Three debt collectors implicated in the death of Citibank customer Irzen Octa were sentenced to five years in prison by the Jakarta High Court, annulling a previous sentence of one year each, a court spokesman said on Monday
Private debt collectors Arif Lukman, Donald Haris and Henry Waslinton were previously sentenced to one year in prison for “unpleasant conduct” in connection with the death of Irzen at Citibank’s Jakarta office. Presiding Judge M. Yusran Thawab, of the high court, overturned that ruling on May 14, sentencing the men to five years each for depriving Irzen’s liberty, which ultimately resulted in his death.
“The defendants were proven to have deprived the liberty on purpose and against the law that resulted in someone’s death,” said Achmad Sobari, spokesman for the Jakarta High Court.
The debt collectors faced a maximum sentence of 12 years in prison under Indonesia’s criminal code.
Irzen was picked up by the private debt collectors over Rp 100 million ($10,900) in outstanding credit card debt. The three men confiscated Irzen’s identification cards during the March 2011 meeting at Citibank’s Jakarta office, forcing the former politician to remain in the building.
He died of a ruptured blood vessel during the interrogation.
Irzen’s family — and an independent autopsy performed by the country’s leading coroner — said that he was assaulted before his death. The court rejected those claims, relying on the results of a prior autopsy that determined the ruptured blood vessel was caused by chronic hypertension, not physical assault.
The debt collectors’ lawyer Wirawan Adnan told Detik.com that he had not read the ruling.
“I haven’t read the verdict,” he told the Indonesian news portal. “But I think the verdict must have been influenced by the news media.”