Wed, 28 Jun 2000

Prosecutor wants 15-year terms for counterfeit gang

JAKARTA (JP): A prosecutor at Central Jakarta District Court demanded a panel of judges on Tuesday to sentence three men to 15 years in jail for counterfeiting Rp 50,000 banknotes worth 19.2 billion.

In the first hearing, prosecutor Soejitno told the trial, presided over by judge Rasadi Salmun, that the defendants -- Yustinus Kasminto, 55, Junie, 27, and Ardi Sukarman, alias A Khui -- had violated Article 244 of the Criminal Code on counterfeit money.

"The defendants counterfeited the bills which are (supposed to be officially) produced by Bank Indonesia and had meant to distribute them as real money," the prosecutor said.

Soejitno told the hearing that the forged banknotes made by the defendants were in the form of the 1995 edition which carries the face of former president Soeharto.

The defendants, he said, destroyed Rp 15.8 billion of the fake rupiah after they learned it was poor quality.

The remaining Rp 3.4 billion was found with two men,he said. The first Rp 1.6 billion was in A Khui's possession, and the Rp 1.8 billion was with a man, who was identified as Tyasno Sudarto, and is still at large, Soejitno said.

The prosecutor said the suspects in the case numbered ten. Besides Tyasno, the court was also preparing to try six other suspects at a different trial.

They are Ismail Putra, reportedly the leader of the group, Eddy Kereh, who allegedly coordinated security, Ramelan, allegedly the technician in charge of printing, Bambang, Triyono and Slamet, the reported machine operators, and housemaid Tono, Soejitno said.

The ten were arrested at printing company Jaya Abadi Prima on Jl. Palmerah Barat No. 141 in Central Jakarta in February.

Yustinus and Junie, who both appeared in court on Tuesday, are university graduates, he said.

A Khui could not appear in court as he was in intensive care at Mediros Hospital in Pulogadung, East Jakarta, Soejitno said.

Yustinus and Junie, he said, provided the printer for the business. The two agreed that 3 percent of the output would go to Junie and 7 percent to Yustinus, he said.

Soejitno said A Khui financed the business with Rp 500 million to purchase items for printing and other necessary material.

He said with A Khui's money, Ismail ordered film for the fake banknotes from a company in Bandung, West Java, and demanded Edy and A Khui to get it on July 25 last year.

Ismail also provided 16 reams of Omega printing paper, which was used to produce the counterfeited rupiah, he said. Each ream, consisting of 500 pages, cost Rp 125 million and could produce Rp 1.2 billion worth of Rp 50,000 banknotes, Soejitno said.

The group, he said, labeled the forged money with six serial numbers, namely FRM, LZN, LZO, RPM, TWR and YBD.

The trial was adjourned until next Wednesday.

At a separate hearing on Tuesday at the same district court, defendant Hendrayana, 41, faces a possible 15 years imprisonment if he is convicted of possessing counterfeit money worth Rp 700 million in Rp 50,000 banknotes, and of trying to sell them.

"The defendant has violated Article 245 of the Criminal Code," prosecutor Amri told the hearing, presided over by judge Sri Endang Murwati.

Amri told the hearing that Hendrayana had met with defendant Dadang, who is to be tried in a separate trial, in Bandung, West Java, in September last year.

Dadang allegedly handed over Rp 300 million in counterfeit notes to Hendrayana to "perfect the quality of the money," in Jakarta, Amri said. Dadang later provided Hendrayana with another Rp 400 million, he said. (ylt)