Indonesian graft fugitive granted expat status in M’sia on PNG passport
Alyaa AlhadjriPublished 7:52 amModified 7:52 am
Indonesia’s most wanted graft fugitive, Djoko Tjandra, is believed to have been residing in Malaysia as an expatriate on a Papua New Guinea passport issued under the name of “Joe Chan”.
Malaysiakini sighted a copy of the passport with an employment pass issued by Malaysia’s Immigration Department under Category 1, which includes individuals hired for key positions in a company.
According to details on the employment pass, Chan was hired as operations and development director by Mulia Property Development Sdn Bhd.
It further states that the employment pass was issued by the Immigration Department headquarters in Putrajaya on Sept 20, 2019, and remains valid for three years until Sept 20, 2022.
A check on the Immigration Department’s Expatriate Services Division website confirmed that the company had submitted all necessary documents on Sept 11 last year and their application was endorsed, indicating a successful hire for the individual using the Papua New Guinea passport.
The company involved in the construction of 1MDB’s Signature Tower in the Tun Razak Exchange (TRX) is the local subsidiary for Indonesian property developer Mulia Group, controlled by Djoko’s brother Eka Tjandranegara as its president-director and owner.
It was discovered that Djoko, who first fled Indonesia in 2009 to escape from serving a graft conviction, had succeeded in removing himself from Interpol’s red notice list while living in exile.
Following public outcry, he was once again declared as a wanted man by Indonesian authorities on June 27, about a month prior to his arrest.
Since then, Indonesian tycoon Tommy Sumardi, an in-law of former Malaysian prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, has been accused of bribing two senior police generals to facilitate the removal of Djoko’s Interpol red notice and assist his travels.
The police generals were later removed from their positions for allegedly accepting the bribe.
Djoko’s alleged connections in Malaysia were previously raised by Indonesia’s former attorney-general, HM Prasetyo, who claimed that the then Malaysian attorney-general, Apandi Ali, had in 2016 made a personal request for him to consider dropping the 68-year-old tycoon’s conviction and allowing him to return as a free man.
Malaysiakini has contacted Mulia Property Development for comment.