Five different crimes in Mimika murder and mutilation

Litigation Coordinator of the Civil Society Coalition for Law Enforcement and Human Rights in Papua, Emanuel Gobay (center) delivers a press statement with Papuan PAHAM activists, Yoksan Balan, and Papuan ELSHAM activist Persila Heselo in Jayapura City, Monday (12/9/2022). - Jubi/Hengky Yeimo

Jayapura, Jubi – Coordinator of the Civil Society Coalition for the Enforcement of Law and Human Rights in Papua Emanuel Gobay said there were at least five different crimes committed by the perpetrators of the murder and mutilation of four Nduga residents in Mimika Regency.

The Mimika murder occurred in Settlement Unit 1, Mimika Baru District on August 22, 2022. The four victims were Arnold Lokbere, Leman Nirigi, Irian Nirigi, and Atis Tini.

Gobay said the five different crimes were found in the investigation of law enforcement officials, as well as investigations of the Coalition consisting of LBH Papua, PAHAM Papua, ALDP, ELSHAM Papua, PBH Cenderawasih, LBH Kyadayun Biak, and LBH Kaki Abu Sorong.

“First, there was a sale and purchase of weapons between Indonesian Military [TNI] personnel and civilians. Second, TNI personnel allegedly shot the victim dead. Third, the murder is premeditated. Fourth, there is body mutilation. Fifth, the case is considered a gross human rights violation,” said Gobay during a press conference in Jayapura City on Monday, September 12, 2022.

According to Gobay, attempted weapons transactions or handing over or transferring firearms, as stated by the investigator of the case, are classified as a crime by Emergency Law No. 12/1951.

Gobay said a number of soldiers of the Raider/20 Ima Jaya Keramo Infantry Brigade allegedly used firearms to shoot the victims, and the act is classified as a crime by the same law.

“There is a sale and purchase of firearms, the abuse of firearms, therefore the perpetrators are subject to Emergency Law No. 12/1951,” said Gobay.

Gobay said the reconstruction of the murder and mutilation showed that eight Raider/20 Ima Jaya Keramo Infantry Brigade and four civilians planned the murder. “They violated Article 340 of the Criminal Code by planning to take the life of other people. The act is punishable by a death penalty or life imprisonment,” he said.

According to Gobay, the murder case has fulfilled the elements of gross human rights violations because it involved two higher rank officers and their subordinates.

Gobay said there was a command from officers to their subordinates because there were suspects who held the rank of major, captain, and sergeant. “It is a gross human rights violation as there is more than one TNI personnel, there is clearly a command. The element of the crime against humanity has been checked,” he said.

He added the investigation of the case should seek to reveal the alleged gross human rights violations in the case. Gobay also underlined that various crimes allegedly committed by TNI soldiers should be tried in a general court or human rights court. He criticized that many cases of violence by TNI soldiers were tried in military courts, and failed to give a deterrent effect, prompting the crime to recur.

“A trial in military court will not provide a deterrent effect for the perpetrators. That way, the State instead provides opportunities for perpetrators to do the same thing,” he said.

Gobay encouraged the Papua Office of the National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) Papua to continue overseeing the legal process of the case. “We ask Komnas HAM Papua not to stop at the disclosure of the perpetrators but must be to the point it can provide a sense of justice for the families of the victims,” he said. (*)

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