Indonesia’s anti-corruption agency detained Emirsyah Satar, former head of Garuda Indonesia, as part of a long-running investigation into suspected corruption involving the procurement of aircraft and plane engines.
Satar is suspected of violating money-laundering law and will be detained for 20 days, the agency known as KPK said in a statement. The agency also detained an Indonesian businessman for the same suspected violation.
Satar was given cash and other gifts by the detained Indonesian businessman, who received commissions from manufacturers, the agency alleged. While admitting that he received money from the businessman, Satar denies any money-laundering allegations as he thought the money was merely a form of gratitude, his lawyer Luhut Pangaribuan said.
“After the investigation started, he realized that as a state employee he should not have received anything, so he returned the money,” Pangaribuan said in a text message.
The probe relates to Garuda purchases when Satar was head of the state-owned airline, according to KPK, short for Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi. Satar has been credited by analysts for helping to revive the carrier when running it as CEO and president director from 2005 through 2014.
KPK said it has confiscated a house in Jakarta while authorities in Singapore seized an apartment and blocked various bank accounts of Satar in the citystate. The Indonesian agency also suspects the involvement of several foreign manufacturers in the case and said it is open to cooperation with various authorities abroad.
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