False Sentencing For Hengky ‘Was Intentional’: Police
The police have stepped up their investigation into a verdict falsification case involving now discharged Supreme Court judge Ahmad Yamani on Friday, with one officer claiming the judge consciously altered the sentence of a drug verdict.
Ahmad first came to nationwide attention after he led a three-member panel that commuted the death penalty for convicted drug lord Hengky Gunawan into a 15-year jail term.
But anger toward the judge resurfaced after a copy of the verdict, which was different from the actual ruling announced to the public, started circulating in late 2012.
The other version of the ruling suggests that Hengky’s term was slashed further to 12 years.
“This is not a case of negligence but it was intentional, according to me,” said Comr. Gen. Sutarman, the National Police chief of detectives, refuting Ahmad’s claim that changing the sentence was an accidental mistake.
However, Sutarman said that police did not yet have evidence to back up its conviction. He also said that there was no defendant in the case yet.
An Honor Council of the Supreme Court has since dishonorably discharged Ahmad after he was found guilty of falsifying the case review verdict.
He has become the first Supreme Court judge to be dishonorably discharged.
Asked on the possible motive for altering the date on the verdict, Sutarman said: “What is clear is that when something gets altered, there must be an aim and an interest behind that. … It is certainly for the interest of an individual.”
Ahmad, however, has argued that the altered date on the verdict was a mere typo — a case of negligence — but the honor council said he was guilty of having violated the judges’ code of ethics, leading to his dismissal.
Hengky was arrested in 2007 for running a major ecstasy production and distribution operation.
The Surabaya District Court initially handed down a 15-year prison sentence but on appeal, the Supreme Court gave Hengky the death penalty.
His last-gasp appeal led to the death penalty being revoked in April 2012, with the court citing humanitarian reasons.