Indonesia court acquits Playboy editor - lawyer

JAKARTA, June 23 Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:50am EDT

JAKARTA, June 23 (Reuters) - Indonesia's Supreme Court acquitted Playboy Indonesia's editor of distributing indecent pictures and profiting from them in a legal review, his lawyer said on Thursday, after the court last year sentenced him to two years in jail.

Playboy's local editor Erwin Arnada, whose magazine contained no nudity, is currently behind bars serving a sentence, which critics said highlighted the growing pressure from Islamist groups for a more restrictive society in the predominantly Muslim country.

"We have received a confirmation from the Supreme Court that it has granted a judicial review of Erwin Arnada," prominent lawyer Todung Mulya Lubis told Reuters by telephone. "It shows that it is committed to uphold press freedom in Indonesia," Lubis said, saying his client would be released soon.

He said he had not been told of the reason for the acquittal.

In 2008, Indonesia passed an anti-pornography law, seen by many as a threat to the country's reputation for tolerance and freedom of expression.

The world's fourth most populous country has the largest Muslim community and is also home to Christian, Hindu, Budha and Confucian minorities. (Reporting by Olivia Rondonuwu; Editing by Neil Chatterjee and Yoko Nishikawa)