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Cablegate: South Sulawesi: Makassar Drug Bust Uncovers Explosives,

VZCZCXRO3673
RR RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJS #0035 0731005
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 131005Z MAR 08
FM AMCONSUL SURABAYA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0179
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0093
RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA 0166
RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 0184
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 0037
RHHMUNA/USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 0091

UNCLAS SURABAYA 000035

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP, EAP/MTS, INR/EAP, INL, S/CT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ASEC PGOV PREL ID
SUBJECT: SOUTH SULAWESI: MAKASSAR DRUG BUST UNCOVERS EXPLOSIVES,
WEAPON AND AMMUNITION

This message is sensitive but unclassified. Please protect
accordingly.

1. (SBU) Makassar authorities are still investigating the
discovery of explosives, an AR-15 rifle and many rounds of
ammunition at a house belonging to a Mr. Sabri at a housing
complex in a Makassar suburb according to media reports and
Congen Surabaya contacts. Makassar police -- acting on a tip
from a narcotics informant -- thought they would seize
narcotics, but discovered TNT, a rifle and live ammunition
instead. The purpose of the cache and Sabri's intentions remain
unclear. Sabri has told authorities that the ammunition is
related to his late father's membership in a gun club. Congen
Surabaya sources have speculated that the TNT could have been
obtained from one of the many mining sites in Indonesia.

2. (SBU) Fajar Daily Chief Editor, Sukriansyah, who has spoken
directly with authorities investigating the case, told Congen
Surabaya that South Sulawesi Police are still questioning Sabri
about the origin of the explosives and AR-15 rifle. What police
thought would be a routine drug seizure turned into a much more
dangerous proposition, said Sukriansyah. During questioning
following his arrest for marijuana possession on Tuesday March
11, a man named Zulkarnain told police he obtained the drugs
from Sabri. Police set out to raid what they thought was a
cache of drugs in Sabri's home the same day. Instead of drugs,
the March 11 raid uncovered what press reports described as:
"one Air Shooter rifle AR 15 A2, nine TNT < high explosives, 35
SME cartridges, 44, 5.56 mm, cartridges [Note: used for the
AR-15 rifle, End note] an empty case for a mortar shell, 11
empty cartridge casings, four live 7.62 mm cartridges and one
rubber bullet, all intended for an AK-47 type rifle."

3. (SBU) Chief of South Sulawesi Police, Inspector General
Sisno Adiwinoto told local media that the police and Detachment
88 are investigating the case. South Sulawesi Police are not
publicly speculating on any links between Sabri and terrorist
groups and have released information that would suggest other
sources for the cache. Police have disclosed that Sabri said
all explosives, the weapon and ammunition belonged to his late
father Saleh Ibrahim, and were simply uncovered when the house
was renovated in 2007. Sabri told authorities that his late
father was a member of "Perbakin" or (Persatuan Menembak
Indonesia) the Indonesian Shooting Association. Congen Surabaya
asked a Makassar contact familiar with the case why a member of
a shooting club would possess TNT. The contact speculated that
many members of Perbakin are Indonesian military members and
police officers with access to weapons unavailable to the
general public. This might be the case with these weapons and
Sabri's father might have obtained them through these channels.

MCCLELLAND

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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