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OIC urged to freeze sale of Lilybank Lodge


10 December, 2000

MEDIA RELEASE: Overseas Investment Commission urged to freeze sale of Lilybank Lodge because of Suharto links.

The Indonesia Human Rights Committee is urging the Overseas Investment Commission and the Minister of Foreign Affairs to hold off on approval of a proposed sale to "United States interests" of the South Island Lilybank Lodge - since 1992 a hideaway for the playboy son of Indonesia's former dictator. Tommy Suharto is right now a fugitive from justice having been convicted and sentenced to jail for corruption charges, and at least two of his plush Jakarta homes have been seized.

" We owe it to the Indonesian people to ensure that this sale is not going to let a criminal benefit from the proceeds of crime. There is good reason to suspect that Tommy Suharto is still the real owner of Lilybank despite a questionable sale last year. "

" Tommy "sold" it to his close business partner Alan Poh for the sum of $1-00, but the New Zealand Company records still show Tommy Suharto as owning 95% of the shares of the Lilybank holding company, Buckcorp."

"The OIC must not approve any further sale while there is a major doubt about the extent of Tommy Suharto's real interest in the property."

" The Indonesian Attorney General, Mr Marzuki Darusman, has already seized two of Tommy Suharto's luxury homes (and announced an intention to seize 22 more properties) to hold as collateral against the compensation he has been ordered to pay by the Supreme Court, for a US$11 million land scam."

" Mr Darusman has signalled his interest in Suharto family assets in New Zealand in discussions with Foreign Affairs Minister Phil Goff and with free trade campaigner Aziz Choudry. "

"The sale of Lilybank should be frozen to give opportunity for the Indonesian government to formally request its seizure as a property required for compensation to the people who have suffered as the result of Tommy Suharto's corrupt dealings."

"The Suharto family has enriched itself at the expense of the Indonesian state and the Indonesian people, to the scale of $US15 billion (sic) according to "Time Magazine." New Zealand must do everything possible to repatriate assets held here."

"We have a "Proceeds of Crime Act". It should surely apply to those who have stolen so massively from an entire country."

for further information: Maire Leadbeater 09-376-9098 or cell 025-436-957 .


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