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Indonesian bomb-maker gets life sentence

An Indonesian Muslim militant was sentenced to life in jail on Thursday for helping to make bombs that blew up two nightclubs on Bali in 2002, killing 202 people.
/ Source: Reuters

An Indonesian Muslim militant was sentenced to life in jail on Thursday for helping to make the bombs that tore through two nightclubs on the resort island of Bali in 2002, killing 202 people.

Sarjiyo, alias Zaenal Abidin, 32, was found guilty by a court on the resort island of helping to carry out an act of terrorism.

The attacks killed mostly foreign holidaymakers.

“The defendant participated in the planning meetings...and was assigned to assemble the bombs,” Chief Judge Arif Supratman told Bali’s Denpasar district court.

“The defendant also did not regret his actions which he deemed as an obligation against the United States. His crime was an organized crime within a cell system that endangered Indonesia’s image,” the judge said.

Indonesian authorities blame the Bali blasts on Jemaah Islamiah, a Southeast Asian Muslim militant network linked to al-Qaeda.

Sarjiyo, clad in a crisp white shirt and grey Muslim skullcap, immediately said he would appeal.

The Indonesian court has delivered jail sentences ranging from three years to the death penalty to more than two dozen men linked to the blasts on October 12, 2002, the worst act of terror since the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.

Several more suspects are still on trial or are due to face charges in connection with the attacks.

Indonesian police are still hunting key suspects, including British-educated Malaysian fugitive Azahari, accused of being the master bomb-maker.

The Indonesian-born Jemaah Islamiah militant believed to be the mastermind of the Bali blasts, Hambali, was captured in Thailand in August and is in U.S. custody at a secret location.

Indonesian requests for direct access have so far been denied by the United States, which is investigating him in connection with the September 11 attacks.