Indonesia police: Stadium exit gates too small for escape route
Indonesia men’s national football team captain Sukanto Sirjono and teammate Agung Laksono were detained on Tuesday after they tried to run for an exit gate on the pitch after a match.
The incident happened in the final minutes of Monday’s Group B Group C match against Vietnam in Bali. Sukanto, a 34-year-old defender from West Java, and Agung, a 26-year-old midfielder from West Java, had been ordered to stay in the penalty area after Indonesia scored a late equalizer.
According to the Indonesian football association, the men were trying to escape as a group when they were caught by team mates. The police did not show evidence of a deliberate act as Sukanto and Agung were part of the penalty area.
Sukanto and Agung were later released by police. Sukanto was forced into a taxi in the aftermath to return to the stadium as he does not have a driver’s license.
According to BBC Indonesia, Sukanto had told his lawyer at a meeting last night that he could not run for an exit gate since he is a policeman. Sukanto, however, was later spotted running for a gate at 1.30pm.
The police say that Sukanto and Agung may have broken the laws against running, although lawyers question whether they have a case against the police.
Police also said that Sukanto and Agung were wearing their police uniforms when confronted by the police.
Sukanto has been suspended from duty since last year after police complained that he repeatedly swore at their colleagues, using language that could be regarded as abusive.
The coach of Indonesia’s national women’s football team, Rianne van Dyk, said that she was disappointed Sukanto was not cleared of the charges, saying: “He was being treated unfairly. He will now be given the chance to prove his innocence.
“It sounds to me the police have never been able to prove the act