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Tommy given two days to choose his own fate

JAKARTA (JP): The South Jakarta Prosecutors' Office has given former president Soeharto's youngest son Hutomo "Tommy" Mandala Putra less than 48 hours to decide whether to ask for clemency or a review of the Supreme Court's verdict against him.

The head of the office, Antasari Azhar, said on Monday he had sent a second summons advising Hutomo to appear at his office on Wednesday morning at the latest.

"This afternoon, I sent the summons for the convicted to appear at my office on Wednesday morning at the latest. He'd better be ready at that time," Antasari said.

Hutomo failed to obey the first summons on Monday, claiming he had yet to receive a copy of the indictment sentencing him and business associate Ricardo Gelael to 18 months in prison each for graft in a Rp 95.4 billion (US$11.2 million) land exchange deal with the State Logistics Agency (Bulog) five years ago.

One of Hutomo's lawyers, Nudirman Munir, said his client had received the summons and would comply with it on Tuesday morning.

A team of five lawyers representing Hutomo met with Antasari on Monday.

"We will be ready for any action as soon as we complete studying the verdict," leader of the defense team, LMM Samosir, said.

Antasari hinted that Tommy's lawyers would prefer to request a review of the Supreme Court's decision.

About 20 minutes after the arrival of Tommy's defense team, Ricardo, accompanied by prominent lawyer Adnan Buyung Nasution, submitted appeals for presidential clemency and a delay in the implementation of his 18-month jail sentence.

"My client admits he was not conscientious in the land exchange deal with Bulog. He also has recovered around Rp 14 billion of the state losses.

"He feels remorse and pledges not to commit similar crimes. He has asked for a pardon and mercy from President Abdurrahman Wahid," Nasution told a joint news conference with Antasari. Both of Ricardo appeals were submitted to the South Jakarta District Court later in the day.

Nasution said Ricard