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Indonesian Bomber Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison - 2004-08-24

An Indonesian court has sentenced a Muslim militant to 10 years in prison for his involvement in the bombing of a Jakarta luxury hotel last year. The man, known as Idris, was also accused in the 2002 Bali bombing, which killed more than 200 people, but he was cleared on a technicality.

Mohammed Ihsan, alias Jhoni Hendrawan but best known by his militant cover name Idris, was sentenced to jail on Tuesday in a Jakarta courtroom.

The judge gave him to 10 years in prison for assisting and participating in a terrorist plot to bomb the J.W. Marriott hotel in Jakarta last August. But as Idris was already in police custody at the time of the bombing, he was acquitted on tougher charges of planning that attack.

Idris was being detained on for involvement in the 2002 Bali nightclub bombings - which killed 202 mostly foreign tourists. Idris, a self-confessed militant, was accused of using a mobile telephone to detonate the smallest of the charges that went off on the night of the Bali bombings. He was also accused of being a treasurer of Jemaah Islamiyah - the Southeast Asian terrorist group behind the attacks.

But the judge ruled Monday the court would not consider those charges against Idris because of a legal technicality. Idris had been indicted under anti-terror legislation passed shortly after the Bali bombing. But last month the Constitutional Court ruled it was illegal to try suspects under laws passed after the alleged crime.

Idris himself has shown only limited remorse for his actions. Monday he said that if God judged his actions to have been wrong, then he apologized to the victims and their families. But if God judged his actions to have been right, then he hoped they were acceptable.