‘Tjandra will not affect ties’

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday July 24th, 2012

INDONESIA does not expect the current impasse with Papua New Guinea over fugitive Djoko Tjandra to seriously affect relations between the two countries, the Jakarta Globe newspaper reported yesterday.
“Indonesia and Papua New Guinea’s relationship is comprehensive, so this problem will not disrupt it, especially since we’re neighbouring countries,” Foreign ministry spokesman Michael Tene said.
Tjandra is on Interpol’s most-wanted list and is believed to be hiding in Papua New Guinea which recently bestowed
citizenship on him.
Justice Minister Amir Syamsuddin said his government was still lobbying PNG to give up Tjandra.
Amir said getting Tjandra home would be a lengthy process because the countries did not have an extradition agreement.
Deputy Attorney- General Darmono said he had talked with PNG’s ambassador to Indonesia, Peter Ilau, and that PNG was deliberating Indonesia’s extradition request .
“We’ll just wait for whatever developments from the Papua New Guinea government,” he said.
Tjandra faces a two-year prison sentence and a fine of 15 million (K3,371) for his role in a graft scandal.
His now-defunct Bank Bali paid a US$70 million(K148.77million) “commission” to Era Giat Prima, one of his companies, which was linked to the then-ruling Golkar Party, for help in the recovery of loans owed by the Indonesian Bank Restructuring Agency.
Tjandra is wanted by Interpol after he fled Indonesia in 2009, hours before the Supreme Court convicted him of embezzling 586 billion rupiah (US$62 million). He is causing contriversy.
Jakarta Globe