Buni Yani, pictured, is accused of slandering Jakarta Governor Basuki 'Ahok' Tjahaja Purnama by uploading an edited video in which the governor appeared to insult the Koran. (Antara Photo/Puspa Perwitasari)

Buni Yani Deliberately Tries to Defame Ahok: Police Lawyer


DECEMBER 16, 2016

Jakarta. Chief Comr. Agus Rohmat of the Jakarta Police's legal team, said Buni Yani, the man accused of uploading a heavily edited video of a speech by Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama that resulted in blasphemy allegations against him, had done so intentionally to make the video go viral and discredit the governor.

Agus made the comment before a pretrial hearing for Buni — who is now accused of slander against Ahok — at the South Jakarta District Court on Friday (16/12), where judges were scheduled to hear testimonies from experts presented by the police.


"According to our expert witness, Buni posted the video with the intention to make it go viral and defame Ahok," Agus said at the courthouse.

The police lawyer said Article 28 of Indonesia's Electronic Information and Transactions (ITE) Law forbids individuals and organizations from intentionally spreading information that discriminates against people on the basis of race, religion, ethnicity or social background.

"Since [Buni] uploaded the video himself, he is responsible for it. He would've known about the implications," Agus said.

Teguh said after the pretrial hearing that only the judges can decide whether Buni had any intention to commit slander against Ahok.

"The judges will have to weigh the evidence. The ITE Law says that 'logging into' a social media account constitutes an intention to spread information to the public, but it's not my place to say whether what Buni did violated Article 28, Paragraph 2 of the law, and that he did it deliberately to defame Ahok," Teguh said.

Buni filed a pretrial motion after the Jakarta Police declared him a suspect in a defamation case against Ahok. Buni is facing a maximum of six years in prison, or a Rp 1 billion ($75,000) fine.