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University in Medan slams police for investigating bodies used in medical study

Jakarta Globe - December 13, 2023

Panji Satrio, Medan – The Medicine Faculty of Prima Indonesia University in Medan has denounced the police for initiating a criminal investigation after discovering deceased bodies on campus.

The university clarified that these bodies were lawfully preserved for educational purposes, specifically for medical students' study of human anatomy.

Susanto, the deputy dean of the faculty, expressed discontent via YouTube after officers from the Medan Metropolitan Police "forced people to vacate the building" and "used intimidating tactics" to conduct a search.

"The Medicine Faculty operates an anatomy lab where cadavers are stored. There are preserved human bodies, a woman and four men, stored since 2005 under the tenure of then-chancellor Professor Dr Jakobus Tarigan," Susanto said in the video posted on Wednesday.

He said medical schools across Indonesia utilize cadavers for anatomy studies and that this practice is protected by the law.

According to Susanto, officers conducted an extensive search at the Sampul Street premises in the North Sumatra capital on Tuesday without prior consultation with university management.

"We regret the actions of certain officers from the Medan Metropolitan Police, as they failed to seek official clarification from the university's leadership," Susanto said.

"During the December 12 search, despite granting police permission to conduct the search, we were compelled to evacuate the premises. They threaten to cordon off the campus with police lines," he continued.

Throughout the day-long search, the police discovered and briefly inspected the cadavers before returning them to storage. Susanto noted that university officials did not receive a search warrant during this incident.

His remarks came after the Medan Metropolitan Police informed the press of their discovery of four men and a woman's bodies inside the university building, prompting the launch of an investigation.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/university-in-medan-slams-police-for-investigating-bodies-used-in-medical-stud