KPK Official Novel Baswedan Files Pretrial Motion Against Police
Jakarta. Senior Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) investigator Novel Baswedan has filed a pretrial motion against the National Police over his arrest, which his lawyers say is riddled with irregularities.
Novel’s lawyers filed the legal challenge at the South Jakarta District Court on Monday afternoon.
“There are several administration violations in the way the police handled the arrest and the detention,” Lawyer Muji Kartika Rahayu told reporters, adding no date for the hearing has been set.
Officers from the police’s detectives’ unit arrested Novel at his home in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, last Friday in connection with a long-settled case widely seen as having been dug up by the police as part of an attack on the KPK.
Novel has been accused of involvement in the death of an alleged thief 2004, during his time as chief of the detectives’ unit in Bengkulu — something he denies.
The police case against Novel has come under intense scrutiny over the past few days.
Investigators have been roundly criticised for some of the “evidence” they have confiscated, which has reportedly included two issues of Tempo magazine with lead articles titled “Targeting the Investigators” and “Why the Police Are Furious.”
“We are still investigating the evidence,” said Comr. Gen. Budi Waseso, the National Police’s chief of detectives. “If we later find it to be unrelated to the case, we would be happy to return it.”
Novel has claimed much of the evidence taken by police is completely unrelated to the case and has also accused them of making misleading claims, namely that he owns four luxury houses in Jakarta.
Novel said he owns one house in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, which he purchased for Rp 385 million ($30,000). He said he had another property in Semarang, Central Java, which he has gifted to his parents.
“The chief of detectives was making assumptions, and incorrect ones at that,” Novel told news portal Kompas.com. “I only have this house in Kelapa Gading and another in Semarang.”
Budi said his statement had been based on the fact that police officers had witnessed Novel visiting different houses.
The senior detective said on Friday: “He owns four houses, luxurious ones. This Novel is extraordinary.”
Following his arrest in Jakarta last Friday Novel was flown to Bengkulu for the case reconstruction that same day, despite his lawyers’ protest that Novel was not even on the scene when the incident happened.
Following massive outcry, President Joko Widodo instructed National Police Chief Gen. Badrodin Haiti to release Novel on Saturday, saying the arrest threatened to further damage ties between the police and KPK.
Novel’s lawyers have pointed out a number of irregularities in the arrest of the veteran investigator, including the lack of access to their client during his interrogation by police officers.
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Source: The Jakarta Globe