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Killers of Binus student sentenced to life imprisonment

Publication Date : 25-04-2012


Yusni Chandra burst into tears yesterday as judges at the West Jakarta District Court handed out life sentences to the four men who raped and murdered her only child on a public minivan.

Yusni said that the men deserved to die for raping and murdering her daughter, Livia Pavita Soelistiyo, 21, as she returned home from class at Bina Nusantara University (Binus) in Kemanggisan, West Jakarta, on Aug. 16.

“The government has failed Livia. The sentence was too lenient. There could be other Livias.”

Livia was murdered after she boarded a M24 public minivan plying the Srengseng–Kebon Jeruk route, heading home to Jelambar, West Jakarta.

Irwan Soleh, 22; Rohman Setiawan, 20; and Apriyadi, 22; who were already on board the minivan; robbed and then strangled Livia to death with ropes they found on the minivan.

Muhammad Fahri, 19, drove the vehicle and played loud music to cover Livia’s screams. The men took 200,000 rupiah (US$22) and a cellular phone from Livia before dumping the woman’s body in a drain in Cisauk, Tangerang.

Presiding judge Longser Sormin said that the suspects had been found guilty of violating Articles 338 and 340 of the Criminal Code on premeditated murder and Article 365 on armed robbery.

“When borrowing the minivan from its owner, the defendants were prepared to rob any woman passenger stepping into the minivan,” he said.

Longser also said that suspects, whose trial began in December, had deliberately targeted a Chinese-Indonesian woman.

The defendants previously testified that they planned to kill their victim if she fought back.

“Their testimony has shown that they did not kill the victim on a whim,” Longser said, granting lead prosecutor Didik Haryanto’s demand for life sentences.

The defendants’ lawyer, Restu Sri Utomo, told the court in his summation that the murder was not premeditated, as his clients did not bring “special tools” to kill Livia, and that they had panicked when she screamed.

Longser dismissed such considerations. “The life sentences were given in consideration of the fact that the incident has created serious anxiety among women using public minivans.”

Restu said that his clients had admitted their guilt and were ready to go to prison.

“It is good that all my clients are single. They don’t have families who will be left unfed when they go to prison,” he said.

Meanwhile, at a separate trial involving a rape on a public minivan, verdicts were issued on March 20 sentencing the guilty from six to 11 years’ imprisonment.

The Depok District Court sentenced M. Saat Dalimunte, 19, to 10 years’ imprisonment for robbing and raping RS, a vegetable vendor on a minivan on her way to a traditional market in Depok at 3 a.m. on Dec. 14.

Verdicts are still pending for two other defendants in the case.

Road to justice

• Aug. 16, 2011

Livia goes missing after leaving her campus in Kemanggisan, West Jakarta.

• Aug. 21, 2011

Livia’s remains are discovered by a resident in a drain in Cisauk, Tangerang. The family identifies the remains as Livia by her necklace.

• Aug. 25, 2011

The Jakarta Police arrest four suspects.

• Dec. 21, 2011

The four stand trial at the West Jakarta District Court.

• March 21, 2012

Prosecutor Didik Haryanto demands life sentences for the four defendants. He accuses the four of violating Articles 338 and 340 of the Criminal Code on premeditated murder and Article 365 on armed robbery.

• April 4, 2012

Defense lawyer Restu Sri Utomo claims that his clients did not bring any “special tools” to kill Livia, and thus should not be charged with premeditated murder.

• April 10, 2012

Prosecutors maintain the crime was premeditated and the four accused should not receive light sentences.

• April 24, 2012

Judges at the West Jakarta District Court hand down life sentences to the four men telling them that they are guilty of premeditated murder.


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