Jayapura, Jubi – The Manado Military Court III-17 on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, held a hearing to read the charges against two Indonesian Military (TNI) members who shot and killed two residents of Timika, Eden Bebari and Roni Wandik.
Military Prosecutor Yunus Ginting demanded the defendants, Second Lt. Inf Gabriel Bowie Wijaya and Chief Pvt. Sugi Harnoto, to be sentenced to 10 and 9 years in prison respectively and dismissed from military service.
Director of Association of Human Rights Advocates (PAHAM Papua) Gustaf R Kawer, lawyer for the families of the two shooting victims, said the families were disappointed with the military prosecutor's indictments as they were deemed too light.
"The prosecutor's demands are far from the expectations of the victim's parents that the perpetrator will be sentenced to 20 years in prison and dismissed from the military unit," said Kawer.
According to Kawer, Gabriel and Sugi were charged with murder as regulated in Article 338 in conjunction with Article 55 paragraph (1) of the Criminal Code, and using collective force to commit violence that took the lives of others as stipulated in Article 170 paragraph (2) of the Criminal Code. Kawer emphasized that the two acts were crimes against life.
Kawer hopes that the panel of judges at the Manado Military Court III-17 will give a higher sentence than the prosecutor's demands.
Eden Bebari and Roni Wandik were shot dead by four TNI soldiers including Gabriel and Sugi from the XIII/Merdeka Regional Military Command, who were being seconded in Papua. Eden Bebari and Roni Wandik were shot on April 13, 2020, while fishing in the PT Freeport Indonesia tailings disposal area in Mimika Regency, Papua.
Kawer said two other TNI soldiers involved in the case, Bahari Muhrim and Vicente de Oliveira, had not yet been brought to trial. The legal process for the two is separate from the legal process for Gabriel and Sugi at the Manado Military Court III – 17 as Bahari and de Oliveira are from IX/Udayana Regional Military Command.
Kawer assessed the legal process in the murders of Eden Bebari and Roni Wandik was indeed slow as the defendants had not even been sentenced after more than two years since the case occurred. "The case was only registered at the Manado Military Court III-17 in February 2022," he said.