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Last Updated: Monday, 30 June, 2003, 09:42 GMT 10:42 UK
Key Bali bomb suspect captured
Idris
Idris is accused of involvement in planning the Bali attack
One of the main suspects in last October's Bali bombings in Indonesia has been arrested, a senior official has said.

The man, called Idris, was captured during a three-day police operation which started on 12 June in the north Sumatran capital of Medan.

The announcement came as prosecutors demanded the death penalty for another of the bombing suspects - Amrozi bin Nurhasyim - usually referred to as Amrozi.

The 40-year-old mechanic has admitted plotting, organising and carrying out the terror attack.

More than 30 suspects have been arrested in connection with the 12 October attack on two nightclubs in Bali.

Indonesia has blamed the attacks on the regional Islamic group Jemaah Islamiah.

National detective chief Erwin Mappaseng told reporters that Idris was one of five men who masterminded the nightclub bombings, in which 202 people died.

No immediate reason was given for the delay in announcing his arrest.

'Planning other attacks'

Bali police chief Major General I Made Mangku Pastika said that Idris, alias Jhoni Hendrawan or Gembrot, was part of a gang that robbed a bank in Medan last month.

Amrozi arriving at the Jakarta courtroom
Amrozi is the first Bali suspect to receive a sentencing demand

He said the money was to be used in another terror attack.

Mr Mappaseng said Idris was counting the loot from the bank robbery at the time of his arrest.

"He has confessed to his entire role in the (Bali) bombing," Mr Pastika told The Associated Press. "This is a very important arrest," he said.

Police says Idris played a logistics role in the Bali bombing, acting as a link between the planners and the field operatives.

He is also accused of gathering funds for the attack, and of organising transport and accommodation for the bombers in the days leading up to the bombings.

Amrozi 'prepared'

Amrozi has already admitted his role, telling judges that foreign tourists threatened Indonesia's future and that violence was the only language they understood.

Prosecutor Urip Trigunawan said Amrozi "deserved to die".

"We conclude that the defendant is responsible for terrorist acts that have caused anxiety, damage and the loss of lives," he told the Denpasar District Court.

Prosecutors have accused him of buying the materials and the minivan used in one of the attacks.

Amrozi, whom the Australian press dubbed the "laughing bomber" after he appeared, giggling, before the media shortly after his arrest, reportedly listened impassively and stroked his beard when the sentence request was made.

The father of an Australian killed in the bombings, Antony Stewart, cried out, "Amrozi, you die!", according to the Associated Press.

His defence lawyer had earlier said that his client was mentally prepared for the death penalty - the first sentencing demand for any of the suspects standing trial over the Bali attacks.

Amrozi's older brother, Mukhlas, has also admitted a role in the Bali attacks.

But last week, Mukhlas told the court during his trial that police interrogators had tortured him into making that confession.



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