‘Driving Rubicon Nauseates Me’: Ex-Taxman Explains Why Troubled Son Got the SUV
Jakarta. Former taxman and graft suspect Rafael Alun Trisambodo tried to defend his troubled son who came under public inquiry for assaulting a teenager and flaunting luxury vehicles including American-made SUV Rubicon Jeep on social media posts.
The son, Mario Dandy Satriyo, is currently in police custody on violent assault charges.
Speaking in a lengthy interview with news broadcaster BTV aired on Friday evening, Rafael claimed that he bought the SUV for himself in August 2021 and it only ended in his son’s hands after he entrusted the car to his older brother to be sold.
“I bought that Rubicon in August 2021 for myself. It was my birthday and I wanted to buy a present for myself. But I immediately found that I wasn’t comfortable driving it. The car nauseated me,” Rafael told BTV’s Fristian Griec.
“I offered the car to my brother who took it in December 2021.”
Rafael said his brother owned a car dealership and knew how to make a profit from selling the 2013 Rubicon Jeep.
“My son hung around with rich people so my brother asked Dandy to take the car with him to get prospective buyers,” Rafael said.
Media reports said earlier that the luxury SUV was registered under a person whose address is on a narrow aisle in Jakarta that can’t accommodate a car, triggering speculations that Rafael might have used a nominee to camouflage his ownership.
But Rafael denied covering–up his ownership of the car and insisted that he bought the used car and resold it to his brother in just a few months.
Mario, in his early 20s, was arrested earlier this month after a video showing him kicking the head of his motionless victim went viral. Within weeks, his father became a corruption suspect for a different case.
Rafael told BTV that his son’s legal case cost him a promotion, saying he was at the final stage of being appointed as the next provincial tax office head in North Sumatra when Mario was detained.
He received his dismissal letter from the Finance Ministry on March 14, 33 years after serving as a taxman.
“Everything I have built now falls to pieces,” he said.
Earlier in the day, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) confirmed that it has seized tens of luxury bags of top designer brands including Hermes from Rafael’s home at an upscale housing complex in South Jakarta.
The commission also seized cash in foreign currencies worth tens of billions of rupiah from safe deposit boxes registered under Rafael.
In the exclusive interview, Rafael admitted that he didn’t mention the huge cash in his public filing and tax returns.
The Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Center, or PPATK, previously revealed suspicious transactions totaling Rp 500 billion involving Rafael, his family members, and affiliates over the past few years.