InfoSAWIT, JAKARTA – After more than two years developing and accompanying the smallholders in Dusun Semaram, Village of Sekayan, Sub district of Kemuning, District of Indragiri Hilir, Riau Province, Soaduon Sitorus, and environment activist was threatened, put in trial within robbery case, put in jail but now he is a free man.
It started from the area conflict between the local stakeholders and the smallholders in the region in April 2017. The smallholders begged for Soaduon Edo Sitorus to accompany them. But as the time went by, advocacy turned to be a pressure, be caught and arrested in jail.
Soaduon Edo Sitorus, S is an activist who fights for the smallholders’ rights in the village. He was put in jail after being arrested on 12 December 2019 after accompanying and helping the palm oil harvest belonging to the smallholders. Since 14 December 2019, he was the suspect and put in jail by Riau Police by accusing that he stole the palm oil belonging to GN.
Sitorus thought that what happened should not happen in the context of law enforcement in this country. The report police by GN since in the early of May 2017 mentioned that the smallholders had stolen, published the face documents, and stolen the areas. Those were not hard, complex, and complicated cases because the relationship with area and plantations on the areas is rights of ownership which needs empiric evidence in the form of documents or de facto that the truth should be revealed in the field. But after years, the report police was in process and it seemed to be complicated after the awkwardness went on and on.
On 18 June 2019, Soaduon Sitorus, the people, other sides and Riau Police witnessed the test result of Compensation Documents in the field. The facts revealed that 12 Compensation Documents as the legal rights belonging to the complainant are not on the smallholders’ areas where the complainant claimed as his.
Sitorus continued that besides mismatching Compensation Documents of the smallholders’s areas that GN wants to take, the planting system, the ways, and ages of trees of the smallholders’ are significantly different from the complainant’s plantations which directly border to the smallholders’ areas. GN should actually revoked his report at the time since knowing the mis-positions of the areas in the Compensation Documents.
But on 16 October 2019, the investigators of Riau Police and the complainant put sign on the smallholders’ plantations that forbids do activity and harvest on the smallholders’ areas that GN took on trial. It seems that the complainant insisted to admit to the officers that the areas really belong to him. Since the sign was put, the complainant monitored when the smallholders harvested and reported Soaduon Sitorus as the thief until the investigators of Riau Police took and arrested him.
“The sign should actually be put on the areas within complete and legal documents of GN, such as, the Documents of Ownership published by National Land Agency,” Soaduon Edo Sitorus said, as in the official written statement to InfoSAWIT, Wednesday (17/6/2020).
The advocate of Soaduon Edo Sitorus mentioned that the claim to Soaduon Edo Sitorus is unreasonable. The real facts had been proved in the trial.
“The advocate team and the defendant have told pledoi in the trial on 9 June 2020. The bottom line is that we have objection from the prosecutor and begged to the Court so that Soaduon Sitorus free from every charge and rejected the claims from the prosecutors,” the advocate of Soaduon Sitorus mentioned.
But the prosecutors did not pay attention to the pledoi that was read in the trial. They wanted to sue the defendant. “We do hope within your wisdom to sentence as fair as it could to our client. Everything is clear from the check of evidences during the trial ran,” the advocate of Soaduon Sitorus said.
After the trial, the sentence red on 16 June 2020, Soaduon Sitorus is now a free man. “The sentence of the court is the victory on the truth and justice for the smallholders whom Soaduon Sitorus accompanied and developed for all these years,” the advocate ended. (T2)