent and appointed by God. They checked the facts carefully, which means they brought victory not only to Yosua but also to the Indonesian people.”

The police had found during their investigation that Sambo had fired Hutabarat’s gun into the wall of his home to create the impression that a shootout had taken place.

Hutabarat’s relatives also discovered bruises and other wounds on his body, including crushed finger bones, a cigar burn and a missing fingernail, after he was transported from Jakarta to Jambi last year.

The family’s lawyers had also asked how Hutabarat, who was a trained sniper, missed each of the seven shots he originally claimed he had originally claimed, while another officer hit him with four of the five rounds he fired, leaving seven bullet holes .

Monday’s conviction was historic in Indonesia, following a high-profile investigation and trial that put the spotlight on the issue of police impunity.

“There was no general sentenced to death in a criminal case…not only in the Reformasi era, but in the entire history of Indonesia,” said Bambang Rukminto, a researcher at the Institute for Security and Strategic Studies in Jakarta.

“This case has had a tremendous impact on public confidence in law enforcement. The sentence [should also] have a tremendous impact on law enforcement.”

He said it should prompt a full assessment of police practices and management “to prevent the birth of a new Ferdy Sambo in the future.”

Junior Officer Second Patrolman Richard Eliezer Lumiu, who admitted shooting Hutabarat on Sambo’s orders, faces his own verdict on Wednesday, while judges will read their findings on Tuesday on two other Sambo employees also charged with first degree murder are accused.

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Callan Tansill

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