- Title: INDONESIA: Anti-graft chief charged with murdering love rival
- Date: 9th October 2009
- Summary: JAKARTA, INDONESIA (OCTOBER 8, 2009) (REUTERS) POLICEMEN AND CROWD OUTSIDE COURTHOUSE IN SOUTH JAKARTA POLICEMEN INDONESIAN ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION CHIEF ANTASARI AZHAR IN COURTROOM AZHAR AZHAR IN COURTROOM COURTROOM AUDIENCE AND AZHAR AZHAR'S TEAM OF LAWYERS COURT JUDGE PROSECUTION TEAM AZHAR COURT AUDIENCE AZHAR AND COURT JUDGE JUDGE DECLARING ADJOURNMENT FOR MURDER TRIAL MEDIA FOLLOWING AZHAR OUT OF COURTROOM (SOUNDBITE) (Bahasa Indonesia) MOHAMMAD ASSEGAF, AZHAR'S LAWYER, SAYING: "We have just heard the prosecution's case charge today. We are prepared for the trial when it resumes." POLICEMEN
- Embargoed: 24th October 2009 13:00
- Location: Indonesia
- Country: Indonesia
- Reuters ID: LVA8S5RB8LMI7OJ8LSRQZAOFIBGS
- Story Text: Indonesian prosecutors on Thursday (October 8) charged the country's suspended national anti-graft agency chief with masterminding the murder of a rival in a love triangle, in a case that has put mud on the face of an institution that had gained a "cult" status for its success.
The prosecutors indicted Antasari Azhar, 56, along with several others, for a plot to hire hitmen to kill businessman Nasrudin Zulkarnaen, a director of a state-owned pharmaceutical firm.
A media businessman and a high-ranking police official have also been charged.
Azhar, who was a public prosecutor before being tapped by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to head the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) in late 2007, was detained on May 4, months after Zulkarnaen was shot dead in March outside a golf course.
Security was tight around the south Jakarta courthouse where Azhari was formally charged with the crime.
A huge crowd also turned up to watch the proceedings which the court judge later adjourned to October 15.
"We have just heard the prosecution's case charge today. We are prepared for the trial when it resumes," said Mohammad Assegaf, who is part of Azhar's defence team.
Media speculation has connected the killing to an alleged love triangle involving the two men and a 22-year-old female golf caddy.
Allegations that Azhar was the mastermind of the killing have thrown into turmoil the work of the KPK, which has claimed a series of high-profile scalps and is considered one of Indonesia's few clean institutions.
Police had said nine suspects had been named in connection with the murder of Zulkarnaen, the head of state firm Putra Rajawali Banjaran, who was slain in his car in a coordinated assault by attackers on motorcycles.
The case triggered a storm of speculation in Indonesia, with the Attorney General's Office (AGO) forced to deny it was seeking revenge against Azhar for the high-profile corruption convictions of senior AGO prosecutors.
Yudhoyono's administration this week named three men to head the KPK after Azhar's two deputies were charged with abuse of power and bribery.
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