- An Indonesian teacher found guilty of raping 13 students at an Islamic boarding school
- He impregnated at least eight of the victims, granting the prosecutor’s request for the death penalty, per report of AFP
An Indonesian court sentenced a teacher to death on Monday for raping 13 girls at an Islamic school, granting the prosecutor’s request for the death penalty.
Herry Wirawan’s case stunned Indonesia and drew attention to the importance of protecting children from sexual violence in religious boarding schools.
Wirawan was sentenced to life in prison at first. However, after Wirawan was sentenced to life in prison by a Bandung court in February, the prosecutor who had sought the death penalty filed an appeal.
According to a statement issued by the judge on Monday, the defendant will now face the death penalty. Herry’s attorney, Ira Mambo, declined to comment on whether an appeal would be filed, citing the need to review the full court decision.
During the February trial, it was revealed that Herry sexually abused 13 girls between 2016 and 2021. His victims ranged in age from 12 to 16, and eight of them became pregnant as a result of the rape.
Hidmat Dijaya, the uncle of one of Herry’s victims, stated that “we initially wanted punishments of life in prison and chemical castration so that he would feel the pain from his crime,” but that “the death sentence represents justice.”
The Bandung rape case has also drawn attention to the issue of sexual abuse in Indonesian schools, with 14 of the 18 incidents reported to the Child Protection Commission last year taking place in Islamic boarding schools.
Despite the fact that the country’s human rights commission believes the declared death penalty is not appropriate, officials in Indonesia, including the country’s child protection minister, have backed calls for the death penalty.
Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim majority country, has tens of thousands of Islamic boarding schools and other religious schools, which are frequently the only way for poor children to get an education.
With input from Agencies.