Police said an angry crowd on Thursday in Indonesia set a man ablaze after they accused him of stealing an audio amplifier from a mosque.
The head of the local police’s criminal investigations, Rizal Marito, said locals chased the 30-year-old man after he was seen emerging from a mosque in Bekasi district, near the Indonesian capital, with the amplifier.
“The mosque’s caretaker shouted ‘Thief!’ and people chased him,” he said. The man was caught about two kilometres from the mosque and beaten, with some in the crowd pouring petrol on the man and setting him alight. He died on the spot from injuries and severe burns.
Marito denied local media reports that the man was a technician who was taking out the amplifier for repair. According to the police, the victim’s family will not press charges. Vigilante justice is common in Indonesia, where public distrust of the police and the justice system is high.