Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Ministry of Environment and Forestry (KLHK) and Indonesian Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (PPATK) have formed a joint team to investigate money laundering crimes (TPPU).

Director General of Environmental and Forestry Law Enforcement of KLHK, Rasio Ridho Sani, underscored the importance of forming a joint team to create a deterrent effect on the perpetrators of environmental and forestry crimes.

"This step is important for us to take, considering that the impact of environmental and forestry crimes is enormous," he noted during a press conference at the office of PPATK in Jakarta on Monday.

The TPPU Joint Team is formed in keeping with the implementation of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between PPATK and KLHK in 2019.

The TPPU Joint Team is formed based on Article 46 of Presidential Regulation No. 50 of 2011 on Procedures for the Implementation of the Authority of the Center for Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis, which explains that a joint team can be formed comprising predicate crime investigators and PPATK.

Legal Aid Investigators of the KLHK investigate allegations of money laundering originating from environmental and forestry crimes. This is the first step in proving that the proceeds of these crimes were concealed through the money laundering process.

Sani revealed that environmental and forestry crimes tend to be correlated with money laundering.

The TPPU Joint Team has duties and responsibilities that encompass formulating and implementing a strategy for handling alleged money laundering from environmental and forestry crimes, including tracing and recovering assets from reports on analysis results and inspection results submitted by PPATK.

The joint team also carries out formal and informal cooperation with counterparts from other countries to optimize the handling of alleged money laundering crimes from environmental and forestry crimes.

Collaboration and consolidation with other countries to trace money laundering assets are crucial, as the development of environmental and forestry crimes had become part of transnational organized crimes that involved the use of technology to commit them.

Currently, Indonesia, through the PPATK, is also undergoing a mutual evaluation review by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) under the framework of Indonesia's full membership in the FATF.

Indonesia's inclusion as a full member of the FATF will have a positive impact on the credibility of the country's economy, increasing positive perceptions of the Indonesian financial system and compliance with the Indonesian financial services sector in accordance with the FATF international standards.

The increased positive perception will impact rapid economic growth through both domestic and foreign investments.

Chairman of the National Coordinating Committee for the Prevention and Eradication of Money Laundering, Mahfud MD, affirmed that his side had recently held a committee meeting on money laundering crimes.

The meeting was attended by 13 ministries and agencies that are members of TPPU, in addition to several ministries and other institutions that have relations with TPPU.

"Especially at this time, I would like to announce that earlier, it was agreed to form a Task Force for money laundering crimes in the environmental and forestry sector," said Mahfud, who is also Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs.

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Translator: Cindy Frishanti Octavia
Editor: Anton Santoso
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