AGO Orders Revocation Of Fugitive’s Passport
In a desperate move to force fugitive Djoko Tjandra to return to the country, the Attorney General’s Office has asked authorities to revoke his passport.
The businessman, convicted for his role in the 1999 Bank Bali scandal, has ignored multiple summonses by prosecutors to serve his two-year jail sentence.
“We have requested the [South Jakarta Immigration Office] to revoke his passport,” Attorney General Hendarman Supandji said at a press conference.
Basyir Ahmad Barmawi, director general of immigration at the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, did not answer calls seeking comment on Friday.
Prosecutors believe the fugitive is hiding in Singapore, with whom Indonesia signed an extradition treaty in April 2007 but which has not yet come into force because the House of Representatives has not ratified it.
“If his passport is invalid, he must return to this country and without a passport he can no longer travel abroad,” Hendarma n said .
In a case review filed by prosecutors, Djoko and former Bank Indonesia Governor Sjahril Sabirin were convicted of corruption by the Supreme Court in relation to the Rp 905 billion ($88.7 million) in bank liquidity funds used to repay debts in Bank Bali in 1999.
Sjahril began serving his two-year term the day he was summoned by the Central Jakarta prosecutors office last month.
The verdict has triggered protests from the two men — who were previously acquitted by the top court over the same case — on the grounds that prosecutors could not request a case review.
Otto Cornelius Kaligis, a lawyer for Djoko who previously promised that the businessman would return to Indonesia on July 18 to serve his term, has said that prosecutors had violated his client’s rights with the case review.
But Hendarman said the country’s judiciary system accepted case reviews filed by prosecutors, following the precedent set by the high-profile murder case involving Pollycarpus Priyanto, who was sentenced to 20 years in jail for killing renowned rights activist Munir Said Thalib after the Supreme Court accepted a case review by prosecutors.
“The bottom line in a case review is the finding of new evidence that can be used to challenge a verdict,” Hendarman said. “Prosecutors lodged a case review because they found inconsistencies in the Supreme Court verdict.”
While Djoko and Sjahril were initially acquitted, a third defendant in the case, Pande Lubis, former deputy chief of the now-defunct Indonesia Bank Restructuring Agency, was sentenced to four years in jail and has already completed the term.
The conflicting verdicts in the case had prompted prosecutors to lodge a case review pursuing the conviction of Djoko and Sjahril, which was accepted by the Supreme Court last month, Hendarman said.