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Sri Bintang Pamungkas 'boycotts' investigation

Waspada - March 19, 1997

Jakarta – Sri Bintang Pamungkas, Julius Usman and Saleh Abdullah, suspects in a subversion case, Tuesday (18/3), have "boycotted" their investigation by the attorney general's office.

Sri Bintang and is companions said, they refuse to be questioned because the attorney general's office has found it difficult to show any initial proof for their arrest, detention and investigation.

Meanwhile a public relations officer for the attorney general, Suhartoyo SH in Jakarta on Tuesday told journalists that the investigation of Sri Bintang Pamungkas, Julius Usman and Saleh Abdullah will continue to be carried out although they have refused to answer questions.

According to Suhartoyo, the refusal to be questioned will damage the suspects because the if the investigations cannot be carried out, the suspects would be detained for longer.

"The investigation will continue although the suspects have refused [to answer questions - JB], and each question which is given by the investigating officer, which is answered or not will be used in the Preliminary Investigation Report (BAP)", he said.

They would still use the BAPs if the suspects refused to sign them at the end of the investigation, he added. Attorney general Singgih SH, earlier considered Sri Bintang's attitude too much, and the request for proof that they were involved in an act of subversion, will be presented to the court in the coming trial.

Defense lawyers for the accused are allowed to visit their clients, but the must get permission beforehand, said Suhartoyo in relation to whether there had been problems for Achmad Fauzi SH (Sri Bintang's lawyer) and Irianto Subiyakto SH (Julius Usman's lawyer), because they had not been able to meet with their clients, Tuesday. "What happened on Tuesday was Achmah Fauzi and Irianto, were not able to visit their clients because they were not able to meet with the officer authorised to give permission", he said and added, if the defense lawyers are patient, they will have the opportunity.

Attorney general Singgih SH accompanied by his staff on Tuesday received a visit from Mr John Shattuk, US assistant minister for foreign affairs for matters of democracy, human rights and labour. Shattuck's visit to Indonesia between March 16 and 21 is intended to obtain direct information on issues which have emerged in the US about Indonesia [human rights etc - JB]. He is scheduled to visit East Timor on March 19.

Meanwhile Sri Bintang's suit against the head of parliamentarian Moestahid Astari was not handed over to the police because his defense team had not been able to meet with him. Bintang is suing Moestahid because he feels slandered by statements he made in the mass media which said that Bintang had attacked the government.

[Abridged translation from Waspada - James Balowski]