Juliari’s Low Sentence: It’s Prosecutors to Blame, Not Netizens

Editorial Omong-Omong

1 min read

Former Indonesia minister for social affairs Juliari Batubara must have been sentenced to life for stealing funds allocated to the poor as Covid-19 destroyed them and their livelihood in a time when the whole nation is struggling to survive the pandemic. Instead, he gets only 12 years. The main culprit for this light sentence must be directed to the prosecutors, who only demand 11 years for his crime.

Of course, the judges also play their part. While it’s understandable that judge usually gives punishment not far from what the prosecutors demand, there are many cases that judges distance themselves from the prosecutors and give much heavier punishment to the defendant.

With the right reasons judges do have the right and power to dismiss prosecutor’s demand and go with their own conscience. But in Juliari case judges seems to deliberately look to support prosecutors’ demand by floating non-sensical arguments. An argument that Juliari and his family already suffered from public humiliation and harassment so that he deserved a lighter sentence is non-sense and outrageous at the least. It hurts people’s sense of justice and degrade the country’s legal system to a new low.

Valid arguments to give him as heaviest punishment as possible are nowhere to be found. Arguments, such as it’s an act of crime done by civil servants in a time when people and the nation he swears to serve are in a dire condition, should be enough to get him life sentence.
Also, the deliberate use of corruption survivor (penyintas korupsi) to describe the corruption defendant seemingly aim at misleading the public, as if the defendant is a victim of a kind of disease or natural disaster, just like those who survive after earthquake, having cancer or  living with HIV-Aids. As such, they deserve some sympathy from other human beings. The fact is they are the most heinous living creature who indiscriminately suck the blood out of people — mostly poor people out of greed and desire to luxurious life. This is an insult to all the real survivors, and the parallelism must be promptly discarded form the diction of the nation.
Editorial Omong-Omong

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