Thu, 11 Mar 1999

Three alleged robbers shot dead

JAKARTA (JP): Police shot dead on early Wednesday morning three men believed to be members of an armed robbery gang, who last carried out an attack on Saturday.

The three dead suspects were identified as Ujang, 30, Rid, 35, and Arsin, 35, all from Subang, West Java, Jakarta Police spokesman Lt. Col. Zainuri Lubis said.

Lubis said the shootings took place from 3 a.m. and were prompted by the suspects' attempts to flee the arrest scenes.

"The three were shot in separate locations: Limus village, Cileungsi, Bogor; Tambun, Bekasi and in Cikarang also in Bekasi."

The hunt for the suspects started with the arrest of Idas, who later gave police a tip-off regarding his friends' hideouts. He was taken by police to pick up all his accomplices.

Ujang was shot as he tried to flee the scene and as the officers were on the way to another suspect's hideout, Lubis said.

"Police next went to collect Rid. He apparently tried to assault the officers, who were forced to shoot him."

Arsin was shot as he tried to flee the scene when asked to reveal another suspect's hideout, Lubis said.

"Other arrests will be made as soon as we have identified the other suspects."

Idas is detained at Bekasi Police station while two other suspects remain at large.

From the dead suspects, police confiscated two pistols, two daggers, five FN bullets and seven AK 47 bullets, believed to have been used in a series of armed robberies.

Idas' six-member group last targeted a Setu vegetable market trader, Sartibi, 29 and his father, Lamun, 55. Lamun sustained a serious head wound during the robbery on Saturday.

The gang used a back door entrance to break into the house of Sartibi. After entering the house, they pointed sharp weapons at the occupant and stole Rp 1.5 million from a cupboard.

Before the robbers left the scene, Lamun -- who lives next door -- hearing loud noises entered the house, interrupting the criminals. He challenged the robbers to fight him one by one.

The criminals beat and slashed the unarmed Lamun on the head with a machete.

One of the robbers fired two shots into the air to frighten nearby residents who rushed to the scene to provide help.

Lamun is receiving treatment at Karya Medika Hospital in Cibitung, Bekasi. (emf)