INDONESIA: INDONESIAN COURTS RELEASE ALL 124 SUPPORTERS OF OPPOSITION LEADER MEGAWATI SUKARNOPUTRI, IMPRISONED AFTER JULY RIOTSRecord ID: 639759
- Title: INDONESIA: INDONESIAN COURTS RELEASE ALL 124 SUPPORTERS OF OPPOSITION LEADER MEGAWATI SUKARNOPUTRI, IMPRISONED AFTER JULY RIOTS
- Date: 27th November 1996
- Summary: JAKARTA, INDONESIA (NOVEMBER 27, 1996) (RTV - ACCESS ALL) 1. SV/SLV EXTERIOR COURT; SECURITY; DOGS (4 SHOTS) 0.18 2. SV OPPOSITION SUPPORTERS OUT OF VAN, SHOUTING, WAVING POSTERS AND PHOTOGRAPHS 0.38 3. SV OPPOSITION FIGURE MEGAWATI SUKARNOPUTRI , OF THE INDONESIAN DEMOCRATIC PARTY (PDI) GETTING OUT OF CAR (2 SHOTS) 0.58 4. SV INTERIOR COURT OPPOSITION SUPPORTERS SEATED; PRESS; LAWYERS (5 SHOTS) 1.22 5. SV/MCU JUDGE READS OUT RELEASE ORDER; OPPOSITION SUPPORTERS CELEBRATE, SOME WHO WERE FOUND GUILTY BUT HAD SERVED TIME IN JAIL SHOUTING ANGRILY, ONE WOMAN, SANDRA FERTASARI CRYING, CHAOTIC SCENES (7 SHOTS) 1.53 6. SV MEGAWATI LEAVES COURT,SHAKING HANDS WITH SUPPORTERS 2.00 7. SV SECURITY; OPPOSITION SUPPORTERS LEAVING COURT CELEBRATING (2 SHOTS) 2.09 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.
- Reuters ID: LVA9DEDY8UEOIQSZRHL6BX7CWFVP
- Location: JAKARTA, INDONESIA
- Country: Indonesia
- Duration: 00:02:09
- Story Text: INTRO: Indonesian courts have released all 124 supporters of opposition figure Megawati Sukarnoputri imprisoned since riots in July.
Judges delivering 10 separate verdicts in the State Court acquitted nine of the accused and sentenced the other 115 to time already served in custody.
Opposition figure Megawati Sukarnoputri was warmly welcomed by her supporters on Wednesday (November 27) when she arrived in the central Jakarta State Court to hear the judges pronounce their verdicts.
Security was tight outside the court, with steel-helmeted police in riot gear watching warily.
The chief judge read out the first list of verdicts, acquitting seven of the accused and sentencing 52 others to time already served in custody.
The accused erupted in anger and rushed toward the bench shouting "It was engineered" after the judge read out the verdict.
Megawati, the daughter of late founding president Sukarno listened to the verdict calmly. She did not comment.
The chief defence lawyer R.O. Tambunan said those convicted would appeal in the High Court.
The Megawati supporters were taken into custody after police raided the headquarters of the Indonesian Democratic Party (PDI) on July 27, where supporters of Megawati were holed up. They claimed the government was behind a factional split in the PDI which saw Megawati lose leadership of the party and reduced her power as an opponent to the government.
The raid led to riots in Jakarta in which at least five people died. It was the worst violence in the city for more than two decades.
The 124 people arrested, who were evicted from the PDI building after exchanging insults for more than an hour with members of the rival faction, were charged with assault and disobeying police orders.
Judges acquitted all of them on the assault charges but said all but nine were guilty of disobeying orders.
Some 10 members of a leftist student group and independent labour leader Muchtar Pakpahan remain in custody on charges of subversion, for which the maximum punishment is death. They have been accused of instigating the riots that followed the police raid.
Indonesia lets only three parties contest elections: Golkar, the PDI and the Moslem-oriented United Development Party. It has said Megawati does not represent the PDI and has allowed the rival faction to present a list of election candidates.
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