Sofyan Basir, left, former president director of state utility firm Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN), is embraced by a relative after the Jakarta Anti-Corruption Court acquitted him on Monday of all charges related to his alleged involvement in bribery in the Riau-1 coal-fired power plant project. (Antara Photo/Puspa Perwitasari)

Former PLN Chief Sofyan Basir Acquitted of All Charges in Riau-1 Graft Case

BY :FANA SUPARMAN & TELLY NATHALIA

NOVEMBER 04, 2019

Jakarta. The Jakarta Anti-Corruption Court on Monday acquitted Sofyan Basir, former president director of state utility company Perusahaan Listrik Negara, of all charges related to his alleged involvement in bribery in the Riau-1 coal-fired power plant project.

The prosecution initially demanded five years' imprisonment and a fine of Rp 200 million ($14,000), or an additional three months' imprisonment, for Sofyan.

The Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) declared him a suspect in April after finding convincing evidence in its investigation against four other suspects: Eni Maulani Saragih, former deputy chairwoman of House of Representatives Commission VII, which oversees energy affairs; Johannes Budisutrisno Kotjo, a shareholder in miner Blackgold Natural Resources; Idrus Marham, a former social affairs minister; and Samin Tan, owner of Borneo Lumbung Energi & Metal.

KPK investigators alleged that Sofyan had assisted Eni in securing a bribe from Johannes.

The former banker had been detained since May, after his first questioning session.

"First, declaring that Sofyan Basir was not proven guilty as alleged on the first and second counts… thirdly, ordering the release of Sofyan Basir after nine months in detention," Justice Hariono said in his verdict.

Johannes paid a Rp 4.75 billion bribe to Eni and Idrus to ensure that Samantaka Batubara, a subsidiary of Singapore-based Blackgold Natural, was included in the $900 million power plant project.

Eni was sentenced to six years' imprisonment, while Idrus got three years. The Jakarta High Court jailed Johannes for four years.

Work on the Riau-1 coal-fired power plant project has been suspended due to the case.

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