09 December 2008

Indonesian Celebrities and the Law

Celebrity is everywhere and people's fascination with celebrity is insatiable. This is a good thing for those people who make their fortunes of the misfortunes and stupidity of celebrities. Some people do not court celebrity but have to bear it as a result of their fame or infamy. In this regard Indonesia is no different from any other place on earth.

Nevertheless, it does seem that some Indonesians feel that their celebrity places them above the law or at least outside of any effect it might have on them. Whenever an Indonesian celebrity gets into trouble there is always speculation as to who they know, or more specifically what connections they have that may assist them in avoiding the rap.

This is the case in the recent Marcella Zalianty affair. Zalianty is accused of having her boyfriend, Ananda Mikola a race driver wanna be, and Moreno Soeprapto, beat up another colleague over an alleged debt. All three have been questioned and Zalianty has been detained.

The story still has a few twist and turns to go. The latest is that the victim, Agung Setyawan, was not beaten by the accused on the orders of Zalianty, but rather was beaten by his own brother. The plot thickens.

Yet, the point is no matter what the final truth may be, it seems that Indonesian celebrities have a penchant for getting into trouble or being accused of being in some trouble. And hence, the question posed, "Do celebrities think that the laws that apply to the rest of us do not apply to them because of their celebrity?"

Just wondering...


therry said...

What I can't stop wondering is the fact that MZ might spend 12 or so years in prison if proven guilty for the crime of kidnapping and abusing Agung Setiawan (or whatever his last name is), when an average government official who's got caught in corrupting as much as 30 billion rupiah or whatever only get sentenced for 4 years.

That's insane!

schmerly said...

Yea therry the old KKN is still alive and well in Indonesia.

Rob Baiton said...


This has always been an interesting part of the enforcement of law and the deterrent effect.

Lesser crimes attracting the more severe punishment is as my colleagues would say, "arse about face sentencing".


Myabe it is KKN or maybe it is just a skewed sense of what is serious and what is grave when it comes to punishment.

rima fauzi said...

Celebs nowadays are just like anak pejabats in the old days (and still now too). They think they're above the law, which isn't strange seeing as the people (read: the poor) kinda idolizes them, and the law aren't as strict for them as it is for the commoners.

Sad fact, but true.

Rob Baiton said...


Sad but true on the part about thinking they are above the law.

The poor always get screwed no matter what, not just on the law.

schmerly said...

As my old granddad used to say: there's a law for the rich and there's a law for the poor!

And it's still true today, you should know Rob.

boneman said...

here is very similar.
Folks of high status always seem so unbelieving when they are accosted for bad behavior and such.
Even so far as murder.

How is it that they feel their money mass can balance their bad behavior?
Well, like great jobs, they just assume that we all pay for their fun.