North Sumatra Police Officer Arrested in Drug Case

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    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The police investigators in Tanah Karo District, North Sumatra Province, have arrested the police chief of Payung Subdistrict, First Inspector Samson Susaei Sembiring, for allegedly involving in drug trafficking activities.  

    The suspect was apprehended following the arrests of three drug users in Payung Subdistrict Payung named Dedi Ketaren, Gemuruh Bangun, and Jonatan Tarigan, Tanah Karo Police Chief Adjunct Commissioner Ras Maju Tarigan said here Friday.

    One of the drug users told the police investigators that they got the drug from a local police officer.

    In response to this confession, the Tanah Karo District Police then decided to hand over this drug case to the investigators at the North Sumatra Police Headquarters, he said.

    The decision was made to maintain the local police's integrity and to get rid of speculation in the public, he said without explaining the type of illicit drug that First Inspector Samson Susaei Sembiring had traded.

    Indonesia repeatedly experiences the involvement of bad cops in drug trafficking activities.

    In April 2019, the Mataram district court in West Nusa Tenggara province sentenced a police officer to 10 years of imprisonment and imposed on him a fine of Rp1 billion or another three months in jail for being part of a major drug trafficking operation in Mataram city.

    The police officer, a Chief Brigadier, identified by his initials KB, was found guilty of violating article 111, paragraph 2 of Narcotics Law No. 35/2009, according to a verdict issued by the panel of judges.

    KB's role in the drug case came to light after he was found in possession of 7.7 kilograms of hashish.

    Indonesia is still targeted by both local and transnational drug rings as several individuals from its working-age population have been embroiled in a vicious circle.

    Some 50 drug use-related deaths occur in Indonesia. However, their deaths have failed to deter other drug users in the country from consuming these banned substances, according to the National Narcotics Agency's (BNN's) report.

    Users of crystal methamphetamine, narcotics, marijuana, and other addictive drugs transcend communities and socio-economic and cultural backgrounds.

    Hence, Indonesia is perceived by both domestic and transnational drug dealers as a potential market due to its huge population and millions of drug users. The drug trade in the country is estimated to reach nearly Rp66 trillion.

    Due to the ongoing serious threats posed by these drug lords, on December 5, 2019, BNN Chief Commissioner General Heru Winarko discussed issues with top security minister Mahfud MD on Indonesia's war on drugs, including the need to execute death row convicts.

    "Capital punishment is part of the laws that should be implemented," he told journalists following his meeting with the coordinating minister for political, legal, and security affairs.

    Several death row prisoners have yet to be executed for drug-related offences. Apart from this issue, he also deliberated on several other matters, including drugs in prison.

    ANTARA