Wednesday, 12 September, 2012 | 20:34 WIB
Arrested After Two Years On the Run
TEMPO Interactive, Blitar:Blitar Attorney Generalís Office (AGO) finally caught Imam Basuki, graft suspect in the Socio-Economic Management Society Program (P2SEM) funds of Rp. 2.5 billion. He fled as investigators were about to arrest him in July 2010.
Chief of Intelligence Section, Blitar AGO, Ansori, says Imam was arrested at his home in Sukorejo, Blitar on the night of September 7. The arrest was made when officers passed by him on a highway and immediately followed him. "We met by coincidence," said Ansori to Tempo on September 11.
Not wanting their prey to escape a second time, the AGO threw him in Blitar prison that very night. He is currently being investigated, before his dossiers are turned over to the Antigraft Court in Surabaya. Ansori said hunting down the fugitive was quite tiring. The investigating team even announced Imamís description in the media. While on the run, Imam was known to always be on the move, even to outside Java.
Imam also acted as a broker for the P2SEM project funded by the Community Empowerment Board of East Java Province. He was named a suspect in January 2010 after he was discovered to have misappropriated the budget intended for the empowerment of 25 farmer groups in the Ponggok District, Blitar regency.
The program that was implemented in 2008 was managed by Imam Basuki and his three colleagues who have been named suspects.
From their investigations, AGO discovered that although Imam reported that each farmer group received Rp300 million to Rp350 million, in reality, it was only 50 percent of the amount.
Rumor has it that some of the funds were used to finance the operations of a political party, but this is yet to be supported by evidence. "Weíre still studying (the money to the party)," said Ansori.
Blitar AGO was at one point accused of deliberately letting Imam escape. Allegations by the People's Anti-Corruption Committee (KRPK) chair Triyanto suggested a number of irregularities. One was leaking information about the plan to detain him, allowing ihm to escape. "In the end, the case was stopped," he said.
Now that Imam has been arrested, Triyanto hopes AGO will actually solve the case, including tracking the flow of funds to political parties.
HARI TRI WASONO