Housemaid Susi greets her boss, murder defendant Ferdy Sambo by kissing his hand as she appears at the South Jakarta District Court as a witness on November 8, 2022. (Joanito De Saojoao)

AGO Asks Broadcasters to Stop Live Courtroom Coverage in Ferdy Sambo Trials

NOVEMBER 20, 2022

Jakarta. The Attorney General’s Office has appealed for news broadcasters to stop live reporting from courtroom hearings in the murder trial against Ferdy Sambo and other defendants to allow a fair trial.

AGO spokesman Ketut Sumedana argued that if future witnesses follow the hearings from TV, they are likely to be influenced by what they hear from the previous witnesses.

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“Don’t let those witnesses get informed directly or indirectly before delivering testimonies,” Ketut was quoted by Kompas news website on Sunday.

Ferdy and four other defendants including his wife Putri Candrawathi are being tried for the murder of police officer Nofriansyah Yosua Hutabarat.

Prosecutors have summoned tens of witnesses to testify in marathon hearings since last month.

In addition to the murder trial, the South Jakarta District Court also tried seven former officers including Ferdy on charges of obstruction of justice related to alleged cover-ups and destruction of evidence in the initial police investigation into the murder case.

Ferdy is indicted of ordering the July 8 murder and he could face the death sentence if convicted. He has repeatedly said Yosua was killed for harassing his wife but so far he hasn’t offered strong evidence to support his claim.

The AGO spokesman said a compromised witness could put prosecutors in a very difficult position to prove the murder case, urging broadcasters to honor prosecutors’ request.

“It’s okay to get the footage from the TV pool system as long as it’s not aired live,” Ketut said. 

“Or maybe the audio is muted so it doesn’t influence witnesses.”

The hearing will resume on Monday after being adjourned for this whole week.

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