JAKARTA - The Indonesian maid arrested over the deaths of her employers in Singapore had planned the murder, according to national police spokesman Inspector General Setyo Wasisto.
"Based on the facts of the case, it may be considered a premeditated murder. She had planned the act, down to buying rope and tape (to restrain her victims)," he said on Monday (July 3) in Jakarta.
Indonesian maid Khasanah, who was on the run for almost a week after her employers, Mr Chia Ngim Fong, 79, and his wife Madam Chin Sek Fah, 78, were found tied up and later pronounced dead in their Bedok flat, was arrested on Tuesday night.
The 41-year-old was arrested in Indonesia's Tungkal Ilir of Jambi province, after local police raided her room at Hotel Nanber following a tip-off from residents.
At the time of her arrest, Khasanah was in the midst of planing to leave for Java, said Hotel Nanber owner Syartini, who like some Indonesians, go by only one name.
Khasanah had fled Singapore by the time her elderly employers were found dead in their Bedok flat.
General Setyo could not confirm how Khasanah left Singapore or entered Indonesia. But a source in Singapore familiar with the investigation had told The Straits Times on Sunday that she had left Singapore using her passport but was not stopped as her crime had not yet been discovered.
On the possible jail sentence that Khasanah may face if convicted, Gen Setyo said: "Could be 20 years, or could even be a death sentence at maximum." Khasanah is now in the national police detective unit's lock-up.
With additional reporting by Francis Chan