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Indonesia Court: Wahid Must Pay

September 24, 2001

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JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Indonesia’s ex-president was found guilty of defaming a former state official and ordered to pay $52,000 in compensation, court officials said Monday.

The Jakarta district court found Abdurrahman Wahid ``acted improperly″ by accusing former secretary general of the forestry ministry, Suripto, of trying to undermine his administration.

Suripto, like many Indonesians, uses only one name.

Wahid also accused Suripto of assisting the fugitive son of former dictator Suharto, Hutomo ``Tommy″ Mandala Putra, to escape justice after being sentenced to jail for corruption.

Wahid was dismissed as head of state in July.

A court official, Fatma, said Wahid’s lawyers hadn’t decided if they would appeal.

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