Fri, Mar 16, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Migrant sentenced to 15 years for his girlfriend’s murder

FIT OF RAGE:The couple were at a friend’s house and were about to hand themselves in so that they could be deported when the killing occurred

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

The Supreme Court yesterday upheld a murder conviction against an Indonesian migrant worker for killing his girlfriend, rejecting his defense lawyer’s appeal and sentencing him to 15 years in prison.

Prosecutors said that, on Feb. 14 last year, Jaryanto, who was 36 at the time, murdered his girlfriend Sopiah, 40, while they were staying with an Indonesian friend, who ran a store in Yilan.

The couple were only identified by their first names.

National Immigration Agency (NIA) records showed that Jaryanto and Sopiah entered Taiwan in 2011. Jaryanto was on a labor contract, while Sopiah had a caregiver job with a family.

Prosecutors said the couple left their jobs the following year, before the legal termination of their contracts, and became “unaccounted for foreign workers” when they ran away to a mountain village in central Taiwan, where they worked as unregistered farm laborers.

They were unaccounted for for five years, but early last year they decided to report themselves to the police and NIA because they wanted to return to Indonesia.

They were staying at their friend’s house in Yilan temporarily before they intended to give themselves up, but got into a heated dispute.

Jaryanto, in a fit of anger, beat Sophia up and used a blunt object to hit her over the head, prosecutors said.

Their friend heard the commotion, went to their room and saw Jaryanto cleaning up blood from the floor.

Jaryanto had stuffed Sopiah’s body into a cardboard box, prosecutors said.

The friend called the police and Jaryanto admitted to the assault, but said he was not in a conscious state at the time and did not intend to kill his girlfriend.

The court ruling said there was sufficient evidence to prove Jaryanto had taken Sopiah’s life.

However, he was sentenced to 15-years in prison because he had admitted to the crime and did not have a criminal record in Taiwan.

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