Farouk Arnaz & Nur Yasmin, Jakarta – The police have arrested a man who appeared in a viral video claiming that the General Elections Commission, or KPU, had manipulated its data server in Singapore to ensure a win for Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and Ma'ruf Amin in April's presidential election.
The 54-year-old man has been identified by his initials, W.N. He has been in the police's wanted list since April and was finally arrested on Jalan Mangunrejan in Boyolali, Central Java, on June 11.
"[The man] is suspected of spreading fake news or false information that a KPU data server was manipulated to produce a vote count of 57 percent for one of the presidential tickets, and [also] for insulting and defaming a public body in Indonesia, in this case the KPU," Chief Comr. Rickynaldo Chairul, the head of the cybercrime division of the National Police, said in Jakarta on Monday.
W.N. was arrested after the police received a report from a KPU commissioner that someone had been spreading false information about a manipulated KPU server.
"The fake news had spread on social media including Facebook, Twitter and Youtube, which is very detrimental to the KPU as the election organizer. [The video was taken] on March 27 at around 2 p.m. at a house on Jalan Jagarahayu in Ciracas, Serang, Banten," Ricky said.
The video shows W.N. speaking at the home of former Serang district head Taufik Nuriman. The house was often used as a meeting point for Prabowo Subianto and Sandiaga Uno's campaign teams from Jakarta and Banten.
"W.N. was invited by the head of the Banten campaign team [for Prabowo and Sandiaga] to provide materials related to the [allegedly] manipulated KPU server. W.N. said the KPU was duplicating data and that one of KPU servers had been set up [to produce false data]," Ricky said.
After his arrest, W.N. has said his claim in the video was not supported by facts but based on information he knew from social media.
W.N. has been charged according to the Criminal Code and the 2016 Law on Information and Electronic Transaction. He is facing a maximum penalty of 10 years' imprisonment and a fine of up to Rp 750 million ($52,000).
Police had also arrested two social media influencers – E.W. in Ciracas, East Jakarta, and R.D., a housewife in Lampung, before arresting W.N.