Tue, 30 Aug 1994

Cutting remarks from prosecutor in murder case

JAKARTA (JP): The prosecutor in the case of the decapitated doctor told the North Jakarta District Court to reject the defense statement of lawyer Bambang Hartono and asked the court to sentence the accused to 10 years in prison.

Prosecutor Omsin Subarkah said in a trial session yesterday that he will maintain his earlier request that Ridwan Surya Dhanu, the secret lover of the victim, be jailed to 10 years for his role in persuading another man to commit a murder.

The prosecutor said that his argument is based on the court examination which proved that Ridwan is the one who asked Goenadi Tjahjo Wargo to kill Dr. Riyama Yawoga for Rp 120 million (US$55,248).

Dr. Riyama was found dead in her bedroom on Jan. 14 with her head nearly severed from her body.

Ridwan, 48, allegedly asked Goenadi to kill Riyama to end her demands for marriage and to write off a Rp 200 million loan that the doctor extended to him. Ridwan has two wives while Riyama was a divorcee with two grown-up children.

Representing Ridwan, lawyer Bambang Hartono said earlier that his client gave Goenadi Rp 20 million merely as a loan. Later on, it was Goenadi who coerced him to pay another Rp 100 million with the threat that Ridwan and his family would be murdered if he failed to pay.

Omsin dismissed the lawyer's theory, however, saying that the sequence of events between the murder and the surrender of most of the money justifies the assumption that Ridwan did not lend the money to Goenadi as stated. According to Omsin, these events show that he gave the money as payment for a service, which is murder.

Ridwan gave money to Goenadi on two separate occasions. The first time was on Dec. 21 of last year, when he handed over Rp 20 million. The second time was on Jan. 15, 1994, when he gave Goenadi Rp 100 million, the day after the general practitioner was found dead.

Responding to Omsin's assumption, lawyer Bambang said that it was impossible that Ridwan arranged the murder just to escape the doctor's demands for marriage or to free himself from the loan.

"He has two wives now and he is not a poor man. Rp 200 million is nothing for him, so why should would he bother to ask a man to do a job which could be done at lower cost," he told The Jakarta Post after the court session.

Ridwan, an ethnic Chinese, is a former banker of a bankrupted bank, Bank Umum Majapahit -- a bank where the doctor was registered as a client. As the bank collapsed in 1991, his relationship with Riyama developed into a love affair.

Presiding Judge Thomas Suyatno adjourned the trial session until Sept. 1, when the defendant's lawyer is scheduled to reply to the prosecutor's statements. (03)