Thu, 19 Jun 2003

Kenyan gets 15 years

MEDAN, North Sumatra: The Medan District Court sentenced Joseph Karanja Kamau, a 32-year-old Kenya citizen, to 15 years in prison after he was found guilty of trafficking 73 capsules of heroin weighing 800.15 grams.

The verdict, which was read out by presiding judge Anwar Zahri, was more lenient than the prosecutor's demand of the death penalty.

Prosecutor Mardiana Sianturi filed an appeal.

The defendant expressed his relief upon hearing the verdict. His lawyer, Zuhdi Lubis, said that his client was happy not to have received the death penalty.

Kamau was arrested by customs and excise officers at Polonia Medan airport on Oct. 22, 2002. It was found that he had swallowed 73 capsules containing heroin.

He claimed that the heroin belonged to his friend Ahmad in Qatar. He was only told to carry the drugs to Medan and hand them over to someone for US$10,000. -- JP

;JP;ANTARA; ANPAa..r.. Across-Journalist-assaulted Journalist assaulted by govt employee JP/5/ACROSS

Journalist assaulted by govt employee

MANADO, North Sulawesi: A journalist working for the Manado Post, Peggy Sampouw, 24, was allegedly assaulted by a civil servant at the Manado mayoralty office on Tuesday.

"Samadi, a civil servant at the mayoralty office, hit my face three times. He shouted while he was hitting me not to run 'certain articles'," Peggy told fellow journalists after reporting the case to the Manado Police.

Peggy suffered bleeding and bruising to her lips.

The Manado Post chief editor Suhendro Moroma said he would file a lawsuit.

The head of the local branch of the Alliance of Independent Journalists (AJI), Remon Pasla, said that AJI would demand Manado Mayor Wempie Fredrik be held responsible for the incident.

"The mayor should be responsible since the assault was committed by a civil servant at his office. We allege the violation was related to a mayoralty project handled by the mayor's wife, Ariane Nangoy," said Remon, who is also a journalist with Komentar daily.

He claimed that he had evidence of Ariane's involvement in monopolizing the mayoralty park's renovation project worth billions of rupiah.

The case is being handled by the police but no charges have been laid yet against the civil servant. -- JP

;JP;ANTARA; ANPAa..r.. Across-TNI-shoots-Papua TNI shoots rebel in Papua JP/5/ACROSS

TNI shoots rebel in Papua

JAYAPURA, Papua: The Indonesian Military acknowledged shooting two men, one who subsequently died as a result of his injuries, claiming they were Papuan rebels, on Tuesday in Hut village, Tor Atas district in Sarmi regency.

Yotam Siam, 20, was shot in the left leg while Douglas Yaas, 18, was shot in the right leg and the stomach. Douglas died on the way to Sarmi community health center.

Trikora Military Command spokesman Maj. CAJ GT Situmorang said that a gunfight erupted at 6 a.m. local time (4 a.m. Jakarta time) between a group of military soldiers and 10 rebels at Hut village.

Military personnel seized a rifle, a round of ammunition, a number of traditional weapons and documents on the Free Papua Organization (OPM).

Meanwhile, Papua Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Daud Sihombing said that he had not received any information about the shooting.

"You'd better ask the military," he said. -- JP