Top Indonesia judge gets 8 years in prison for corruption

Constitutional Court Judge Patrialis Akbar, center, is escorted by security officers after his sentencing hearing at the Corruption Court in Jakarta, Indonesia, Monday, Sept. 4, 2017. The court has sentenced Akbar, one of the country's top judges, to eight years in prison for receiving thousands of dollars from a meat importer to influence the outcome of a judicial review of the law on animal husbandry. (AP Photo)

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Indonesia's corruption court on Monday sentenced one of the country's top judges to eight years in prison for taking bribes, the second time a Constitutional Court judge has been imprisoned for bribery since 2014.

A five-member panel of judges ruled that Patrialis Akbar was guilty of receiving thousands of dollars from a meat importer to influence the outcome of a judicial review of the law on animal husbandry.

Akbar was caught in an anti-graft sting in January, Indonesia's anti-corruption police say.

Akbar, a law and human rights minister under former President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, denied any wrongdoing. After the sentencing, he said it was up to God to decide what was right and wrong.

The meat importer, Basuki Hariman, was earlier sentenced to seven years in prison and his secretary, Ng Fay, received five years.

The judges said Akbar received $10,000 in expenses to perform minor hajj and about $300 for golf expenses. The panel also fined Akbar $22,500 or a further three months in prison.

In 2014, Akil Mohtar, the former chairman of the nine-member panel of judges of the Constitutional Court, was sentenced to life in prison for accepting bribes. Mohtar also was caught by the Corruption Eradication Commission.

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