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Fathanah, Lutfi Mention Minister Suswono in Court
Sunday, 19 May, 2013 | 13:12 WIB
Fathanah, Lutfi Mention Minister Suswono in Court

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The role of Lutfi Hasan Ishaaq and Ahmad Fathanah in pushing Minister of Agriculture Suswono to approve the additional quota of imported beef to PT Indoguna Utama is becoming clear. The conspiracy of the two was revealed during the court trial of Indoguna's directors, Arya Abdi Effendy and Juard Effendy.

In his testimony at the Corruption Criminal Court (Tipikor) on Friday, May 12, Suswono said that Lutfi facilitated a meeting at Aryaduta Hotel, Medan on January 11 this year. In the meeting, Suswono was introduced to the Indoguna Utama director Maria Elizabeth Liman.

Lutfi and Fathanah was proven to be the active agents in arranging the additional import quota to PT Indoguna, as revealed on a taped phone conversation between the two that was published during the trial. The conversation occurred on January 9 and was spoken partly in Arabic.  

Lutfi told Fathanah to ask Elizabeth to come along and be introduced to Suswono. He also advised Fathanah to ask Elizabeth to bring some statistical data on imported beef demand. "She (Elizabeth) must be able to convince the Minister that the data from the Center of Statistical Bureau is not true and its self-suffiency is threatening our meat resistancy," said Lutfi.

The initial involvement of the two in this imported beef graft case was revealed in the prosecutor’s indictment of Anti-Graft Commission (KPK) towards Arya and Juard. According to the prosecutor, Elizabeth requested Lutfi's and Fathanah’s help since her proposal of additional quota kept being rejected.   

The imported beef graft case was rolling after KPK investigators arrested Fathanah at Le Meridien hotel Jakarta on January 29 this year, together with Rp1 billion cash. The money was suspected to be the bribery for Lutfi from PT. Indoguna Utama. After Fathanah was arrested, Arya, Juard, Luthfi, and Elizabeth were following.