Indonesia and Swiss Confederation Sign MLA Agreement
Date 5 Februari 2019
Minister of Law and Human Rights Yasonna H. Laoly signed a Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) agreement between the Republic of Indonesia and the Swiss Confederation at Bernerhof Bern, on Monday (4/2).
The Indonesia-Swiss Confederation MLA agreement is the 10th MLA agreement signed by the Government of Indonesia (after the MLA agreement with the ASEAN, Australia, Hong Kong, China, South Korea, India, Vietnam, UAE and Iran), while for Swiss Confederation it is the 14th MLA agreement with non-European countries.
The MLA agreement is a remarkable achievement of criminal reciprocal assistance, and is a very important diplomatic achievement, considering that Switzerland is the largest financial center in Europe.
The signing of the MLA agreement is in line with the Nawacita program, and with President Jokowi’s instruction on various occasions, including on the commemoration of the World Anti-Corruption Day in 2018 where the President stressed the importance of the MLA as a legal cooperation platform, especially in the Government’s efforts in corruption eradication and asset recovery.
The MLA agreement consists of 39 articles, which regulate legal assistance regarding tracking, freezing, confiscation and seizure of assets resulting from crime.
The wide range of criminal reciprocal assistance is an important part in the framework of supporting the criminal justice process in the requesting country.
The MLA agreement can be used to combat tax fraud in order to ensure that Indonesian citizens or legal entities comply with Indonesian tax regulations and do not commit tax evasion or other tax crimes.
Under Indonesia’s proposal, the signed agreement adheres to the retroactive principle. This principle makes it possible to reach criminal acts that have been committed before the agreement signed, as long as the court decision has not been enforced.
The Indonesia-Swiss Confederation MLA agreement is completed through two-round negotiation, the first one was in 2015 in Bali and the second one was in 2017 in Bern.
On the occasion, Yasonna expressed his highest gratitude and appreciation to the Swiss Government for helping and facilitating the MLA Agreement. He also expressed hope that the House of Representatives (DPR) will soon ratify the agreement.
Yasonna also expressed his gratitude for the full support from Ambassador Muliaman Hadad as well as Ambassador Linggawaty Hakim and from other state institutions. (Biro Humas, Hukum dan Kerja sama Kemenkumham/EN)
Translated by: Ridwan Ibadurrohman
Edited by: Mia Medyana