Tue, 02 Aug 1994

Youth organization chief to be tried for gambling

JAKARTA (JP): Police said yesterday that seven people who were caught in a raid in a gambling den in West Jakarta late last week, including the head of a powerful youth organization, will be tried in court soon.

"We will send them to court according to the existing legal procedures," City Police Chief Maj. Gen. Mochammad Hindarto, said at the opening of police cadet education of 1994/95 in Lido, West Java, yesterday.

Hindarto was commenting on the arrest of seven gamblers Friday evening at a gambling den in West Jakarta.

Hindarto, expressing his deep gratitude to the public whom he said had helped police by giving a tip-off on the existence of the gambling den, promised that the case would be processed accordingly until the suspects were tried in court.

In a related development Lt. Col. Latief Rabar, a spokesman for the City Police, in the company of Lt. Col. Gories Mere, chief of the General Crime Office at the city police headquarters, told reporters that the arrest of the suspects, including the head of a youth organization, proved that everyone was equal in front of the law.

"In front of the law, all people are the same," said Latief.

About the arrest, Mere explained the seven suspects were caught redhanded playing rummy and macok (a card game) at 9 p.m. at a gambling den which also functioned as an office and plywood storehouse on Jl. Daan Mogot, West Jakarta.

The suspects were identified as Bud, Sun, Mus, Hal, Har, Ahi, Ab and Yor, a chief of a prominent youth organization.

Mere said he was perplexed over the coverage of the press on the case, which he said was very poor due to apparent fear for personal security as one of the suspects belonged to a powerful organization.

"We promise to protect you," he told reporters. "I shall call the Brimob (mobile brigade) officers to protect you in case you have trouble reporting it."


Mere said that a team of 20 officers led by Capt. Iwan from the city police headquarters, after receiving a tip-off from an anonymous person that "Lucky Plaza has moved to Jl. Daan Mogot, West Jakarta", immediately headed to the house.

The "Lucky Plaza" was a West Jakarta's gambling den raided by the Bakorstanasda (the Agency for Coordinating Supports for National Stability) and sealed down in May.

The well-armed officers then stormed the three-story house and handcuffed all people present at the third story of the premise, where the gambling was reportedly held.

"There was no resistance at all by the suspects," said Mere.

Police found Bud, Sun, Mus and Yor playing rummy, while the rest were playing macok.

Another seven individuals, said Latief, including five women, who were watching the games, were also driven to the city police headquarters along with the seven suspects.

Police sealed down the facility and confiscated two tables, several boxes of rummy cards, a set of macok cards, Rp 1,572,000 (US$731.8) in cash, and some pornographic discs and videos in the mini-theater on the third story of the house, and several boxes of coins.

The coins were used as gambling money during the play, with each of them valued at Rp 200 (US nine cents).

Preliminary investigation revealed that the storehouse, owned by Ab, the suspect in the macok game, had been used as a gambling den everyday from 8 p.m. to 12 p.m. over the past three months.

If found guilty, the seven suspects can be sentenced to four years imprisonment or Rp 10 million ($4,657) in fine at maximum. (jsk)