Wed, 13 Aug 2003

Driver nabbed for robbing tourists

JAKARTA: Police arrested a taxi driver on Tuesday for alleged extortion and violence to two Japanese tourists who had just arrived in Jakarta.

City Police head of detectives for general crimes, Adj. Sr. Comr. Idham Azis said that the driver, Majapahit Ariyanto, was arrested at 7:30 a.m. at the Koperasi taxi center in Jatibening, Bekasi.

Majapahit picked up the two Japanese at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport on Monday afternoon. He attempted to extort the tourists by asking for Rp 600,000 (US$70) in fares. He even insisted on dropping the tourists outside Sahid Jaya hotel on Jl. Jend. Sudirman, Central Jakarta, to avoid their being cheated.

"He pushed the tourists out of his taxi, taking Rp 600,000 from them," said Idham.

As a result of the incident, one of the victims, Tamari Yakisaka, 32, suffered light injuries to his hand and head.

"We are charging him with extortion under Article 368 of the Criminal Code and with violence under Article 352, which respectively carry maximum sentences of nine years and three months in jail," said Idham. -- JP