August 26, 2018

MoEF declares Laman Mining as a corporate suspect

( - The Indonesian Ministry of the Environment and Forestry has declared PT Laman Mining a corporate suspect after the company was caught red-handed mining bauxite illegally in state forest areas. 

This unprecedented law enforcement action was carried out under instruction from Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya and reflects the continuing improved environmental and peat governance efforts in the era of President Joko Widodo.

The illegal bauxite mining operations in question took place in part of a peat ecosystem lying in West Kalimantan's Ketapang regency which acts as a buffer zone for the Gunung Palung National Park and is also inhabited by the critically-endangered Bornean orangutan

The bauxite mining company mined the state forest areas using 7 excavators (Aug 20), all of which were seized and are being held by a ministry law enforcement team.

“Yes, I have received a report from my Law Enforcement Director General stating that PT Laman Mining has been announced as a corporate suspect. There is enough hard evidence for the company to be declared as such," Minister Nurbaya explained in a written response to (Aug 25). 

“I have been observing this case closely since May (this year), to the point where the decision was made to undertake this law enforcement action,” she added. 

The following photos highlight the law enforcement operations undertaken on-site by the ministry’s law enforcement team in the Sungai Putri-Gunung Palung landscape.

The Environment and Forestry Minister emphasized that the level of destruction caused by the illegal bauxite mining operations is very serious indeed, encompassing a broad spectrum of destructive practices which involve part of the peat ecosystem

The photos below depict the extent of the destruction mentioned by the minister as a result of the illegal bauxite mining in the peat ecosystem which is a habitat of the Bornean orangutan. 

An extraordinary crime

In the meantime, the Ministry's Law Enforcement Director General Rasio "Roy" Ridho Sani asserted that the illegal bauxite mining involving state forest areas carried out by PT Laman Mining constitutes an extraordinary crime.

“Our minister has instructed us to take very firm action. We suspect that the company’s commissioners and directors are the intellectual actors behind the illegal mining uncovered,” Roy added.

The ministry’s law enforcement team stated that the perpetrators of the illegal mining face the threat of imprisonment for at least 8 years and at most 20 years.

“The illegal mining done by this company has not only caused state losses, but has also destroyed the ecosystem, a key wildlife habitat, as well as the livelihood of the local community. The actors (responsible for the illegal mining) should be punished as severely as possible,” the director general stressed