Prosecutors Seeking Eight Years for Bekasi Bicycle Bomber

The Jakarta Globe

Prosecutors on Tuesday demanded that accused suicide bomber Ahmad Abdul Rabani serve eight years in jail for attempting to detonate an explosive at a police post in Bekasi in September.

Arguing in East Jakarta District Court, prosecutors said the 38-year-old Ahmad had acted with intent to kill two officers of the law when he attempted to detonate a crude homemade bomb mounted on the backseat of his bicycle at a traffic police post in Kalimalang, Bekasi.

The bomb exploded prematurely, injuring only Ahmad and leaving him with serious wounds, including a broken leg and arm.

Prosecutors had earlier said they would possibly seek the death penalty under the nation’s Anti-Terrorism Law, but on Tuesday asked for a lighter sentence for the alleged lone-wolf suicide bomber.

“We recommend that the defendant is jailed for a maximum of eight years, minus the time spent in prison. The mitigating factors are, that he was well-behaved throughout the course of the trial, and admitted to making the bomb,” prosecutor Trimo said.

“He put people’s lives in danger. He aimed to spread terror,” he added.

Accompanied by lawyers from the White Legal Aid Foundation (LBH Putih), Ahmad told reporters afterward that he was resigned to his fate and would accept whatever punishment he was given.

“I do not regret what I did. I will accept all consequences that come my way,” he said. “The most important thing is that I did all in my efforts to defend Islam.”

Ahmad is also receiving legal assistance from the Muslim Defenders Team (TPM), which also represents extremist preacher Abu Bakar Bashir.

Prosecutors have said that Ahmad suffers mental health problems after losing his entire family in the 2004 tsunami in Aceh, and that he held a grudge against the police after reading a number of news reports about police officers arresting Muslim terror suspects, and yearned to become a syuhada , or martyr.

His trial is scheduled to resume on Tuesday. Elisabeth Oktofani

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