Nasty Balinese Police Methods 5 – Selective Interpretation & Application
By Bali BS News
Sep 21, 2005, 08:11
If you have followed our series of “Nasty Balinese Police Methods”, we hope we have impressed upon you how hard, perhaps impossible it is to get justice in Bali / Indonesia. From pre-investigations that do not constitute “real investigations” through to so-called “criminal libel” where anyone with police contacts can have someone jailed for telling the truth. Then again to unlawfully served summons being abused by the police to put their victims in jail without good cause for 60 days or even longer, and even unlawfully abusing Interpol to inflict revenge on victims who have escaped the Balinese police’s clutches and remained overseas. Balinese police make a mockery out of the term “justice” and surely must be the island’s number one public enemies. But their vile acts do not stop there.
Indonesian criminal law is a farce, and getting worse. As we reported elsewhere Mark Trowell QC, a respected Perth lawyer appointed by the Australian government to head the Schapelle Corby appeal in Bali says he was told by her now former principle defense [sic] lawyer [sic], Vasu Rasiah, that he needed 500,000 AUD to bribe the judges and that there was no such thing in Indonesia as a lawyer, just negotiators. The Indonesians do not allow foreign lawyers to practice law there, nor have offices in Indonesia. Some International law firms get around this by setting up associated offices or partnerships, in order to offer their global clients coverage, but these do not get involved in criminal law “because of its difficult nature”. Difficult? Indonesia has very simple and few laws, so why is it difficult? Could it possibly be the only way to stay out of jail if the police are “gunning” for you is to pay them off, as they own the whole system? Why else would Indonesian lawyers all be negotiators, not lawyers?
The final part in our series is therefore what happens to people at the hands of the corrupt Balinese mafia police and their colluding prosecutors and judges, if they do not pay off the police and friends, if the matter goes to court. We have seen how people are apparently routinely and unlawfully thrown into jail if they upset the police with the case of Candi Internet Bali. In our follow up article to this, Bali Courts, you will see a perfect example of judicial selective interpretation & application. That is, ignoring law, interpreting certain laws extremely, and applying it only to victims they know or rather believe they can get away with it.
This is where the corrupt police, the prosecutor and the judge all ignore legal code that does not suit their purpose, where they misrepresent criminal code so extremely so as to be ludicrous, and where they ignore the mass of other, more powerful people who are similarly “breaking” the same law as the police's victim. What is worse they do it blatantly and even in defiance of requests by the Indonesian president himself to apply certain new legal code in certain legal proceedings. For example, in the recent case of the renowned Indonesian newspaper Tempo Interactive’s editor, Bambang Harimurty, being sentenced to 12 months jail for criminal libel even though a special press law (40/1999) had been implemented to deal with alleged crimes by the media, and despite the fact the president and many pressure groups had asked the judges to use the press law. In other words, the judges did what they damn well pleased!
In another media case, two Indonesian journalists were jailed because they did not first verify the accuracy of their story with the person they published the story about! The story was about how a local senior Golkar party (Suharto’s party of course) official had reneged on his promise to pay bribe money to people who voted the way he wanted them to in the elections! Oh sure, he was going to confirm that as fact to a newspaper! In the recent BNI (Bank Negara Indonesia) fraud case where a group of bank employees and outside collaborators embezzled US$126 million from the bank, Indonesia’s Trust Financial and Legal Magazine were fined $115,000 for discrediting leading businessman John Hamenda by naming him in an article entitled “A gang of thieves hits state Bank Negara Indonesia”. The trouble with all this is John Hamenda was sentenced to 20 years in jail for his part in the robbery. So how was he defamed?
If you think that is a joke, it is, but it isn’t a funny joke. The corrupt police and judiciary in Indonesia obviously ignore the law, ignore the president, ignore public opinion, misconstrue the law they do use and apply it only to those people they have an agenda against; which generally means critics and people who refuse to pay them extortion money. Depending on which way you look at it, the widely acknowledged corrupt Indonesian judiciary and police are either completely out of control, or the ones in real control of Indonesia.
Our other nasty police methods articles;
Bali Police Complaints, Bali Police Summons, Interpol Corruption, Indonesian Criminal Libel.
Please, we ask all potential visitors to and investors in Bali / Indonesia to boycott the place until the Indonesian Government do what they need to; get rid of corruption within the police, judiciary and civil service generally.