Irawaty Wardany , The Jakarta Post , Jakarta
Saleh, now a member of the House of Representatives' Commission VII overseeing mining and environmental affairs, was blamed for illegally approving the purchase.
"The defendant is proven legally and convincingly guilty of committing collective graft to enrich other people and a corporation," presiding judge Moefri told the court Thursday.
Saleh was also fined Rp 200 million ($21,869).
The court sentenced former Makassar mayor Baso Aminudin Maula to four years in jail last March in the same case.
The graft case also implicates businessman Hengky Samuel Daud, who is at large, former Medan mayor Abdillah and his former deputy Ramli.
The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) is developing its investigation into the case, which evolved around an official circular issued by then home minister Hari Sabarno in 2003.
The circular appointed Hengky's company PT Istana Sarana Karya the sole provider of fire engines for several regional administrations.
The then director general of regional autonomy Oentarto Sindung Mawardi, who drafted the circular, admitted to receiving Rp 25 million from Hengky.
Oentarto has also been named a suspect in the case, but his former boss has not.
KPK questioned Home Affairs Minister Mardiyanto on Wednesday as a witness in the case. The Central Java administration under Mardiyanto procured three fire engines based on Hari's memo. Mardiyanto said the procurement was in accordance with his authority.
Saleh told the court he issued a deposition for the direct appointment of Istana to procure the fire engines based.
In his statement, the judge said corruption was a formal offense, which meant the action was punishable regardless of its effects.
"If an action can or may lead to state losses, it can be said a crime has taken place," he said.
He said that because of Saleh's decision to directly appoint Istana to supply the fire engines, he had enriched former Riau administration secretary Aswar Wahab, a Riau legislative member Sudarman Ade, Zaidir MN and Oentarto, who received money amounting to between Rp 20 million and Rp 45 million from Hengky.
Saleh's request to unfreeze his accounts in several banks was rejected by the judges, who said the accounts were not part of the case's evidence and thus outside the court's jurisdiction.
Both Saleh and his lawyers asked for time to decide on whether to appeal the verdict.