President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has agreed to extradite to the United States a 40-year-old Singaporean man accused of bomb-related smuggling, despite the absence of an extradition treaty with the US, an official said on Monday.
"President Jokowi has issued an agreement for the extradition process against Lim Yong Nam by considering the good relationship with the US," Riau Islands Police General Intelligence Sub-directorate head Adj. Sr. Comr. Armaini Merauxa told The Jakarta Post.
The decision by Jokowi was based on State Secretariat Letter No. 288/Setneg/03/2015, dated March 20 this year, and the extradition trial against Lim will be held in the near future.
"The extradition trial can be carried out without waiting for the pretrial of the concerned person. However, as we are concentrating on the pretrial, we will wait. In essence, the government has approved the extradition process against Lim Yong Nam," said Armaini.
On Monday, the Batam District Court resumed the pretrial hearing filed by Lim against the Riau Islands Police and the Batam Prosecutor's Office.
In the hearing's second session, the sole presiding judge Budiman Sitorus heard the reply from the defendants.
Lim, who is a fugitive from the US Justice Department, filed for the pretrial hearing to contest his detention of more than five months as having been imposed without a clear legal basis by the Riau Islands Police.
Lim's lawyer Zavrin Boy Kanu said the detention of his client was illegitimate and the hearing involves the Indonesian government, the Riau Islands Police and the Batam Prosecutor's Office. Lim is demanding more than Rp 1 billion (S$105,000) in damages for his detention.
Based on the Criminal Code, a detention is only valid for 50 days, while Lim had been detained by the Riau Police for 150 days, or more than five months after five extensions.
"Lim's detention violates basic human rights and the 1945 State Constitution on seizing the freedom of a person. We regard it as excessive and senseless. Which law is this based on?" asked Boy.
He added his client suffered Rp 1 million in material losses and Rp 1 billion in immaterial losses because of defamation of character. Boy added that his client had demanded the Indonesian government pay the Rp 1 billion plus Rp 1 million in compensation.
Lim was one of four Singaporeans accused of illegally exporting US-made radio modules as part of bomb components from the US to Iran.
They were accused of smuggling the devices to Iran through Singapore.
The case came to light in October 2011, when two of the Singaporeans had been extradited to the US. Since Singapore regarded Lim as innocent in the case, he was not sent to the US. However, the US has been firm about having Lim extradited to the US to face charges relating to the violation of a trade embargo against Iran.
Earlier, Gavin Chay, consul of the Republic of Singapore, said his government has continued to provide consular aid.
However, the Indonesian Ambassador to Singapore, Andri Hadi, said the Indonesian government has not received any opposition from Singaporean authorities to Lim's possible extradition to the US