INDONESIA: Police officers torture a young woman to force her husband’s surrender


Urgent Appeal Case: AHRC-UAC-175-2009
ISSUES: Arbitrary arrest & detention, Torture, Violence against women, Women's rights,

Dear friends,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) continues to receive reports of police torture in Indonesia, the latest of which involves the illegal arrest and torture of a young woman by Jakarta Metropolitan police officers and sector police in Natar, South Lampung. The woman was allegedly tortured over two days with electric shocks to obtain information in a criminal investigation involving her husband. 


According to information that we have received from the family of the victim, the Lampung Legal Aid Institute and KontraS, the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence, on 24 July 2009 at around 3am, police officers from Natar and Jakarta illegally arrested Mrs. Muliyana, 24, at her home in Natar, and took her away in a police vehicle. During the trip to the Natar sector police station an officer of the Jakarta Metropolitan police (Kepolisian Daerah Metro Jakarta Raya/Polda Metrojaya), Mr. Eva Agustina, interrogated Mrs. Muliyana regarding a bank robbery at BNI in Jakarta that her husband may have been involved with. Mrs. Muliyana said that she did not know about the robbery. In response she was electrocuted by Agustina six times, using three different parts of her right arm, as seen in the photo above (closer shots can be viewed here: Photo 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6). Two more electroshocks were used on the victim while the car sat parked in front of the sector police station.

The interrogation continued at the station at around 3.30am, during which Mrs. Muliyana was beaten and pulled around by her hair, while being asked for information about the location of stolen money. By 4.10am no information had been obtained from the victim, and she was reportedly taken to her brother’s house in a police vehicle. During this trip a police officer Ade Ros allegedly hit the detainee in the face another three times and pulled at her hair. At 2pm the next day she was re-arrested and driven to Jakarta, a trip of a few hundred kilometers by car and ferry. 

After arriving at the Jakarta Metropolitan Police Station the victim was once more kept in the transport vehicle on station premises (next to the room of the criminal investigator or ditreskrimum) and electrocuted by Agustina. In the meantime her husband, Mr. Azwan Effendi had surrendered to the North Sumatera police after arriving in Medan and had been taken to the same station in Jakarta to be interrogated alongside his wife. 

We are told that at around 2.10pm on 25 July Mrs. Muliyana was taken to the second floor of Unit III of the Criminal and Violence department (kejahatan dan kekerasan/Jatanras) where Agustina electrocuted her again in front her husband. The shocks were applied to her stomach. As a result of the interrogation we are told that Effendi’s alleged partners in the bank robbery were arrested by the same officers.  

The two detainees continued to be interrogated about the missing money until 6pm, with electric shocks reportedly used every 15 minutes. No new information about the money was reportedly obtained. The police then kept Mrs. Muliyana in detention at the station for five more days until July 30 when, with no evidence to warrant further detention, she was released at 1pm.

Since Mrs. Muliyana’s release she has continued to receive intimidating telephone calls from persons claiming to be Jakarta Metropolitan police officers. A month ago three officers came to her house and demanded that she give a statement for the investigation report into the complaint that she made at the station. She refused out of fear. The harassment has led the victim to file a report with the internal disciplinary unit of the national police headquarters, with the help of NGOs.


The AHRC has documented a number of recent cases of police torture in Indonesia and it is evident that the practice continues to be routinely used. One major reason for this is the lack of its criminalisation, which means that although torture is banned in the constitution, the penal code does currently not list torture as a crime and no punishment is attached to the act. 

Our latest cases involve police torturing demonstrating students (AHRC-UAC-135-2009), who were then jailed; no action has been taken against the officers. In the same month, July, a man in Aceh emerged from police custody covered in stab wounds and died in hospital shortly afterwards; no charges are yet being faced by police (AHRC-UAC-105-2009). In April a man in Central Java died after a short spell in detention, and his wounds indicated severe torture and were not at all consistent with the autopsy (AHRC-UAC-111-2009).

As a state party to the UN International Covenant on Civil and Political Right (ICCPR), the country is obliged to respect and fulfill the standards laid out, such as article 2 (which deals with a victim’s right to remedy), article 9 paragraph 5 (regarding compensation for arbitrary arrest and detention), and article 7 (the right to freedom from torture). As a party to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Woman, the country is obliged to seriously investigate claims of abuse against women in custody, and to take adequate measures to protect women in custody. As a party to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), the Indonesian government is obliged to criminalise torture and to put enforcement mechanisms in place that will help put an end to it. These obligations continue to be soundly ignored. For more information on the use and legal status of torture in Indonesia, please refer to our anti-torture campaign website 

It should be added that earlier this year the chief of the Indonesian National Police enacted the new Regulation No. 8, which deals with the duties of police according to human rights principles and standards. It prohibits the use of torture under any circumstances. 

Please send your letters to the authorities listed below to call for an impartial investigation into the arbitrary arrest and torture of Mrs. Muliyana; for disciplinary and legal action to be taken against the officers proven guilty; and for adequate compensation to be arranged for her.

The AHRC has written to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Question of Torture and to the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences about this case.

To support this case, please click here: SEND APPEAL LETTER


Dear _______________,

INDONESIA: Police officers torture a young woman to force her husband’s surrender   

Name of victim: Mrs. Muliyana, 24 years old.
Name of alleged perpetrators: Officers of the Natar police sector and the Jakarta Metropolitan police. 
Date of incident: 24 July 2009 
Place of incident: Jakarta, and in the Natar sub-district of south Lampung regency, Lampung province.

I am writing to voice my deepest concern regarding the arbitrary arrest and torture of a young woman to obtain information relating to a possible crime committed by her husband. According to information I have received, officers from the police sector of Natar and the Jakarta Metropolitan Police arrested Mrs. Muliyana on 24 July 2009 around 3.30am and tortured her on route to the Natar police sector station. She was interrogated and electrocuted six times in three places on her right arm in the police vehicle by officer Eva Agustina of the Jakarta Metropolitan Police (Kepolisian Daerah Metro Jakarta Raya/Polda Metrojaya). I am told that she was electrocuted twice more while the car was parked outside the station, and then beaten and pulled around by her hair during her interrogation inside the station. She was later beaten again in a police vehicle by police officer, Mr. Ade Ros.

I am told that the abuse continued on the same day after she was taken a few hundred kilometers to the Jakarta police district station. She was electrocuted twice more in the police vehicle while it was parked beside the criminal investigation room (Ditreskrimum), and later over a period of four hours at 15 minutes intervals, in front of her husband, who had surrendered in response to her arrest and torture. I hear that she was then illegally detained for five days until July 30, 2009, when police released her at 1pm, with no evidence to justify her arrest. 

I’d like to remind you of Indonesia’s obligations to act strongly against torture, as a state party to various international covenants, including those against torture, protecting women from violence and on civil and political rights (ICCPR). I am horrified to hear of the continual cases of abuse and murder that takes place in custody in Indonesia, and of the protection – through a lack of action – given to police perpetrators.  

I call for a prompt investigation into this case, followed by disciplinary and legal action. The victim must also be granted compensation as laid out in Article 14 of the CAT, and Articles 2 (3) and 9 (5) of the ICCPR. Indonesia must be seen to be taking the issue of torture seriously. As an important first step it must be fully criminalised. 
I look forward to your action in this matter.

Yours sincerely,



1. Mr. Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono 
President of Republic of Indonesia 
Presidential Palace, 
Jl. Medan Merdeka Utara Jakarta Pusat 10010 
Tel: +62 21 384 5627, ext. 1003 
Fax: +62 21 231 4138, +62 21 345 2685, +62 21 345 7782

2. General Bambang Hendarso Danuri 
Chief of Indonesian National Police 
Jl. Trunojoyo No. 3 
Jakarta Selatan 
Tel: +62 21 721 8012 
Fax: +62 21 720 7277 

3. Irjen Pol Wahyono 
Chief of the Jakarta Metropolitan Police 
Kepolisian Daerah Khusus Ibu Kota Jakarta Raya 
Polda Metro Jaya 
Jalan Sudirman Kavling 55 
Jakarta Selatan 
Tel:  +62 21 5234262  
Fax: +62 21 5234051

4. Mr. Adnan Pandu Praja 
Chief of the national police commission (Kompolnas) 
Jl. Tirtayasa VII No. 20 Komplek PTIK Jakarta Selatan 
Tel. +62 21 739 2352 
Fax. +62 21 739 2317

5. Mr. Patrialis Akbar
Minister of Justice and Human Rights 
JI. H.R. Rosuna Said Kav. 6-7 
Kuningan, Jakarta Selatan 
Fax: +62 21 525 3095

6. Mr. Beny K Harman
Chairman of Commission one of The House of Representative 
(Komisi III DPR RI) 
Jl. Gatot Subroto No. 6 Jakarta 
Tel : +62 21 5715569
Fax: +62 21 5715566

7. Mr. Ifdhal Kasim 
Chief of Indonesian Commission on Human Rights (KOMNAS HAM) 
Jln. Latuharhary No. 4B, Menteng, 
Jakarta Pusat 10310 
Tel:  +62 21 3925230  ext. 225/221 
Fax: +62 21 3925227 

Thank you.

Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission ( 

Document Type : Urgent Appeal Case
Document ID : AHRC-UAC-175-2009
Countries : Indonesia,
Issues : Arbitrary arrest & detention, Torture, Violence against women, Women's rights,