The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Jakarta | Mon, April 08 2013, 11:18 AM
Police provide education, jobs to clear the streets of thugs
In a bid to maintain security and order in the capital, the police held an operation targeting thugs in areas notorious for their activities.
“The police received increasing numbers of public reports on the act of violence committed by thugs such as robbery and extortion.
“We decided to launch a police operation called Cipta Kondisi [conditioning] held simultaneously at all five police precincts,” Jakarta Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Rikwanto told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.
The operation focused on North Jakarta’s Penjaringan, Cilincing and Tanjung Priok, Grogol in West Jakarta and Senayan, which lies on the border of Central and South Jakarta.
In a four-hour operation on Saturday in North Jakarta, the police arrested 80 people.
The North Jakarta Police operational division head Adj. Sr. Comr. Allan Satya Dharmawan said the thugs were from six districts and their criminal activities included robberies of delivery trucks along the route to and from Tanjung Priok Port. He explained that they usually demanded money from truck drivers.
“For the time being, Tanjung Priok and Koja are the areas most affected by these sorts of activities,” Allan said as quoted by beritajakarta.com, adding that the police did not find any indication that they belonged to a syndicate.
During the crackdown, the police also arrested the leader of Kapak Merah (Red Axe), the most feared of all gangs of this sort who robbed motorists during broad daylight in North Jakarta and East Jakarta.
“We arrested the leader, MN, 40, while he and members of his gang were trying to steal a car in Cilincing, North Jakarta. Unfortunately, the other four managed to flee on motorcycles,” North Jakarta Police chief Sr. Comr. Muhammad Iqbal told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.
The four lackeys fled with the victim’s money — amounting to Rp 1.5 million (US$154) — jewelry and a cell phone.
Kompas.com reported that the Central Jakarta Police arrested 36 men for extorting people in the Senayan parking area.
The crackdown was held following a complaint from a resident who said that she was forced to pay a higher-than-usual price for parking.
Satya said the police would continue to work with community organizations, informal leaders and religious leaders to curb incidents in the future.
“We will hold the operation every day to restore security and order. These criminals will be released after we reeducate them. They will be obliged to report their whereabouts to the police every Monday and Thursday. If they are arrested again for a similar crime, they will be prosecuted and jailed,” he said.
According to Iqbal, the police would also help to keep the ruffians off the streets by finding them a job.
“We do not stop at arresting and punishing them. We will continue to educate and provide them with job skills so that when they are back in the community, they can work [rather than] commit crime,” he said.
The police said they have trained 500 men in specific skills since November 2012. Those deemed skilled were then employed by companies such as Astra and Jakarta International Container Terminal.