The Attorney General’s Office on Friday asked for help from Interpol to capture convicted embezzler Djoko Tjandra, who is believed to be hiding in Singapore, after he ignored a final summons to turn himself in to serve a two-year jail sentence.
“We officially requested the National Police send a ‘red notice’ to Interpol to enlist their help in capturing Djoko,” AGO spokesman Jasman Panjaitan said. “At the same time, prosecutors are also working closely with related state agencies, like the embassy in Singapore and the immigration office, for the speedy capture of the convicted man.”
His remarks came minutes after the 5:00 p.m. deadline for Djoko passed without his arrival at the South Jakarta prosecutors’ office.
Jasman said Djoko, who was convicted of embezzling central bank funds in 1999, responded to three AGO summonses with letters asking for a postponement of his sentence.
Earlier on Friday, a senior prosecutor said Djoko had stated in his last letter that he needed a delay because he was “still shocked” at the June 11 Supreme Court verdict.
“He is now in Singapore. We cannot just go there and arrest him,” said Marwan Effendy, deputy attorney general for special crimes.
The governments of Indonesia and Singapore have signed an extradition treaty but it has not yet come into force as the House of Representatives has refused to ratify it.
Marwan previously said Djoko asked for time to settle some business affairs in Papua New Guinea, and on another occasion, he said Djoko was in Singapore to take care of his ill father, but the prosecutor appeared tetchy when asked about the convict’s constant excuses.
“If you want to know the real reason why he is running, go to Singapore and ask him yourself,” he told journalists.
Jakarta has often criticized Singapore for acting as a safe haven for convicted Indonesian businessmen who flee after being convicted of stealing state asset s.
Among more than a dozen fugitives believed to be in Singapore are Agus Anwar, Bambang Sutrisno, Sudjiono Timan and Samadikun Hartono, all of whom are wanted for embezzling central bank funds.
Any effort to bring them back to Indonesia has been unsuccessful so far.
The extradition treaty was signed in April 2007 but the House, under mounting media pressure, shelved the treaty because Singapore wanted to use an area in Sumatra for military exercises in exchange.
Djoko was convicted alongside former central bank Governor Sjahirl Sabirin, who approved the disbursement of the Rp 905 billion ($50 million) fund to repay debts in Bank Bali.