Stevani Wijaya, Jakarta – Six mid and high-ranking officers have been named suspects for allegedly obstructing justice in the ongoing investigation into the murder of Brigadier Nofriansyah Yosua Hutabarat, bringing the total number of policemen implicated in the case to nine, police said late Thursday.
In the wake of the investigation in early July, police said Yosua died in a shootout with a fellow officer at the official residence of their superior, Insp. Gen. Ferdy Sambo, in South Jakarta.
But mounting public pressures triggered by the suspected coverup of the case prompted the National Police to set up a new investigation team, which later found that Yosua was killed in a cold-blooded execution on Ferdy's order.
Comr. Chuck Putranto, one of the six new suspects, was dishonorably discharged after the ethics hearing later on Friday to suffer a similar fate to Ferdy.
The other five suspects include Brig. Gen. Hendra Kurniawan, Chief Comr. Agus Nurpatria, Adjunct Chief Comr. Arif Rahman, Comr. Baiquni, and Adjunct Comr. Irfan Widyanto.
Five of the suspects were former subordinates of Ferdy at the National Police Profession and Security Division, police spokesman Insp. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo said.
Irfan, the only suspect who didn't work for Ferdy before, was an investigator with the Criminal Investigation Agency who was involved in the preliminary probe into the murder case.
An internal investigation showed that the first responders and investigators might have tampered with the murder scene and physical evidence.
During the murder scene reenactment, Ferdy mimicked his tampering with the crime scene where he shot randomly at the wall to leave the impression that a shootout had occurred before Yosua was killed.
Police also bring charges of obstructing justice against Ferdy, who was earlier charged with premeditated murder, the spokesman said.
All the suspects are undergoing an ethics tribunal that will be concluded in the next three days.