Tue, 09 Aug 1994

Tampubolon killers receive between 12 and 15 years

JAKARTA (JP): Four men found guilty of murdering Brig. Gen. Toga Manahan Franklin Tampubolon were sentenced to long prison terms by the East Jakarta district court yesterday.

Hendrik Setyawan, 24, Rusdi Abdul Rahman, 25, and Risdiyanto, 25, were each sentenced to 15 years for intentional murder, while Lukman Muhammad, 30, received 12 years.

"The defendants have been found without doubt to have committed the murder," said Presiding Judge Soeroto.

The defendants were found to be in violation of Articles 338 and 55, section 1 of the Criminal Code which deal with intentional murder.

Lukman received a lighter sentence because he was not charged with carrying a dangerous weapon at the scene of the crime.

All four were implicated in the killing of Brig. Gen. Tampubolon following a roadside argument near a Chinese cemetery in Cipinang, East Jakarta, on the evening of April 14.

Tampubolon died of multiple stab wounds to the right side of his body.

"The crime they committed is greatly distressing to society and thus they have to be punished," Soeroto said.

In delivering his verdict Soeroto said the court strives to be as fair as possible to all sides; the community, the defendants and the family of the deceased.

"The defendants are young and I believe that the sentences will allow them to rectify their ways and realize their mistakes so they may better serve society in the future," he said.


In addition, he noted that the defendants cooperation and sense of remorse during the proceedings contributed to easing the final verdict.

Nevertheless, Soeroto maintained that nothing warrants or excuses such a heinous crime.

Past testimony revealed that the murder occurred after Tampubolon's car nearly brushed the defendants on the narrow Jl. Griya Wartawan in Cipinang, East Jakarta.

The defendants apparently took offense at Tampubolon's driving and shouted at him. Tampubolon, a former commander of the Army's elite Kopassus paratroopers, responded by confronting the defendants.

The argument turned deadly as Tampubolon was stabbed 16 times. The autopsy report signed by Dr. Yuli Budiningsih of the University of Indonesia revealed that the stab wounds punctured Tampubolon's lungs and liver.

Judge Soeroto yesterday also ruled out the defense's argument that all four committed the crime in a state of unawareness due to their prior consumption of alcohol.

"It doesn't make sense for them being drunk or unaware of the situation since after drinking they then proceeded to play a game of billiards," he said.

Upon hearing the verdict, both Hendrik and Rusdi stood up and apologized to both the court and Tampubolon's family. When asked by the judge, both said they accepted the decision.

"It's up to the family whether to forgive these men, but I'm sure as religious people you will find it in your heart to do so," Soeroto told the family of the deceased.

Tampubolon's family, including his wife and children, displayed no emotion as they heard Soeroto's words. (mds)