Sun, 14 Dec 2003

Nabbed man 'not terror suspect'

JAKARTA: Police said here on Saturday they had established that the man they had apprehended a day earlier was in fact not Noordin Moch. Top, one of two key terror suspects still at large.

The name of the man was actually Hazli Saleh and a closer physical examination showed that he did not resemble Noordin, West Java Police detective officer Comr. Suhirman said.

However, he said Hazli would continue to be detained on charges of fraud he allegedly committed in Cirebon regency.

One of his victims, Sumiasih, came on Saturday to the West Police headquarters, where Hazli was being questioned, claiming she was once deceived by the suspect.

"He offered to work in partnership with me in garment home- industry, but after I gave him money he later disappeared," she told journalists in Bandung.

Sumiasih claimed she lost Rp 7 million (US$823) and a motorcycle due to Hazli's deception.

But the police said Hazli insisted on claiming he was Noordin Moch. Top who had escaped police arrest in Bandung along with fellow bomb maker Dr. Azahari Husin.

Noordin and Azahari are on the run and are the top suspects in the Aug. 5 bombing of J.W. Marriott Hotel in Jakarta that left 13 people dead.

They are also charged with playing a key role in the bombing of two night spots in Kuta, Bali's famous tourist spot on Oct. 12, 2002, that killed 202 people, mostly tourists.

-- JP