Tue, 15 Aug 2000

Witness in Soeharto case dies

JAKARTA (JP): A witness in former president Soeharto's alleged graft trial, Dharmais foundation treasurer Brig. Gen. (ret) Hedijanto, died from a brain hemorrhage on Monday morning after undergoing surgery the previous evening. He was 73.

Hedijanto is survived by his wife, Nuk Setiowati, and five children.

He was sworn in on July 14 at the Attorney General's Office along with 12 other witnesses.

Separately, South Jakarta Police chief Sr. Spt. Edward Aritonang said he would deploy more policemen at the South Jakarta District Court if the trial of the former strongman took place there.

Speaking after a coordination meeting with officials from the court, the Jakarta High Court, the South Jakarta Prosecutor's Office, district mayor Abdul Mufti and the district's military command officers, Aritonang said his office would take full responsibility for the trial's security.

"We deployed policemen here when the court received the dossiers of Soeharto's case on July 3 from the prosecutors," he said.

Head of the South Jakarta District Court Lalu Mariyun said the panel of judges were studying the case and had yet to decide the exact time and venue for the initial hearing, hinting that it would be by the end of the month.

Soeharto's lawyer, Juan Felix Tampubolon, was not allowed by the court's officials to attend the meeting. (bby)