IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS DEMANDING BIG PAY-OFFS FOR MINOR BREACHES

EXPATS OPERATING businesses or consulting ..." /> IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS DEMANDING BIG PAY-OFFS FOR MINOR BREACHES

EXPATS OPERATING businesses or consulting ...">
IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS DEMANDING BIG PAY-OFFS FOR MINOR BREACHES

EXPATS OPERATING businesses or consulting services in Batam are being alerted to be aware of a cabal of Immigration officials currently seeking to extort money over trivial or inconsequential technical breaches of Visa rules.
“We seem to be seeing a sudden rash of exploitative ‘errors’,” said corp-orate consultant Gary Dean of Okusi Associates (Jakarta, Batam and Bali).

In one of the most recent cases the officials demanded a US$30,000 pay-off from a Batu Ampar client of Okusi on the basis that it had failed to secure a KITAS (Work Permit) for two senior employees based at the group’s Singapore operation.
Both had been appointed Directors of the Group’s Indonesian subsidiary and routinely travelled to Batam for one or two days for periodic meetings.

Technically anyone appointed Director of an Indonesian company is required to have a KITAS.

Company officers believe a disgruntled employee who had recently been made aware of the technical breach tipped off Immigration officials.

The officials then stopped one of the company Directors as he attempted to depart for Singapore, confiscated his passport, detained him and demanded and received a large sum of money.
Gary Dean has reported details of the case to the Batam Investment Board. Immigration officers are apparently denying that any demands for money ever happened and accusing the complainants of manufacturing false allegations.

In a second case Immigration officers made a “raid” on the office of another company that had recently moved to new premises. The company had applied for and received new Domicile document-ation for the new premises but retained some company documents in the original office.

Technically a company is required to house all company documents in the premises specified as its Domicile.
The officers, presumably acting on a tip-off, discovered this “breach” and demanded money to make this “problem” go away.
No money was paid and Okusi Associates took the matter to Jakarta where it was dismissed as trivial and documents prepared to cover the situation without payment.

Gary Dean is filing a complaint over the actions of the Batam officials with the Anti-Corruption Commission (KPK) in Jakarta.
“Usually the KPK is not interested in any matters involving amounts of less than US$100,000,” Gary said. “However, I will be putting this to them on the basis that this kind of behaviour can put at risk current and potential investments running into many millions of dollars and therefore should be addressed.”

So what to do if you find you, your staff or your company are being targeted?

“The main thing is DON’T PANIC,” said Gary. “Generally the best thing is to effectively do nothing – don’t pay, don’t get angry, don’t admit to anything, don’t sign anything, keep your nerve and be prepared to sit around for a long time in unpleasant circumstances.

“Often Expats relatively new to Indonesia become so outraged in these circumstances that they do not deal with the situation as they should, particularly when they are uncertain about details of the laws and regulations here.

“Make sure you obtain and write down the names and ranks of officials by checking name tags, and listen for and record other names and positions. Ask for letters of authority and copy them. It is impossible to follow up on these matters or seek action without accurate details of the circumstances and the people involved.

“Basically, if you can keep calm and simply demonstrate that you will make extorting you as difficult as possible then eventually they will probably give up.”

Gary said companies being harassed were welcome to contact him at Okusi Associates for advice or to act for them. However, it was essential that they be able to provide all the facts, names, dates and places.

“They should also be aware that we probably cannot achieve an instant result, “Gary said. It will usually take some days before we get anywhere.”


NOTE: In a further issue for the first company referred to above, an employee (also son of the local manager) was accused of working illegally and the company was reporteldy required to pay US$8,000 but he was deported anyway. The interesting elelemnt of this is that the son was the only witness to an incident that led to his father being locked up on a charge of assault – the father was subsequently released following the intervention of the US Consul-General from Medan.
<span style="font-size: 14pt"><span style="font-weight: bold">IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS DEMANDING BIG PAY-OFFS FOR MINOR BREACHES</span></span><br /> <br /> EXPATS OPERATING businesses or consulting services in Batam are being alerted to be aware of a cabal of Immigration officials currently seeking to extort money over trivial or inconsequential technical breaches of Visa rules.<br /> &ldquo;We seem to be seeing a sudden rash of exploitative &lsquo;errors&rsquo;,&rdquo; said corp-orate consultant Gary Dean of Okusi Associates (Jakarta, Batam and Bali).<br /> <br /> In one of the most recent cases the officials demanded a US$30,000 pay-off from a Batu Ampar client of Okusi on the basis that it had failed to secure a KITAS (Work Permit) for two senior employees based at the group&rsquo;s Singapore operation.<br /> Both had been appointed Directors of the Group&rsquo;s Indonesian subsidiary and routinely travelled to Batam for one or two days for periodic meetings.<br /> <br /> Technically anyone appointed Director of an Indonesian company is required to have a KITAS.<br /> <br /> Company officers believe a disgruntled employee who had recently been made aware of the technical breach tipped off Immigration officials.<br /> <br /> The officials then stopped one of the company Directors as he attempted to depart for Singapore, confiscated his passport, detained him and demanded and received a large sum of money.<br /> Gary Dean has reported details of the case to the Batam Investment Board. Immigration officers are apparently denying that any demands for money ever happened and accusing the complainants of manufacturing false allegations.<br /> <br /> In a second case Immigration officers made a &ldquo;raid&rdquo; on the office of another company that had recently moved to new premises. The company had applied for and received new Domicile document-ation for the new premises but retained some company documents in the original office.<br /> <br /> Technically a company is required to house all company documents in the premises specified as its Domicile.<br /> The officers, presumably acting on a tip-off, discovered this &ldquo;breach&rdquo; and demanded money to make this &ldquo;problem&rdquo; go away.<br /> No money was paid and Okusi Associates took the matter to Jakarta where it was dismissed as trivial and documents prepared to cover the situation without payment.<br /> <br /> Gary Dean is filing a complaint over the actions of the Batam officials with the Anti-Corruption Commission (KPK) in Jakarta.<br /> &ldquo;Usually the KPK is not interested in any matters involving amounts of less than US$100,000,&rdquo; Gary said. &ldquo;However, I will be putting this to them on the basis that this kind of behaviour can put at risk current and potential investments running into many millions of dollars and therefore should be addressed.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> So what to do if you find you, your staff or your company are being targeted?<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The main thing is DON&rsquo;T PANIC,&rdquo; said Gary. &ldquo;Generally the best thing is to effectively do nothing &ndash; don&rsquo;t pay, don&rsquo;t get angry, don&rsquo;t admit to anything, don&rsquo;t sign anything, keep your nerve and be prepared to sit around for a long time in unpleasant circumstances.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Often Expats relatively new to Indonesia become so outraged in these circumstances that they do not deal with the situation as they should, particularly when they are uncertain about details of the laws and regulations here.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Make sure you obtain and write down the names and ranks of officials by checking name tags, and listen for and record other names and positions. Ask for letters of authority and copy them. It is impossible to follow up on these matters or seek action without accurate details of the circumstances and the people involved.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Basically, if you can keep calm and simply demonstrate that you will make extorting you as difficult as possible then eventually they will probably give up.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> Gary said companies being harassed were welcome to contact him at Okusi Associates for advice or to act for them. However, it was essential that they be able to provide all the facts, names, dates and places.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;They should also be aware that we probably cannot achieve an instant result, &ldquo;Gary said. It will usually take some days before we get anywhere.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> <br /> NOTE: In a further issue for the first company referred to above, an employee (also son of the local manager) was accused of working illegally and the company was reporteldy required to pay US$8,000 but he was deported anyway. The interesting elelemnt of this is that the son was the only witness to an incident that led to his father being locked up on a charge of assault &ndash; the father was subsequently released following the intervention of the US Consul-General from Medan.
KuKuKaChu: dangerously too sophisticated
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