Police anti-terror unit Densus 88 found two high-explosive pipe bombs during a raid on Wanky Cell, a cellphone accessories shop thought to be a terrorist hideout, in Bekasi on Thursday. (Suara Pembaruan Photo/Mikael Niman)

Police Arrest Leader of Terrorist Cell in Bekasi


MAY 10, 2019

Jakarta. Police anti-terror unit Densus 88 has arrested the leader of Islamic State-affiliated organization Jamaah Ansharut Daulah, or JAD, in Bekasi, West Java, on Wednesday. The terror suspect, named by police as E.Y. a.k.a. Rafli or Eky, is reportedly a bomb maker and financier for the organization, a police spokesman said on Thursday.

Wednesday's arrest was linked to last weekend's raids in Bekasi and Tegal, Central Java, during which Densus 88 captured six suspected terrorists including Solihin, who founded JAD cells in Bekasi and Poso, Central Sulawesi, after the 2016 Thamrin bombing in Jakarta.


Densus 88 arrested Rafli in Kalimalang, East Jakarta, and 18-yer-old Y.N., a.k.a. Kautsar, in Bekasi on Wednesday, National Police spokesman Brig. Gen. Dedi Prasetyo said.

In the last week, Densus 88 has arrested eight terror suspects. Another one killed himself when he detonated a home-made bomb while police tried to capture him.

"Rafli is the amir [leader] of JAD's Bekasi cell. His predecessor was arrested a few years ago after the Thamrin bombing. He is also the financier for S.L. [Solihin]. He provided the money for Solihin and his group to buy explosives," Dedi said.

Densus 88 raided Rafli's cellphone and computer accessories shop Wanky Cell in North Bekasi on Wednesday. At least two small home-made bombs containing the highly explosive ingredient triaceton triperoxide, also known as the "Mother of Satan," were found at the shop. 

"We found two high-explosive pipe bombs. They were small but as powerful as the bombs used in Sibolga,” Dedi said,

Dedi was referring to an incident in Sibolga, North Sumatra, in March when a female JAD member blew herself up and her two children during a police raid.

Rafli's Background

Rafli is a bombmaking expert who taught Solihin and two other terror suspects, S and T, how to assemble a bomb. Solihin and S were arrested last weekend in Bekasi and T was the terrorist who blew himself up trying to evade capture.

Rafli also recruited new members for the terrorist cell. Kautsar, who just graduated from high school last year, was recruited by him. According to Dedi, Kautsar was a champion karate athlete at national level at least twice. He was brainwashed by Rafli to join JAD.

"[Rafli] streamed his bai’at [taking the oath ceremony] as the amir of JAD Bekasi on social media. He is very powerful among JAD members in Bekasi because he has money and he can recruit new members," Dedi said.

The police spokesman did not say which social media platform Rafli used to stream the bai'at ceremony.

Rafli also taught Kautsar how to make a bomb. Police found a bombmaking manual and a guide on how to use a remote control to detonate a bomb on Kautsar’s laptop, Dedi said.

According to the police, Rafli's terror cell was waiting for chaos to reign in Jakarta after the result of the presidential election is announced before they launch an attack. The General Elections Commission (KPU) is expected to announce its official vote tally on May 22.