YOGYAKARTA, INDONESIA: A 19-year-old man was apprehended on charges of fabricating a false story about sexual harassment targeting new students within the Faculty of Mathematics and Science (FMIPA) at Yogyakarta State University (UNY).
The arrest was made on grounds of defamation.
On 10 November, shockwaves rippled through the Yogyakarta State University (UNY) community when allegations of sexual harassment, implicating a member of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences (FMIPA) Student Executive Board (BEM) with the initials MF, emerged on social media.
The scandal originated from a tweet posted on the @UNYmfs account, where a distressed female student disclosed her experience as the alleged victim.
Although the original post has been removed, it has been widely reposted by various accounts.
In her tweet, the student expressed disbelief at the mistreatment and harassment she claimed to have endured during her freshman year at UNY.
She detailed an encounter with a senior student whom she initially perceived as friendly during a faculty event in February.
However, her narrative took a stark turn as she accused the student of subjecting her to harassment from October onwards.
In response to the accusations, MF vehemently denied any wrongdoing.
He conveyed a sense of being unjustly accused and defamed by the viral posts circulating on social media, expressing concern about the threat to his reputation.
He stated his readiness to take legal action and appealed for the accuser’s good intentions, emphasizing the widespread damage caused by the allegations.
Police confirm fabrication of hoax: Motivated by rejection from student community at university
A 19-year-old man identified as RAN was apprehended for concocting a fabricated story about sexual harassment targeting new students at the Faculty of Mathematics and Science (FMIPA) at Yogyakarta State University (UNY).
The arrest was made on charges of defamation.
The accused, a resident of Jogja, allegedly employed the method of spreading false news to tarnish the reputation of the victim, MF, a 21-year-old student from South Sumatra.
During a press release at the Yogyakarta Special Region Regional Police Headquarters on Monday (13 Nov), Senior Commissioner Nugroho Ariyanto, the Head of Public Relations, revealed that RAN had created a narrative accusing MF, a BEM UNY administrator, of harassment against new students.
The suspect disseminated the hoax narrative on the social media platform X.
Senior Commissioner Idham Mahdi of the Special Criminal Investigation Directorate of Yogyakarta Special Region Police stated that RAN confessed to spreading fake news.
The suspect attributed his actions to feelings of hurt, explaining that he was unwell as a result of being rejected from joining a student community while MF was accepted.
RAN faces charges under Article 45A paragraph (1) in conjunction with Article 28 paragraph (1) and/or Article 45 paragraph (3) in conjunction with Article 27 paragraph (3) of Law No. 19 of 2016 concerning Information and Electronic Technology.
Additionally, he is charged under Article 14 paragraph (1) of Law No. 1 of 1946 concerning criminal law regulations, with a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.