Judge Agus Widodo reads out his verdict in the pretrial motion by former United Development Party (PPP) chairman Romahurmuziy against the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) in the South Jakarta District Court on Tuesday. (Antara Photo/Yulius Satria Wijaya)

South Jakarta District Court Rejects Romahurmuziy's Pretrial Motion

BY :FANA SUPARMAN & CHRISTIAN LEE

MAY 15, 2019

Jakarta. The South Jakarta District Court rejected on Tuesday a pretrial motion filed against the national antigraft agency by Romahurmuziy, the former chairman of the United Development Party, or PPP.

The pretrial motion related to a bribery case involving Romahurmuziy, commonly known as Romy, and two officials of the Ministry of Religious Affairs – Haris Hasanuddin and Muhammad Muafaq Wiranadi – who were arrested by the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) at a hotel in Surabaya, East Java, on March 15.

Romy's lawyer, Maqdir Ismail, argued in the pretrial motion that his client's status as a suspect was invalid because the sting operation that led to his arrest had been illegal. Maqdir said the sting operation was not preceded by an investigation; that the wiretap placed on Romy was illegal because investigators had not obtained a warrant; and that there was not enough evidence to name him a suspect.

A few minutes before Judge Agus Widodo read his verdict, Maqdir approached the bench and told the judge that his client wished to withdraw the motion.

However, Evi Laila, a member of the KPK's legal team, requested the judge to continue reading his verdict because the trial had reached its final stages.

"The pretrial motion filed by the defendant is rejected entirely," Agus said in his verdict.

The judge said the investigation, seizure of evidence, wiretapping and arrest by KPK investigators had all been in accordance with the law.

The KPK expressed its satisfaction with the court's decision.

"We express our appreciation of the pretrial judge, because from his deliberation and decision, he drew a clear line of the limits where a pretrial [motion] can be filed. For example, an investigation cannot be included in a pretrial motion, and he also stated that the investigation process carried out by the KPK was legal. So we appreciate that and would like to thank him," KPK spokesman Febri Diansyah said at the agency's offices in South Jakarta on Tuesday.

Maqdir said his client is currently receiving treatment for a kidney ailment at the National Police Hospital in East Jakarta.

The KPK spokesman confirmed that Romy is currently hospitalized.

"[Romy] was brought to the National Police Hospital last night and his detention will be postponed because the doctor said he still needs to be under care," Febri said on Tuesday.

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