Tag Archives: kangaroo court

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

UPDATED

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.

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Buchtar Tabuni upon his release from Abepura prison (19/3) (photo: Melinda Ayomi/Kompasiana)
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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.

WestPapuaMedia

Buchtar Tabuni and friends are still in police custody

[Slightly abridged in translation by TAPOL]

Bintang Papua, 30 December 2010

Buchtar Tabuni and friends are still in police custody

Jayapura:

Two convicted prisoners charged with treason [makar], Buchtar Tabuni and Filep Karma, along with three other prisoners, Dominggus Pulalo, Alex Elopere and Lopes Katubaba are still in police custody. Buchtar and the others are in police custody and face charges of causing damage and incitement in Abepura Prison on 3 December 2010.

Confirming this in a press release on the security situation at the end
of 2010, Police Inspector-General Bekto Suprapto said that although
Buchtar and his colleagues were convicted prisoners and already serving sentences in Abepura Prison , they now had the additional status of facing new charges. ‘This means that their sentences will certainly be increased,’ he said. (sic)

The police chief said that with their removal from Abepura Prison,
conditions at Abepura Prison had improved. It was much easier now to
keep control of the prisoners in Abepura than it was when Buchtar and
the others were there, he was quoted as saying. ‘We have received
reports that the prison inmates are easier to control, they are more
obedient and now do as they are told, whereas before they were not easy to control.’

He said this was an indication that Buchtar and the others had been
inciting the other prisoners to be disobedient.

Asked about the number of prisoners who had escaped from the prison, he said that they were all on the wanted list [DPO] and their capture was the top priority for 2011 but he did not mention the number of prisoners involved. According to information from other sources, at least fifty prisoners have escaped from the prison.

He said that Buchtar and the others would face several new charges such as causing damage (Article 170) and incitement (Article 160), and could face up to seven years in prison.

When Bintang Papua requested permission to take photos of Buchtar and his friends in police custody, this was refused. The police officer said that this would only infuriate the general public.

As previously reported, Buchtar and his friends [allegedly] caused
damage after an inmate Wiron Wetipo disappeared from the prison and was shot dead by a joint patrol of the police and the army, while they were raiding a house in Tanah Hitam which is suspected as being the
headquarters of the OPM/TPN.

On hearing that Wiron had been shot dead, the six persons [not five
which is the number of names given in this article] now face charges for causing damage and inciting the other prisoners.

Filep Karma is serving a 15-year sentence while Buchtar is serving three years. The other prisoners are serving sentences of two or three years.

[Note how this senior police has no doubt that Buchtar and Karma will
be found guilty of the new charges they face. Such is the rule of law in Indonesia. – TAPOL]