Sat, 01 Oct 1994

Notorious pimp Hartono to be tried soon

JAKARTA (JP): The South Jakarta district court has said that Hartono Setyiawan, one of the most notorious pimps of high-class callgirls in Indonesia, will be tried soon.

Pelita, quoting a source at the court, reported yesterday that judges are still discussing the date of the first trial of this man who has managed to evade the law for over two decades.

"The opening of the trial is expected to be held as soon as next week," the source said.

The 42-year-old man, noted as an 'untouchable pimp', was picked up by police at his mansion in the elite Pondok Indah housing complex in South Jakarta in July.

Police said that Hartono was arrested following the arrest of six occupants of a high-class brothel on Jl. Prapanca, South Jakarta, three days earlier.

The six consisted of an assistant pimp, a receptionist and a driver of minivan used for the transportation of the callgirls from Jl. Prapanca to the customer's address.

The three call girls were caught red handed by police while offering their services to their guests at the Jakarta Hilton and the Century Park Hotel, both in Central Jakarta.

Police said they had no difficulty arresting Hartono this time, despite his reputation of being the man authorities were unable, or unwilling, to bring to justice.

His brothels in Jakarta, Surabaya, Bandung, Denpasar, and Semarang, reportedly only cater to upper-middle class people, including high ranking governmental officials.

The brothels provide callgirls at rates running between Rp 750,000 and Rp 1.5 million (US$348 - 698) for short-term service (three hours) and twice as much for the whole night. In an apparent attempt to lure more clients, payment could be made with credit cards.

Hartono could be charged with violating either Criminal Code chapters 296 or 506, which forbids sexual procurement and carries a maximum one year jail term.

Chapter 292 sees sexual procurement as a felony while in Chapter 506 it is considered a misdemeanor. The lesser charge was observed by the South Jakarta District Court in sentencing Hartono in 1986 for a similar crime. (09)