Yayat Cahdiyat, the suspect who allegedly detonated a low-explosive device near Pandawa Park in Bandung, West Java, on Monday morning (27/02) is affiliated with the radical Islamic State movement, a National Police spokesman said on Tuesday.
Yayat is an alleged member of the Jamaah Anshar Daulah (JAD) terrorist group, sometimes referred to as Jamaah Anshar Daulah Khilafah Nusantara (JAKDN). The group is believed to be related to Abu Sofi, a terror suspect who was killed in a shootout with police near Jatiluhur Dam in Purwakarta, West Java, late last year.
“[JAD] is active near Malang [East Java] and has actually pledged allegiance to Islamic State. JAD continues to plan terror acts throughout West Java, Bekasi, Central Java and East Kalimantan,” National Police spokesman Insp. Gen. Boy Rafli Amar said in Jakarta.
The group has been involved in several terror acts over the past few years.
Yayat was sentenced to three years in prison in 2012 for his involvement in terrorist training camp in Aceh. He was released on parole in 2014.
Bandung Police, using the Indonesia Automatic Fingerprint Identification System (Inafis), and West Java Police collected several pieces of evidence, including fingerprints, a cooking pot and a motorcycle used by the suspect in the attack.
However, the unsung heroes might very well be ordinary people who saw the attack unfold.
Rizal, a local resident, saw Yayat being chased by high school students after the bomb exploded.
“I stepped outside after I heard the explosion. To my surprise, I saw a man being chased by several teenagers. While they were chasing him, I became curious and started following them. He wore a jacket and a sort of ripped vest. We chased him until he entered an office building,” Rizal said on Tuesday.
Once inside, Yayat set fire to a room on the second floor of the building, before he was eventually shot in the chest by police during a brief firefight.
Another witness of the attack managed to find Yayat’s identity card and motorcycle registration document near the scene.
“So after the explosion, I saw some high school students chasing after the suspect. Instead of taking part in the chase, I went to the scene of the explosion and found a vehicle license and an ID card with Yayat’s name. He left his motorcycle behind,” said Yosep, a local resident.
Some witnesses claim that Yayat did not act alone, but this has not yet been conformed by police.