Following the announcement of the verdict, the defence team said that they had not yet decided whether to launch an appeal against the sentence. ‘We are still thinking about how we will respond,’ said Gustav Kawar.
The defence team said that the sentence was light and the accused should have been released. However, according to Gustav Kawar. the panel of judges had given him a sentence as the result of external interference.
Bintang Papua, 25 September 2012
After further consideration, the defence team said that the verdict had not been decided independently and had been seriously influenced by the authorities, Gustav Kawar told journalists. This influence had come from the security forces, that is to say the army and the police This was the factor that had caused the judges to hesitate before reaching their verdict. There were also doubts because of the fact that the testimony from several of the witnesses was contradictory. Nor had it been proven that the accused had been acting in consort with others.
According to Gustav Kawar, the Criminal Procedural Code (KUHP) stipulates that if any element in the charge has been proven to be invalid, the entire charge must be declared invalid. The accused as well as his defence team said that they would consider what to do in the coming seven days.
Security measures round the court
On the day the verdict was announced, around 230 security forces from the local and district forces, including personnel from the police intelligence unit, Brimob were among those standing guard.
The chief of police said that several elements of the security forces had taken part in security at the time of the various hearings. He asserted that they had discovered sharp weapons among the crowd of people outside the courthouse following the earlier hearings but after measures had been taken, this did not occur during the latter hearings.
[Translated by TAPOL]
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