Indonesian police verifying documents seized from Equanimity

Modified 1 Mar 2018, 10:33 am

Indonesian police are in the process of evaluating documents seized from businessperson Jho Low’s superyacht as part of its investigations into suspected money laundering activities.

Daniel Silitonga, who is deputy director of economic and special crimes in the republic's central police department, said the police are currently identifying the main suspect before deciding whether to proceed further according to provisions under Indonesia's anti-money laundering laws.

"We are investigating, evaluating the data and documents obtained.

"We will identify the suspect after we have completed our investigations," Silitonga was quoted by Indonesian news portal Detiknews as saying this morning.

He added that the police are also prepared to press charges if their investigations revealed enough evidence to do so.

Indonesian authorities, together with the US Federal Bureau of Investigations, had yesterday spent six hours on board the superyacht known as the Equanimity, which was seized along the coast of Benoa, near Denpasar, Bali.

It was reported yesterday that Indonesian police's criminal investigation bureau director of economic and special crimes Agung Setya confirmed the owner of the vessel was not one of the 34 people on board during the raid.

Silitonga said the superyacht was allegedly bought using "dirty money," based on information from the FBI, which had requested assistance from Indonesian authorities on Feb 21.

"Most importantly, in principle, crime should not go unpunished. The law must prevail," he stressed.

Bali district police chief Petrus Golose, meanwhile, said that his team is assisting in guarding the superyacht berthed at the Benoa port.

"We are helping to guard the superyacht because of its huge value, when investigations are ongoing involving authorities from two countries (Indonesia and US)," Golose was quoted as saying by Detiknews.  

In an assets forfeiture suit, the US Department of Justice claimed Low (photo) had commissioned the superyacht to be built for an estimated US$250 million (RM1 billion) using money allegedly misappropriated from 1MDB.

The DOJ believes that at least US$4.5 billion has been misappropriated from 1MDB by Malaysian government officials among others, and is looking to recover approximately US$1.7 billion in assets allegedly acquired in the US using these stolen funds.

The move is part of its anti-kleptocracy operations to seize funds being laundered through the US financial system.

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