Winasa Now Faces Threat of Arrest

DENPASAR

Police investigating Jembrana Regent Gede Winasa over corruption allegations have sent a letter to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono seeking permission to detain him, a requirement under the leadership code.

Winasa is now also under investigation over a separate allegation of money laundering.

Bali Police anti-corruption chief Komang Suwirya, who announced that the letter had gone to the president, said investigators had already asked Winasa 79 questions relating to a composting plant contract that is alleged never to have gone to tender and to have been fast-tracked on Winasa’s direct orders.

The composting contract was also the subject of a district court trial in Jembrana at which Winasa was called as a witness. He did not appear.

He also ignored two summonses by police to attend for interview in Denpasar over the case. When he got the second summons he told them he couldn’t attend at the time required because he had a speaking engagement at a university.

Suwirya said police were still deciding whether to detain Winasa and would wait until November 15, when his term as regent ends.

“We won’t necessarily detain him on November 15 either,” he said. “We are still completing the investigation.”

Asked by the media this week when the investigation would be finalised, he said: “As soon as possible.”

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