Wed, 10 Aug 1994

Yor's arrest was not politically motivated: Hendro

JAKARTA (JP): Chief of the Jakarta branch of the Agency for the Coordination of Support for National Stability (Bakorstanasda Jaya), Maj. Gen. Hendropriyono, yesterday denied that the arrest of Yor, the head of a leading national youth organization, was politically motivated.

"It's not true that Yor's arrest was politically motivated. He was arrested for gambling and gambling only," the two-star general who is popularly known as Hendro insisted.

Hendro's comment came in reaction to a statement made by the chairman of the central executive board of the Pemuda Pancasila youth organization, Yapto Suryosumarno, that Yor's arrest was inherent with political bias.

Yor was arrested along with six other persons less than two weeks ago at a gambling den on Jl. Daan Mogot, West Jakarta. The suspects were caught red-handed playing rummy and macok at a house which also functioned as an office and a warehouse for plywood.

During the raid, police also confiscated Rp 1,572,000 (US$725) in cash, gambling paraphernalia and pornographic discs.

Initially the arrest did not receive much attention from the press because many journalists feared that their personal safety would be threatened for publicizing the detention of the head of the notoriously raucous youth organization.

The fear was so great among journalists that Lt. Col. Gories Mere, chief of general crimes at city police headquarters, offered the services of the mobile brigade forces to protect them.

Commenting on the arrest, Jakarta's Deputy Chief of Police, Brig. Gen. Ismet Ibrahim yesterday explained that Yor's arrest was conducted in accordance to the proper procedures.

"He will undergo due process -- let's wait and see how it turns out," he said, while accompanying Hendro in a surprise inspection of incoming Indonesian housemaids at the Soekarno- Hatta airport yesterday.

Debt collector

Meanwhile, Moh. Assegaff, a prominent lawyer, said yesterday that the existence of debt-collectors was not entirely illegal.

"Many of them are quite successful in collecting owed money from debtors who are using the bureaucracy of the courts in order to stall payment of their debts," he said, as quoted by Antara.

Assegaff's was commenting on a remark made by Hendro that he would try to wipe-out the existence of debt-collectors.

Hendro believed that the methods of intimidation and physical coercion used by debt collectors were distressing to the community.

However Assegaff points out that not all debt-collectors resorted to such gruesome tactics.

"I was once visited by a very tough looking, muscular debt collector who had business with one of my clients. I explained my clients position and we talked in a very civilized manner," he said. (jsk/mds)