Indonesia’s anti-terrorism squad Densus 88 staged raids across Java on Wednesday, cracking down on a terrorism cell accused of using the proceeds from numerous armed robberies to fund activities in Poso, Central Sulawesi.
Police killed six suspects and arrested 19 others in raids in Kendal, Central Java, Sumedang, West Java, Bandung and Banten, a source in Densus 88 told the Jakarta Globe. The men were reportedly part of a terrorist network responsible for importing arms from the Philippines and had worked with convicted terrorist Abu Omar, the source said.
“They managed to collect Rp 1.8 billion from the robberies, we can’t underestimate this number because they would keep on doing this to survive, they were also involved in an arson in Glodok Market in Jakarta,” he said.
Densus 88 met resistance during a raid of a home in Bandung, West Java, on Wednesday. Police and terrorism suspects exchanged fire during a tense hours-long standoff that left three suspects dead and two behind bars.
The Bandung standoff was reportedly linked to several raids in small cities throughout Java. It is unknown if the men were associated with any known terrorist organizations, but a source said they had worked closely with some of Indonesia’s most-wanted men.
“They admitted that the robberies were done to collect money to fund the militants’ activities in the Eastern Indonesia led by Autad Rawa and Santoso,” he said.
The men were recruited by Abu Roban, who was killed in a shootout with police in Kendal, Central Java, yesterday. They were recruited from West Java and Banten.
“This group was united in a Hakalah [Koran recital group] in Ciledug, Tangerang which was led by Abu Roban,” the source said. “They are also connected to terrorist group in Bandung led by William Maksum.”
William was captured alive during a raid in Sumedang, West Java, on Wednesday. The police confiscated a revolver and 200 ammunitions from the alleged terrorist leader.