Jakarta. The National Police's Criminal Investigations Unit (Bareskrim) have arrested Raden Priyono, a former chief of the nation's upstream oil and gas regulator SKK Migas, and his former deputy for finance Djoko Harsono in a graft case allegedly resulting from a deal made by the regulator in 2009.
The duo was arrested after being questioned by Bareskrim investigators on Thursday (11/02) in relation to the embezzlement and money laundering case of Trans-Pacific Petrochemical Indotama (TPPI).
The case began when the regulating agency – then known as BP Migas – directly appointed privately owned TPPI to sell its condensate, which went against company regulations.
Instead of selling the condensate to state-owned energy firm Pertamina, as then-vice president Jusuf Kalla instructed, TPPI made another deal with another company.
The troubled sales process, according to police investigations, reportedly incurred state losses of Rp 2 trillion ($148 million).
Police have also named TPPI's former owner Honggo Wendratmo in the case. However, Honggo failed to fulfill a police summons on Thursday as he is currently in Singapore.
Raden's lawyer, Supriyadi Adi, called the arrests subjective and groundless.
“The reason [police gave], which is to prevent [my client from] escaping, doesn't make sense. Meanwhile, why was Honggo never questioned?” he said.
Supriyadi said the his client is the victim of a policy made by the Energy Ministry's former director for oil and gas Evita Legowo and former finance minister Sri Mulyani, who approved the payment.