Ex-Indonesia sports official gets prison for graft

Jakarta: Indonesia`s anti-graft court sentenced a former Cabinet minister today to four years in prison for corruption related to the construction of a multi million-dollar sports complex.

Former Youth and Sports Minister Andi Alfian Mallarangeng resigned after being accused of wrongdoing by the Corruption Eradication Commission, which arrested him in December 2012.

A five-member panel of the court ruled that Mallarangeng was guilty of abusing power by enriching himself and other officials.

Mallarangeng, who was also the secretary of the board of patrons of the ruling Democratic Party, was convicted of receiving about 720,000 USD from the contractor of the 122 million USD sports complex in the West Java village of Hambalang.

The 51-year-old Mallarangeng said he would appeal the verdict, which also fined him 17,000 USD or to serve two more months behind bars.

Another Cabinet official facing corruption charges is former Religious Affairs Minister Suryadharma Ali, who also leads the Islamic-based United Development Party. Ali is accused of enriching himself or other people in connection with expenses for the 2012-13 hajj to Mecca.
Endemic graft in Indonesia has been blamed for deterring foreign investment, and Transparency International regularly lists the country among the most corrupt nations.

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