Bali bomb-maker Umar Patek jailed for 20 years

 
Umar Patek, centre, accompanied by his lawyer Ashludin Hatjani, right, speaks at West Jakarta District Court in Jakarta, Indonesia, 7 May, 2012 Umar Patek says he played a more minor role than prosecutors have alleged

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An Indonesian court has convicted a militant of making explosives used in the deadly 2002 Bali bombings and sentenced him to 20 years in jail.

Umar Patek was found guilty of murder and bomb-making in connection with the Bali attacks, which killed more than 200 people, mostly foreigners.

He admitted helping mix chemicals, but said he was not involved beyond that.

Prosecutors did not ask for the death penalty after Patek apologised to victims and their families.

Patek was found guilty of all six charges, some terrorism-related, that he was facing.

Analysis

The judges delivered their verdict in a keenly watched trial. After the verdict was announced, Mr Patek appeared calm and composed, shaking the hands of the judges.

He could have faced the death penalty - the maximum punishment for some of the charges against him in Indonesia is death by firing squad.

But prosecutors said Mr Patek had shown remorse during the trial, consistently apologising for his role in the attacks, and even going as far as to say he was against the Bali bombings from the start. That is why they only asked for a term of life in prison. In the end, he received less than that - 20 years in jail.

It is still not clear whether his lawyers will lodge an appeal - but this verdict has given Indonesia the opportunity to close the chapter on the deadly Bali blasts, which changed the image of this country as a safe place.

This included charges relating to attacks on churches in Jakarta, which killed 19 people on Christmas Eve 2000.

He is the last key player to be tried in Indonesia in relation to the Bali attacks.

The BBC's Karishma Vaswani, in Jakarta, says that for many in the country, and around the world, this is an opportunity to close the chapter on the tragic events of 2002.

'Bombers' executed

The Bali attacks targeted Paddy's Bar and the Sari Club in the resort of Kuta. Those killed were from 21 countries, including 88 Australians, 38 Indonesians and 28 Britons.

The bombings were blamed on the Jemaah Islamiah militant network.

Three men were executed in 2008 for playing key roles in the attacks and two others have been killed in raids.

Patek, whose trial began in February, was arrested in January 2011 in Abbottabad, the Pakistani town where Osama Bin Laden was later killed in a US raid.

He was extradited to Indonesia in August 2011.

Bali bombings 12 Oct 2002

Police inspect devastation in Kuta, Bali on 13 October 2002 after the attacks
  • Paddy's Bar and Sari Club in the resort of Kuta targeted, 202 killed from 21 countries
  • Militant group Jemaah Islamiah blamed for the bombings
  • Imam Samudra, Amrozi Nurhasyim and Ali Ghufron (Mukhlas) executed in Nov 2008 for planning the attacks
  • Alleged attack planner Dulmatin (2010) and bomb-maker Azahari Husin (2005) killed
  • Another suspect Hambali (Riduan Isamuddin) is being held in Guantanamo Bay

Police were deployed to guard the court, which opened its session at 09:20 (02:20 GMT). Snipers were positioned in and around the court buildings for the final session.

Judges read the charges and a long summary of witness testimony before delivering their verdict.

Lawyers for Umar Patek sought to play down his role in the Bali blasts, saying he was involved in the preparation of the bombs but not in carrying out the attacks.

Patek himself has admitted helping to assemble the explosives, but said he was not the chief bomb-maker, as prosecutors alleged.

Patek, who is reportedly known as "demolition man," asked for ''forgiveness'' in court, saying he was against the attacks "from the start".

After the judgement, one of the lawyers in Patek's defence team, Ashluddin Hatjani, said his client was "not angry" but "sad" at the verdict.

"He was disappointed. It was too heavy compared to the sentences for other terrorists with bigger roles," he said.

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 132.

    20 years? Seems very light for being part of such a violation of humanity. But of course, I did not sit through Patek's trial so don't know the fine detail of his degree of involvement & motivations.

    Most terrorist groups are set-up by the angry, supported by individuals (or Govts) with something to gain & 'staffed' by the intellectually inadequate, the gullible & those with nothing to lose.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 131.

    To kill an innocent is a sin as per Islam. The Koran says to kill even an individual innocent carries the retribution of killing the whole of humanity. Twenty years incarceration is just an iota in the infinite divinity.

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 130.

    The world continues to chuckle at or weep for the inscrutable Alice-in-Wonderland third-world land in question.

    Twenty years?

    Classic. That was precisely the sentence given to Schapelle Corby on the strength of purely circumstantial evidence that she had tried to import some weed of the kind that's in various degrees legal in some more civilised nations.

    Tobacco and Indonesia is another story.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 129.

    119.coram-populo-2010
    21st June 2012 - 23:11
    @117 'alexicon'
    ~~
    Islamic terrorists, do and have planned rationally, in great detail to cause civilian attrocities.

    No - they plan but not, rationally, to achieve their goal. They choose instead dramatic effect to promote themselves. I won't suggest what they might do but thankfully thier perverse ideology prevents them being more effective.

  • Comment number 128.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 127.

    Twenty years is a joke - that's about a month per life taken. I don't condone it but the Indonesian government can give you a death sentence for drug trafficking but only 20 years for mass murder? It is completely unbelievable!! I knew Indonesia was corrupt but this takes the biscuit!

  • Comment number 126.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 125.

    How one country chooses to punish their criminals is their business, the point is he was found guilty and is going to prison. To those who feel that they would rather see a life term, or even death, I advise watching Aung San Suu Kyi's speech to parliament yesterday. That lady has something that those who just want blood will never have.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 124.

    I do not support the death penalty under any circumstance - but it is incongruous that persons convicted of importing drugs into Indonesia often receive the death sentence and some have been executed, yet convicted terrorists who have been involved in the deaths of hundreds of persons receive twenty year sentences or less. I can't help but think that Indonesia has a double standard...

  • Comment number 123.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 122.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 121.

    All crimes must be investigated and all criminals must be punished as per Law. But state terrorists, human rights abusers and war criminals escape from accountability and punishment. The Australian government entertained Sri Lankan alleged war criminal Rajapakse regime during the Commonwealth summit in Australia. Where is the Law? Where is the Justice? Crazy world!

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 120.

    60.John
    put yourself in the shoes of someone who lost a loved one due to the fact that their are people who think killing people is permitted in the name of dark age religion stupidity.

    No - for justice, we should not take the attitude of someone who suffered loss; they are rightly not thinking clearly about wider issues. We need to take a balanced view of crime and how it is dealt with.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 119.

    @117 'alexicon'
    ~~
    Islamic terrorists, do and have planned rationally, in great detail to cause civilian attrocities.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 118.

    Shapelle Corby got 20 years for bringing a bunch of dope into Indonesia. This guy is responsible for killing more than 154 people and he gets the same - 20 years. It's obscene. One can see clearly from this where the Indonesian govt's priorities lie.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 117.

    109.Gironaut

    I can't understand Terrorists. Two hundred people murdered in a disco isn't going to change the World for the better.

    Terrorists do not seek to change the world for the better. Fortunately many are driven by an ideology that dictates their actions and stops them acheiving their goals. If Islamic terrorists ever start to plan rationally we will be in big trouble.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 116.

    @133 'The Rockabilly Red'
    ~~
    That's fine for a country who wishes to be ruled by Islam. Unfortunately, Islamic countries are driving out extreme versions of Islam who flee to other places to create mayhem under the protection of European Human Rights Laws and continue to take the * out of those who don't want Islamic or Sharia Law either.

    Do grow up. We are all fed up with fundamentalists.

  • Comment number 115.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 114.

    @ 111 'alexicon'
    ~~
    Glad you appreciated my post @ 106 and felt able to quote a selective part of it - not unlike how ancient stories started and rolled with it.

    I wish you well, but a tiny part of me believes in a spiritual and higher being - even though I have no time for any religion.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 113.

    Re 106: Your main point has no meaning in the context of discussion including islam. To a muslim, politics, religion, and identity, are all aspects of the same thing. A muslim's politics are defined by his faith. These in turn define his identity. A failure to understand this is a huge roadblock in dealing with, and halting 'islamic terrorism'.

 

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