National Police Spokesman Insp. Gen. Argo Yuwono, left, visits Beritasatu Media Holdings in Jakarta on July 8, 2020. (B1 Photo/Joanito De Saojoao)

Disgraced Officer in Djoko Tjandra Saga Yet to Become Suspect


JULY 27, 2020

Jakarta. A high ranking police officer accused of discreetly facilitating the return of graft fugitive Djoko Tjandra has not been slapped with criminal charges, despite having been detained for 10 days, a source said on Sunday.

Brig. General Prasetijo Utomo was detained by the National Police Internal Affairs Division for producing travel documents, including a Covid-19 free certificate, which enabled Djoko to travel between cities in Indonesia.


Djoko has fled his graft conviction and two years’ imprisonment since 2009. Investigation revealed that he returned in May to obtain an ID card and Indonesian passport.

He also visited the South Jakarta District Court to submit legal challenge against his conviction, and travelled to Pontianak, the capital of West Kalimantan, in June. 

Reports said that the disgraced officer was so deeply involved to an extent that he was aboard the same plane with Djoko during the Jakarta-Pontianak flight.

An officer familiar with the investigation confirmed that Prasetijo has not been named a criminal suspect.

“But one thing is for sure: he is not alone in this case. Therefore the warrant on the commencement of investigation mentions ‘Prasetijo Utomo et al.’,” the officer said.

Two other high-ranking officers have been removed from a division that oversees the National Central Bureau (NCB) of the Interpol in Jakarta and transferred to less important jobs at the National Police headquarters, upon reports that Djoko was no longer on the Interpol wanted list. 

Djoko, who turns 69 next month, was found guilty by the Supreme Court for corruption related to Bank Bali debts and sentenced to two years in jail and ordered to repay the state hundreds of billions of rupiah in June 2009. He had already left for Papua New Guinea the day before the sentencing was delivered, prompting prosecutors and police to issue a red notice to the Interpol.
It emerged that the NCB Jakarta has revoked the red notice since 2014 without the consent of prosecutors.

In another development, Anita Kolopaking, a lawyer for Djoko, has been banned from traveling abroad since Wednesday but she wasn’t named a suspect either. The police said they need Anita to remain in the country as a witness in the internal investigation against Prasetijo.

Anita Kolopaking, center, a lawyer for graft fugitive Djoko Tjandra. (B1/Photo)
Anita Kolopaking, center, a lawyer for graft fugitive Djoko Tjandra. (B1/Photo)

Police spokesman Argo Yuwono declined to comment when asked there were no criminal charges against the three officers and the lawyer.

“We’d better wait because investigators are still working,” Argo said on Sunday.