Police in Tangerang regency, Banten are investigating the death of a teenage girl who is believed to have died after she was drugged and gang raped by seven men, one of whom was her boyfriend.
According to the police, the 16-year-old victim had recently met one of the suspects online and dated him. On April 18, her boyfriend picked her up at around 1am and took her to a house in Pagedangan sub-district, where six of his friends were waiting.
The boyfriend then pleaded for sex with the victim. The suspects claim that the victim agreed as long as they gave her hexymer — a prescription drug used to treat Parkinson’s disease, commonly abused in Indonesia and is colloquially known as “pil kuning” (yellow pill) — and IDR100K (US$7) each.
The victim then consumed three pills at once, which knocked her out. The suspects then took their turn raping her and gave her the money she was promised when she regained consciousness.
The victim’s family refuted the suspects’ claim, saying she was coerced into sex and gang raped. At any rate, given that the victim was a minor, whichever version of the incident actually occurred can only be categorized as statutory rape. The suspects are all above 18, with police revealing that one of them is 27.
On May 26, police said the victim fell ill and was admitted to a mental health facility. Police didn’t specify what the victim suffered, but she passed away on June 11.
The police have yet to establish a clear link between the April 18 incident and the victim’s death. Nonetheless, four of the seven suspects, including the victim’s boyfriend, have been arrested on charges of rape of a minor, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Police say the investigation is still ongoing, which opens up the possibility of harsher punishments for the suspects if they were found to be responsible for the victim’s death.
The remaining three suspects are still on the run as of today.
In 2016, after the brutal gang rape and murder of a teenage girl in Bengkulu, President Joko Widodo signed a Perppu (Presidential Regulation In Lieu of Law) introducing the death penalty and chemical castration for convicted child molesters. Activists say that the threat of severe punishment has not been as successful a deterrent as the government hoped, as sexual assault against children continue to be a serious problem in Indonesia.
Subscribe to The Coconuts Podcast for top trending news and pop culture from Southeast Asia and Hong Kong every Friday!