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Cablegate: Opening of Timika Trial Deferred Until July 11

VZCZCXRO8928
OO RUEHCHI RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHJA #8383 1860816
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 050816Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6750
INFO RUEHZS/ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS
RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 9691
RUEHPB/AMEMBASSY PORT MORESBY 3178
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 9885
RUEHWL/AMEMBASSY WELLINGTON 0932
RHHMUNA/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUEAWJB/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RUCNFB/DIR FBI WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS JAKARTA 008383

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

FBI PLS PASS CTD/GAO - UC ED MONTOOTH
SECSTATE FOR EAP/MTS, DS/DSS, DS/IP/EAP, DS/EAP/ITA, AND
CA/OCS/ACS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM ASEC KJUS CASC ID
SUBJECT: OPENING OF TIMIKA TRIAL DEFERRED UNTIL JULY 11

REF: JAKARTA 8114 (TRIAL OF TIMIKA SUSPECTS)

1. (SBU) The trial of Anthonious Wamang, Agustinus Anggaibak
and five other co-conspirators in the 2002 murders of two
Amcits in Timika, Papua did not begin in Central Jakarta
District Court on July 4 as originally planned (reftel). The
suspects accepted the advice of their legal counsel, a team
of lawyers from the Indonesian Legal Aid and Human Rights
Association (PBHI), to decline to appear. PBHI insists that
the trial should be held in Timika. After a morning of
waiting around the courtroom, the prosecution team prepared a
letter advising Judge Nurdin of the situation. The judge
then deferred the opening of the trial until Tuesday, July
11. If the defendants persist in refusing to appear at that
time, the judge, in keeping with established legal practice
in such situations, is expected to issue a summons for the
suspects to be compelled to appear at a later date.

2. (SBU) The presence of journalists and a group of about 20
Papuan demonstrators at the courthouse on July 4 indicates
that when the trial eventually does open, there will be
significant media interest.

3. (SBU) Comment. We do not believe that PBHI will succeed
in reversing the Supreme Court's decision to change the venue
of the trial from Papua to Jakarta based on security grounds.
In Indonesia, there is both ample recent precedent and legal
basis for such a decision. This is in effect a stalling
tactic and a preview of PBHI's likely defense strategy of
arguing that the prosecution is being driven by political
considerations on the part of the central government. End
comment.
PASCOE

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