The Relevance of Certain Case Characteristics in the Successful Prosecution of Child Sexual Abuse Cases in Indonesia

Nathanael Sumampouw*, Henry Otgaar, Corine de Ruiter

*Corresponding author for this work

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Successful prosecution in child sexual abuse (CSA) cases is an essential purpose of law enforcement agencies to ensure accountability of perpetrators and children's safety. However, research has shown that legal prosecution of CSA cases is a highly complex endeavor resulting in only a limited percentage of cases being prosecuted and ultimately proven in court. Most attrition occurs at the stage of the police investigation. The current study is the first study of CSA prosecution in an Asian country. We aimed to identify factors, which contribute to Indonesian CSA cases prosecution. We examined police files of CSA cases (N = 179) from three police units in greater Jakarta. We found that only 32% (n = 58) of cases were prosecuted. The following factors increased the odds of prosecution: victim being threatened, the suspect confessed, medical examination report being present, duration of investigations between one to 2 months, and the case being charged under the Child Protection Law. These findings (threat, suspect confession, and the presence of a medical examination report) correspond to previous studies in other jurisdictions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)984-1003
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Child Sexual Abuse
Issue number8
Early online date2 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - 16 Nov 2020


  • Child sexual abuse
  • case prosecution
  • police investigation
  • Indonesia
  • RAPE

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