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Death penalty for former Indonesian police general over grisly murder of his bodyguard

Ferdy Sambo was formerly a two-star general in charge of police internal affairs. 


Death penalty for former Indonesian police general over grisly murder of his bodyguard
Former head of the internal affairs for Indonesia's national police Ferdy Sambo, has been found guilty of murdering bodyguard Nofriansyah Yosua Hutabarat in July 2022. (Photo: AFP/Aditya Aji)

JAKARTA: Former Indonesian two-star general Ferdy Sambo was sentenced to death on Monday (Feb 13) for murdering his bodyguard Nofriansyah Yosua Hutabarat in a high-profile case that has rocked the nation. 

In a televised trial, judge Wahyu Iman Santoso said that the former inspector general was guilty of being the mastermind behind the murder of Mr Hutabarat in July last year. 

He was charged with premeditated murder and destroying evidence. 

“The defendant Ferdy Sambo was legally and convincingly guilty of committing a crime, participating in premeditated murder and for acting in a way which resulted in the electronic system not working properly,” said Mr Santoso. He was referring to how the closed circuit television (CCTV) footage at Mr Sambo’s house was damaged, thus impeding the authorities from finding out about the circumstances of Mr Hutabarat's death. 

“Therefore, sentencing the accused with the death penalty,” said Mr Santoso. 

The judge also said that he found no mitigating factors to lighten the sentence.

Last month, the prosecutors recommended that a life sentence be imposed.

Sambo was the nation’s police chief for internal affairs when his bodyguard Mr Hutabarat was found dead at his home with multiple gunshot wounds, bruises and cuts on his body. 

The murder took place on Jul 8 but the police only disclosed the case on Jul 11.

The case has gripped the country and affected the reputation of the police. It prompted President Joko Widodo to order the police, among others, to take measures to regain public trust.  

Sambo was suspended from his position 10 days after the murder, and from the police force at the end of August.

The court was told that Sambo ordered the murder of 27-year-old Mr Hutabarat, who was a police sergeant assigned to guard Sambo’s family, after his wife Putri Candrawathi accused him of raping her. 

However, the couple has failed to present evidence to support the rape claim. 

Candrawathi is also on trial and her sentence is due later on Monday. Prosecutors recommended an eight-year imprisonment for her. 

Sambo is the first former high-ranking police officer to be sentenced to death in a criminal case. 

Besides Sambo and his wife, the case also involves three other main defendants Ricky Rizal, Kuat Ma’ruf and Richard Eliezer. 

Rizal was Candrawathi’s bodyguard while Ma’ruf was Sambo’s personal assistant. 

They will be sentenced on Tuesday for allegedly knowing about the murder in advance and being present at the scene when Mr Hutabarat was shot. 

Eliezer, who was also Sambo’s bodyguard at the time of the murder, is expected to be sentenced on Wednesday. 

He faces 12 years imprisonment for fatally shooting Mr Hutabarat on Sambo’s order. 

Source: CNA/ks(ih)


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