Court asked to halt investigation into Indonesian port corporation graft case

Court asked to halt investigation into Indonesian port corporation graft case
Richard Joost Lino (left), then president director of state-owned port operator PT Pelindo II, speaks in a hearing at the House of Representatives.
PHOTO: The Jakarta Post/ANN

The lawyer of graft suspect Richard Joost (RJ) Lino, Maqdir Ismail, said he has asked the South Jakarta District Court to temporarily halt the Corruption Eradication Commission's (KPK) investigation into a corruption case related to the procurement of three cranes for the state-owned port operation, PT Pelindo II, which allegedly involved the company's former president director.

The lawyer said he had conveyed the request via an official letter to the court.

"We have asked the court to make a decision ordering the KPK to temporarily halt its investigation into the case," said Maqdir as quoted by kompas.com at the South Jakarta District Court on Monday.

He said the request was submitted because Lino was currently in a process to examine the legality of the KPK's move to name him a graft suspect through a pretrial motion.

Therefore, Maqdir said, the KPK must temporarily halt its investigation into the Lino case unless there was a legal certainty about whether his being named was legal.

"Each time the naming of a suspect in a case is examined in court, all investigations into the case must be halted," he said.

Moreover, the lawyer further said, it appeared that the KPK aimed to avoid the pretrial motion filed by Lino.

This could be seen from the absence of the antigraft body from his client's first pretrial hearing on Monday.

The KPK had even requested the court to delay the hearing for two weeks.

Maqdir said he was worried that the KPK would use the time to complete Lino's case document and immediately send it to prosecutors to avoid a pretrial hearing.

He said that if Lino's investigation was declared complete and KPK prosecutors officially handed over the case to the court, his client's pretrial hearing request might be stopped by the court's judicial panel.

This had happened in several cases handled by the KPK.

Maqdir admitted that his client's pretrial hearing request did not have any legal basis. However, for the sake of the principles of justice, his request must be considered relevant and the court should grant the request.

The KPK named Lino a suspect on Dec. 18, 2015 in a corruption case related to the procurement of three quay container cranes in 2010.

Lino is accused of enriching himself by violating standard procedures and directly appointing Chinese company Wuxi Huadong Heavy Machinery Co. Ltd. (HDHM) as the supplier of the three cranes.

Lino is charged with Article 2(1) and/or Article 3 of Law No. 31/1999 in reference to Law No. 20/2001 on corruption eradication and Article 55(1) of the Criminal Code.

Lino filed the pretrial motion against his being named a graft suspect with the South Jakarta District Court in December 2015.

The KPK failed to attend Lino's first pretrial hearing on Monday. The court's judicial panel decided to reschedule the hearing to Jan. 18.

More about

Purchase this article for republication.

BRANDED CONTENT

SPONSORED CONTENT

Your daily good stuff - AsiaOne stories delivered straight to your inbox
By signing up, you agree to our Privacy policy and Terms and Conditions.