Fri, 03 Mar 2000

Defendant rearrested for alleged drug smuggling

JAKARTA (JP): Robbery defendant Reza Firmansyah was arrested late on Wednesday for the second time for an alleged attempt to smuggle approximately one ounce of marijuana into the Central Jakarta District Court compound.

"The defendant was arrested at the district court's detention house for alleged possession of approximately one ounce of marijuana," First Sgt. Pardjiman, a police officer assigned to the district court, said on Thursday.

The defendant was scheduled to attend a hearing at the district court on the day, during which prosecutor Abdul Kadir read his indictment against the defendant, who allegedly committed a robbery in front of Gadjah Mada Plaza in Central Jakarta last November.

Pardjiman said he initially did not find any suspicious items on the former parking attendant, who used to work at the plaza's parking lot.

"He did not bring anything except the clothes he wore," he said.

Pardjiman's main tasks are to escort convicts on their way from the Salemba Detention Center in Central Jakarta to the district court, and to prevent them from making trouble in the district court.

Uster Siregar, an official at the Central Jakarta Prosecutor's Office confirmed Pardjiman's statement.

"Reza chatted with other convicts and visitors, but he did not commit any suspicious acts as he was waiting for the hearing," he said.

Prosecutor Abdul Kadir later said there was no hearing for the defendant as it was adjourned until next week.

Abdul Kadir said the defendant was indicted under article 365 of the Criminal Code, which carries a maximum sentence of nine years in jail.

"He is indicted for an armed robbery in front of Gadjah Mada Plaza last November," he said.

As the hearing was adjourned, the defendant was escorted back by Uster to the district court's detention house.

Pardjiman, who came minutes later, suspected the defendant as he was carrying a packet of chocolate Tango wafers.

"I took the packet and found the marijuana inside," said Pardjiman.

Pardjiman arrested Reza and later brought the defendant to the Central Jakarta Police Precinct to prepare a fresh dossier on the case.

According to the law, the defendant will face a jail term for the drug case after he completes the sentence for the armed robbery.

Pardjiman said the defendant admitted that the marijuana was entrusted to him by the wife of convict Syachrul Amien for a certain payment. Syachrul is being detained at the Salemba Detention Center for an unclear criminal case. (asa)