Two Malaysian nationals were charged with obstructing justice for allegedly helping graft suspect Neneng Sri Wahyuni avoid prosecution while she was in Malaysia, the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) said on Thursday.
Razmi Bin Muhammad Yusof and Hasan Bin Kushi were arrested at Central Jakarta’s Oasis Amir Hotel on Wednesday, mere hours after KPK officials nabbed Neneng at her South Jakarta home. Investigators alleged that the two men traveled from Kuala Lumpur to Jakarta with Neneng and played “important roles” helping Neneng while she was on the run.
“The KPK leadership board decided to name the two persons as suspects based on the evidence that we have,” KPK chairman Abraham Samad said, “The two Malaysian citizens are charged under Article 21 [of the Anti-corruption Law] that doesn’t relate to bribery crime, but it’s about obstruction of justice.”
One of the men has strong political connections to a Malaysian kingdom, KPK spokesman Johan Budi said shortly after the arrests, declining to elaborate.
But Malaysia’s Ambassador to Indonesia Dato Syed Munshe Afdzaruddin Bin Syed Hassan denied on Thursday claims that Razmi and Hasan were state officials.
“It’s a rumor that they are the advisors of the kingdom. They don’t belong to any [state agency]. They aren’t officials of the kingdom,” Afdzaruddin said in a press conference at the KPK building.
The ambassador told reporters that Malaysia had checked out pair’s story.
“I got their ID cards from the KPK and I already clarified them in Malaysia, where they live, what their addresses are,” Afdzaruddin said without elaborating.
He said his embassy would leave Razmi and Hasan to face legal proceedings in Indonesia.
“We aren’t interfering with the law here, just let it proceed properly. But please no overlapping [reports]. If there is a violation of the law, then let it be taken action against,” Afdzaruddin said.
Neneng was named a suspect for her alleged roles in a graft-ridden solar energy procurement project of the Manpower and Transmigration Ministry in August of 2011. She was acting as the finance director of Anugerah Nusantara, the company that won the project.
But she had already fled the country in May 2011 with her husband and graft convict Muhammad Nazaruddin, the owner of Anugerah Nusantara’s holding company.
Nazaruddin, a former Democratic Party treasurer, was also on the run for months before he was arrested in Cartagena, Colombia, in August of 2011. He was sentenced to four years and 10 months in prison in April for his roles in a corruption case surrounding the construction of an athletes’ village in Palembang for the 2011 Southeast Asian Games.