Former Makassar mayor Ilham Arief Sriajuddin was sentenced to four years in prison for corruption. (Antara Photo/Hafidz Mubarak A.)

KPK Rearrests Former Makassar Mayor in Pretrial Bounceback

JULY 10, 2015

Jakarta. The Corruption Eradication Commission has rearrested Ilham Arief Sirajuddin, the former mayor of Makassar, South Sulawesi, who evaded indictment in May thanks to a pretrial ruling that found insufficient evidence for investigators to charge him.

His rearrest on Friday marks the first time that the antigraft commission, known as the KPK, has resumed proceedings against a corruption suspect cleared in a pretrial ruling.

KPK investigators detained Ilham, who served as Makassar mayor from 2006 to 2012, after nearly five hours of questioning at the KPK headquarters in South Jakarta. The move also came a day after a second pretrial motion was rejected by a Jakarta court.

“I have to respect this decision,” Ilham told reporters as he was taken away from the KPK headquarters to be jailed at a nearby Military Police barracks, where the KPK usually holds its detainees.

“Whatever has been decided must be respected and we must follow the procedure,” Ilham added.

The KPK initially named him a suspect in May 2014 for his alleged involvement in a corruption case centered on Makassar’s municipal water company during his term in office. In May of this year, Ilham filed a pretrial motion against the KPK’s decision to charge him, which was accepted by the South Jakarta District Court. The judge argued that the decision to name Ilham a suspect was invalid because the KPK lacked the minimum of two pieces of evidence as a basis for charging him.

Despite being forced to release Ilham, the KPK resumed its investigation, eventually amassing enough evidence to charge him a second time in June. Ilham filed an identical pretrial motion to have the charges dismissed again, but the same court that freed him the last time around ruled that there was no basis to his claim this time.