Indonesia

Indonesia sentences 6 inmates to death over deadly prison riot

Reuters
Indonesia sentences 6 inmates to death over deadly prison riot

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The East Jakarta District court sentences the 6 prisoners under the country's terrorism law

Indonesia has sentenced to death 6 prisoners for involvement in a deadly 2018 riot and hostage crisis at a maximum security jail, a court official said on Thursday, April 22, an incident described by security officials at the time as “an act of terror”.

The riot at the Mako Brimob detention facility in Depok in Jakarta’s outskirts resulted in the deaths of five members of Indonesia’s elite counter-terrorism force detachment, Densus 88, during the 36-hour standoff.

The East Jakarta District court sentenced the 6 prisoners late on Wednesday under the country’s terrorism law, said Alex Adam Faisal, the court spokesman, adding all 6 accepted the verdict and did not immediately file appeals.

Islamic State at the time said via its Amaq news agency that it was responsible for the incident, but Indonesian police dismissed that claim.

According to local media reports, most of the victims had their throats slashed.

More than 150 inmates were involved in the riot and dozens were able to obtain weapons, including rifles, which were raided from a storage area for confiscated arms.

Indonesia has struggled to counter militancy in prisons, according to security analyst Stanislaus Riyanta, who said some extremists command influence in jails and have succeeded in radicalising other inmates.

While the use of capital punishment has declined globally, Indonesia sentenced 117 people to death in 2020, mostly for drug-related offenses, an increase of 46% according to Amnesty International’s 2020 Death Penalty Report. – Rappler.com