Tag Archives: Fake Criminal Trials

Timika Six plead for international intervention after sentence passed despite unproven case

by West Papua Media, with Oktovianus Pogau at SuaraPapua.com

April 18, 2013

Six West Papua National Committee (KNPB) activists from Timika were each sentenced to one year in prison on Tuesday by judges from the Assembly District Court in a trial deemed as opaque and farcical by observers.  Sentenced on charges of carrying dangerous weapons and makar (treason/subversion), defence lawyers insisted that the six non-violent activists had no case proven against them and will immediately be lodging an appeal.

The KNPB Timika 6 back in their cells, photo taken April 17, after trial hearing. From L-R, (photo KNPB/ West Papua Media)
The KNPB Timika 6 back in their cells, photo taken April 17, after trial hearing. (photo KNPB/ West Papua Media)

The six, Romario Yatipai, Steven Itlay, Yakonias Womsiwor, Paulus Marsyom, Alfred Marsyom and Yanto Awerkion, were arrested on October 24, 2012, amidst a spate of high publicity arrests of KNPB activists by the Australian-funded counter-terror unit Detachment 88.  The then-incoming Papua Police Chief, former Detachment 88 chief Tito Karnavian,  exploited the brutal arrests to increase justification for use of Detachment 88 against political activists at a time when OTK (unknown persons, now known as Orang Terlatih Khusus or Specially Trained Persons) killings were spiralling out of control across Papua.

Despite Jakarta pinning the blame for the killings on non-violent activists from the

KNPB Timika Activist  Romario Yatipai
KNPB Timika Activist Romario Yatipai

KNPB, no credible evidence had been able to prove KNPB responsibility despite highly politicised and farcical trial processes.  Most independent observers have linked responsibility for OTK incidents in Papua squarely in the hands of agents of the Indonesian special forces.

In SMS and email communications to West Papua Media from the prison before and after the trial, KNPB activist and detainee spokesman Romario Yatipai said that the assertions made by police were “Simply lies”.

“We are KNPB activist in Timika, West Papua. Indonesia Police jailed us with no reason.” – Romario Yatipai

“Indonesian police say that KNPB activist are criminals, terrorists, Makar (treason), separatist and so on,” Yatipai explained.

“Actually, KNPB activists in Timika always make peaceful demonstrations with all West Papuans.    We always make peaceful demonstrations to demand Referendum, as the best solution for West Papua,” he said.

Central to the police case was that the accused were allegedly carrying explosives to be used against Indonesian police posts and military targets, yet no evidence was furnished that could prove that the accused possessed explosives before t

Despite the Australian Federal Police providing Detachment 88 with state-of-the-art explosives and ballistic forensic testing capability to secure counter-terror convictions, none of this equipment or personnel were deployed in Papua for any of the OTK  trials, and no forensic proof was available at the Timika 6 trials that could have linked any of the defendants to use of explosives.

The trial heard wild accusations from prosecutors and police, but defence lawyers led by Gustaf Kawer, objected and expressed surprise when Yanto Awerkion (19) was sentenced.

As to who had ownership of explosives, Kawer explained to Suara Papua, none of the witnesses saw the defendant carrying explosives, but officials forced the defendant to claim possession of explosives.

“Since the moment of the defendant’s arrest along with five colleagues, there were absolutely no explosives he possessed … Yet when he reached the Mimika police station, the officers brought explosives and used it as evidence, and compelled the accused to confess  having an explosive. It’s very strange,” Kawer told Suara Papua.   “Our legal counsel will conduct a plea on April 23, 2013. The sixth defendant must be released immediately because of  not proven guilty, ”

Kawer also objected to the sentencing of the other defendants under makar provisions, saying the judges decision “did not correlate with the examination of the facts.”

“For the first case, it’s not proven that the five defendants were in the possession of sharp weapons.  And concerning the  treason related article, also during the course of investigation (there was) not any reference to it, but nevertheless the judge decided one year in prison by saying treason  that was proven – so we will appeal, ” Kawer told suarapapua. com.

After the defendants returned to the prison cells that have been their home since October 2012, they made a video appeal on their mobile phones, calling on the international community to do more to ensure that Indonesia ceases its persecution of peaceful political activists.

“We hope (the) International community, Amnesty International, IPWP, ILWP support us and pressure Indonesia government, Indonesia Police in Papua and Timika,” Yatipai told West Papua Media.  “West Papua activists, and all West Papuans need UN Observers,  UN Humanitarian workers, and International Journalists now in Papua.”

“Please support us with prayer and monitoring for us” said Yatipai.


Strange conduct in the Pastor Frederika murder trial

from our friends at SuaraPapua.com

Sunday March 3rd, 2013

Investigation by Oktovianus Pogau

There is much that is strange in the process of the trial over the killing of Pastor Fredrika Metalmeti (38) on November 21st 2012 in Boven Digoel, Papua.  The conduct of Military Tribunal III-19 Jayapura gives the impression of protecting the shooter. What is this process? Read below.

On November 21st 2012, a dark history began for the big Metalmeti and Imogoti families in Boven Digoel province and Merauke province, Papua, Pastor Frederika Metalmeti (38), first child of George Metalmeti (68) and Ida Imogoti, was found horribly killed on the Trans Asiki road, Boven Digoel, Papua.

Terdakwa oknum anggota TNI, Sertu Irfan (kanan) sedang mengenakan topi (Foto: Oktovianus Pogau/SP)
Unscrupulous members of the military, Defendant Sergeant Irfan (right) is wearing a hat (Photo: Oktovianus Pogau / SP)

Initially, at around 6:00am, the Head of Komba District, Manyu Waremba (46) together with his wife and child came to the scene of the crime, and found the victim’s body lying in bushes, near the Trans Asiki Road.

“My house is about 200 metres from the scene, early in the morning around 3:30am I heard someone calling for help accompanied by the sound of gunfire. Because I was scared, I intended to investigate in the morning together with my family” said Waremba, in Military Tribunal testimony Dock 5, Jayapura, 11th February 2013.

Waremba immediately reported his discovery of the corpse to three police officers on guard at the police post not far from the location of the body. The three police officers together with local residents eventually came to the scene. Indeed, the body of the woman lay bloody, motionless and stiff.

“After this I called the police station and together with local people we went to the scene, and we found the victim sprawled in bushes with much blood on her body” said Manggaprouw, member of Boven Digoel Police, in their testimony at the Military Tribunal, Jayapura.

Then, the Boven Digoel Police Chief immediately arrived at the scene, accompanied dozens of his men. When attending the crime scene, police found three pieces of ammunition, type FN 45, that were still active.

A pink helmet, belonging to the victim, was also found, as were jeans (denim) shorts. The victim’s shirt was opened to cover her face, which was a men’s shirt reading ‘Kwarcab Digoel District Scouts’.

At approximately 8:00am, police took the body to the Regional General Hospital for autopsy.

Before this, several nuns were asked to bath the victim who later became known to be Frederika Metalmeti, Pastor of the Bethel Church of Indonesia (GBI), Boven Digoel.

The nuns who bathed the corpse claimed to find three gunshot wounds on the victim’s body. The first of these shots on the side right of the head, the second on the left of the chest, and the third on the victim’s right arm.

According to the nuns, the face and back of the victim’s head had been shattered by a blow from a blunt object. Allegedly, the accused wanted to erase the remains of the gunshot wound on the victim’s head.

To determine the perpetrators of the shooting, the police summoned parties believed to have been close to the victim for questioning. There were seven witnesses from the Metalmeti family that were interrogated by Boven Digoel police.

One witness that was summoned was the victim’s younger sister, Helen Metalmeti (30). In testimony to the investigator, Helen told of all she know of the victim whilst she lived, including whom the victim was close to.

“Mr Lieutenant Colonal Eko Supriyanto, former commander of 1711/Boven Digoel, who now serves as the Head of Korem 174/ATW Merauke, was the person most close to the victim.  We know that my sister was dating him, and Mr Eko had come to our home to announce it,” said Helen, when meeting with suarapapua.com recently in Jayapura, Papua.

According to Helen, the relationship between the former Commander of 1711/Boven Digoel and the victim could be said to be very close, as there was an intention to hold a wedding in Malang, East Java, the home region of the former commander.

Whilst the Boven Digoel police were investigating the case which scandalised the residents of Boven Digoel, the Indonesian Military (TNI) in District Military Command 1171/Boven Digoel also conducted an investigation into several of their men.

In Boven Digoel district, no entity, including the Police and the Special Forces Task Force, has arms of type FN 45, except for members of the TNI Intelligence Unit, District Military Command 1711/Boven Digoel.

“After the Boven Digoel Police Chief Commander called the Dandim (Regional Military Commander), I together with several members also visited the scene to see the victim’s body, but because it had already been closed off by police, we could not enter,” said Captain Riki Pelani of District Military Command 1171/Boven Digoel Intelligence unit, when giving a testimony to the Military Tribunal on 19th February 2013.

According to Captain Riki, after knowing of the discovery of ammunition type FN 45, all men of the District Military Command 1171/Boven Digoel Intelligence Unit, totalling 12 people, were gathered to investigate each weapon.

Because, he says, if one has just recently been used to shoot with, then when smelt there will be the smell of smoke at the end of the weapon.

“I ordered First Sergeant (Sgt) Sumarlianto to gather all of our men’s guns, and after this I, together with (the) Dandim, investigated all of their guns in the room. Only the gun of Sgt Irfan was very clean and shiny because it had been cleaned with oil,” said Captain Riki.

According to Captain Riki, since then both himself and Dandim suspected Sgt Irfan as the culprit, as it also became known that Sgt Irfan was close with the victim for the past few months.

“We also received news that indeed Irfan was close with the victim. Dandim ordered us to hold Irfan, and First Sgt Marlianto and I were ordered to investigate Sgt Irfan,” asserted Captain Riki.

Then on November 22nd 2012, at 8:00am after morning assembly, Sgt Irfan was detained in the intelligence room and examined until 6:00pm that afternoon.

“Sgt Irfan did not confess during the questioning. At a meeting with Dandim at 7:00pm that evening, we received a report that Sgt Irfan had escaped.” said Captain Riki.

The escape strengthened the Dandim’s and his suspicions that the person who shot Frederika was Sgt Irfan, so he spread his men to several places to arrest Sgt Irfan.

During two days of searching, the members did not find Sgt Irfan. On the third day, 25th November 2012, he received news that the culprit was hiding in transit, in the Sudirman family home.

“Together with Dandim, several men and I immediately headed to the hiding place of the accused, and we immediately arrested him, and then took him to Korem 174/ATW Meruake for further investigation,” said Captain Riki.

Later, on his way to Korem 174/AWT Merauke. Sgtt Irfan confessed to the shooting of Pastor Frederika Metalmeti, on 21st November 2012.

How is the investigation of the accused progressing with the Police/Military in Merauke? Are the families being informed of the latest of the case investigation? Why did Sgt Irfan recklessly kill Pastor Frederika so sadistically?

Part 2 of this investigation will soon be presented.

Oktavianus Pogau is an independent Papuan journalist and founder of indigenous media outlet SuaraPapua.com.

Buchtar Tabuni released from Abepura prison after completing sentence

Buchtar Tabuni
Buchtar Tabuni Free Political Prisoner Campaign art (artwork: AK Rockefeller)

by West Papua Media

January 19, 2013


Buchtar Tabuni, the Chairman of the pro-independence National Parliament of West Papua, was released unexpectedly from Abepura prison around 12pm West Papua time today, to a waiting group of about fifty of his supporters from the West Papua National Committee (KNPB), according to multiple sources.

KNPB News reported that Tabuni sent an SMS message early this morning from prison. “To all the Free Papua fighters in Numbay, Sentani and its vicinity, at 9 this morning please pickup (at) Abepura LP”,  Buchtar’s message read.

Buchtar Tabuni upon his release from Abepura prison (19/3) (photo: Melinda Ayomi/Kompasiana)
Buchtar Tabuni being escorted (19/3) on long march from Abepura prison to Mako Tabuni’s site of execution in Waena (photo: Melinda Ayomi/Kompasiana)

Local sources today reported to West Papua Media that about fifty KNPB members then escorted a relieved Tabuni from Abepura prison on a long march to the assassination site of his friend and KNPB colleague, former KNPB Chairman Mako Tabuni.  Mako Tabuni was gunned down in broad daylight in a political assassination carried out by Australian-funded and trained Detachment 88 counter-terror officers outside the Perumnas 3 Dormitories in Waena on June 14, 2012, one week after Buchtar’s arrest.  He was also due to be taken to the graveside of Mako Tabuni in order to pay his respects to his slain friend, colleague and clansman.

Tabuni was arrested on 6 June 2012 during an upsurge in mysterious “OTK”  (orang Terlatih Khusus or “specially trained persons”) shootings, and publicly linked by then Papua Police Chief Bigman Tobing to the shootings.  However, according to statements by Tabuni’s lawyer during his criminal trial in September, the entire case was “nothing more than a set up.”

Lawyer Gustaf Kawer said at the time, “Buchtar had been linked to the shooting of Miron Wetipo but that case has already been solved, so it was clear that the authorities were trying to make a scapegoat of Buchtar.”

Tabuni was in custody when more shootings occurred, so “Buchtar was not in any way connected with those shootings. So instead of being charged with the shootings,” said Kawer during Tabuni’s trial, “he now faces the charge  of inflicting damage on the Abepura Prison in 2010, which means that he should have been arrested in 2010.”

In a highly opaque trial closed to independent witnesses, and marked by significant intimidation of journalists by police and court officials, Tabuni was convicted on a charge “for having allegedly inflicted damage on the Abepura prison in December 2011,” and “for exchanging harsh words with prison warders.”

In recent months, Tabuni’s health had suffered from his incarceration in Abepura prison, with complaints of respiratory illness, gastric diseases and dangerously low blood pressure, from his incarceration in atrocious and unhygienic conditions by Indonesian colonial prison authorities.

According to credible sources, Tabuni is spending the next days with family, friends and colleagues from KNPB to mourn the losses of his comrades, and to discuss and consider the next steps in the campaign for justice in West Papua.


Indonesian government to act on Papuan political prisoners

via Tapol
5 Dec 2012
Indonesian government to act on Papuan political prisoners
By: KBR68H, translated by TAPOL

Names of 23 Papuan political prisoners submitted to Komnas HAM

3 December 2001

Solidarity for Humanitarian and Human Rights Violations has submitted information regarding 23 political prisoners to Komnas HAM (the National Human Rights Commission).

Earlier, Komnas HAM planned to set up a team to resolve the cases of political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua. The spokesman for SKP Papua, Mathius Murib, said that information regarding the prisoners, including their arrest, the time they have spent in custody and their conditions in prison was submitted. He said that in many cases, there was no legal basis for their being charged for treason and that their imprisonment was in violation of their human rights

“We have supplied data relating to a number of prisoners being held in prisons in Papua. Detailing how many prisoners there are and for how many years they have been held. Altogether, we have submitted such information regarding 23 political prisoners. We greatly appreciate this support and the action.”

Earlier on, Komnas HAM planned to set up a team to resolve the cases of political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua. The purpose was to review the status of those being held in prison. This would include considering a reduction in the length of their sentences.

To read the article in Indonesian on the KBR68H website, click here.

Komnas HAM is seeking Clemency for Papuan Political Prisoners

4 December 2012

Komnas HAM, the National Human Rights Commission intends to struggle to ensure that all political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua are granted clemency or a reduction in sentence.

The chairman of Monitoring and Investigating Human Rights Violations, Natalius Pigai, said that Komnas HAM plans to set up a special team next January to identify the cases of political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua, together with the Ministry of Law and Human Rights.

“This special team will also be entrusted with the task of granting clemency or reduction of sentences for political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua. We will be undertaking this in collaboration with the Ministry of Law and Human Rights,” said Natalius.

He went on to say that this special team would do everything possible to improve the general environment and facilities in all the prisons in Papua. This will include ensuring that every tapol/napol receives whatever healthcare is required.

To read the article in Indonesian on the KBR68H website, click here.

Law and Human Rights Ministry to check status of around 20 Papuan political prisoners

4 December 2012

The Ministry of Law and Human Rights plans to check the status of around twenty political prisoners in Papua. This decision follows their intention to resolve the cases of political detainees and convicted political prisoners.

A spokesman of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, Martua Batubara, said that those who are serving sentences will be given remissions (a reduction of sentence) in accordance with the law.

As for the Komnas HAM, it can only make recommendations.

“We intend to check in the prisons as well as to check with the Ministry of Law and Human Rights to find out which prisoners are serving sentences and which are prisoners whose cases are still being processed. We don’t know which prisoners they are talking about (gap with question mark perhaps indicating something that is illegible) or whether it is true that Komnas HAM  only has the authority to investigate and then make recommendations to the authorities in charge of the prisoners.”

Previously, Solidarity for Humanitarian and Human Rights Violations in Papua submitted information about 23 political prisoners to Komnas HAM. This was done to complete the information available to Komnas HAM, following a plan to set up a team to resolve the cases of political detainees and convicted political prisoners in Papua. The purpose is for there to be a review of the status of all those who are currently being held in detention. This would also include seeking a reduction in the sentences now being served by all those who are currently being held in prison in Papua.

To read the article in Indonesian on the KBR68H website, click here.

Lawyer complains of lack of professionalism as Buchtar trial



JUBI, 10 September 2012The tight security by the police round the courthouse  while the trial of Buchtar Tabuni was  in progress was described as being unprofessional by a member of the legal team of the defendant.

Gustaf Kawer said: ‘The tight security round the courthouse  is a violation of the basic principles  of court practice. This is a public trial which means that anyone can come and attend it.  Excessive security  while the trial is in progress is very unprofessional,’ said Kawer.

Buchtar Tabuni is charged with having caused damage to the Abepura Prison on 3 December. The trial hearing was suspended and the trial will resume on 13 September, because witnesses did not turn up for the hearing as a result of which the lawyers  promised that they would produce the witnesses, said Matius Murib.

The hearing on 13 September will be the last occasion  for the witnesses to appear. The deputy director of the prison is adequate and will not be summoned again after having be summoned to appear three times.

Kawer said that the proceedings were not conducted professionally; the witnesses should have appeared at the appointed time but that did not happen. Furthermore, he said, the judge should behave  independently in the way he chairs the court and should not take sides either with the state or the victim..

At today’s hearing of the Buchtar Tabuni trial, there were forty people from Dalmas and the Jayapura police command, who were fully backed up  by personnel from the Abepura police command, who were headed by the head of the Jayapura police command, Kiki Kurnia.

[Translated by TAPOL]