Sat, 13 Mar 1999

Detained man shot in trip to hideout

TANGERANG (JP): Police shot dead a man believed to be a member of a gang of robbers and wounded one of his accomplices in the back in Kampung Lontar, Pakuhaji district, early on Thursday.

The dead man was identified as detainee Suar, 36, and the wounded as Edi Item, 32, Tangerang Police chief Lt. Col. Pudji Hartanto said on Thursday. Edi fled the scene.

Pudji explained officers were forced to shoot Suar, who was apprehended on Feb. 10, when he tried to flee after leading them to the gang's hideout.

"The police gave warning shots, too, but Suar ignored them so they shot him."

He added that Suar's action distracted police and allowed Edi to escape.

Pudji said officers managed to arrest two other members of Suar's gang, identified as Yong In, 27, a resident of Kampung Melayu Barat, and Sobri bin Sanusi, 32, of Kohod village in Pakuhaji district,

"The two were arrested in their respective houses," Pudji said.

Suar's gang, known as Group 20, operated in a number of districts, including Pakuhaji, Mauk, Balaraja and Sepatan in Tangerang.

The gang's latest crime is believed to be the armed robbery of a trader's home in Tengkalo village, Pakuhaji. Trader Haji Rahman lost Rp 60 million in cash and valuables.

Yong In claimed he was forced to join the gang due to financial hardship.

"I had to do this to meet my family's needs," the former garment factory employee said. (41/emf)