Tuesday, January 12, 2010

5-Star Inmates, remembering Al Capone

A snap inspection by President SBY's new task force on the eradication of the judicial mafia recently discovered that rich inmates, such as bribery convict Artalita Suryani, are receiving 5-star treatment in jail. That's not new. One of the rich inmates, an illegal logging convict, was on business class flight and sit next to forestry minister about two years ago.
Artalyta Suryani, popular as Ayin, occupies a cell which is connected to a 64 square-meter room equipped with refrigerator, TV, computer, a living room where she could get facial etc. Ayin was getting medical treatment from specialist doctor, Hadi Sugianto, reportedly expert in cosmetic laser, from Tribatra Clinic.
Criticized for such special privileges, officers at the justice and human rights ministry defended saying "so she could control her companies with 80,000 workers." Artalyta is known as "broker" for fugitive businessman Sjamsul Nursalim.
Sjamsul, a suspect, got a VVIP treatment when he was granted an overseas medical treatment, in Japan. He left the country, and now lives happily in Singapore and Shanghai, China. Hundreds of other crime suspects got the same VVIP treatment from Indonesian judicial system. The "Don", Soeharto, got the VVIP treatment till his death.
The snap inspection succeeded from PR perspective. But people have known these treatments, including how judicial system serves the haves and powerful and works against ordinary people.
"You can't claim a success just because of discovering something like that. We know all of these special treatments have been given since many decades," Gde Suardana, lecturer in Udayana University commented.
"What I'm afraid, this would only diverting public's attention from Century scandal. The most important thing, what will they do about it," Tempo source commented.
Right, the most important is what next?
SBY and those with judicial power have to learn how Al Capone was treated. Capone spent 10 months in Eastern State Penitentiary on weapons charges from 1929-1930 where he managed to pay off guards and other prison officials and got privileged cell.
In May 1932, Capone was sent to a tough federal prison in Atlanta, but was able to take control and get special privileges. He was then transferred to Alcatraz, where tight security and an uncompromising warden ensured that Capone had no contact with the outside world. (Well, for sure no Blackberry or Wi-Fi Internet facility like Artalyta)
When Capone attempted to bribe guards to obtain special treatment, he was sent to solitary confinement. He was released on November 16, 1939.
So, on the special facilities provided to the rich inmates, investigation shall be done thoroughly on prison officials and their bosses. Without bribery, it's impossible to get such 5-star facility, right?
Well, the biggest test for SBY is whether he would do something on special treatment given to Aulia Pohan, former deputy governor of Bank Indonesia and the father in law of his eldest son, who is detained in Kelapa Dua penitentiary in Depok, West Java.
by Haryanto Suharman & Yosef Ardi



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