Andika Revealed the Untold Story about First Travel's Assets

Oleh: Reja Hidayat - 18 September 2018
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Through the 1,318-pages of verdict document and crossing-over dozens of sources, Tirto traced back where the assets have flown.
tirto.id - “Umar lied to me, my business partner in London lied to me too.”

Andika Surachman, the CEO of First Anugerah Karya Wisata (First Travel), said the statement from behind bars of Depok Prison—a penitentiary housing which located about one hour by car from central Jakarta. He was sentenced to 20 years in jail due to money laundering and defrauding dozens of thousands of people wanting to go on pilgrimage to Mecca.

Umar who was mentioned in that statement is Umar Abdul Aziz or Umar Bakadam. He is an Indonesian businessman of Arab descent and the owner of Kanomas Arci Wisata, a Muslim pilgrimage travel agency.

According to the Directorate General of Public Law Administration’s (Ditjen AHU), Kanomas was incorporated in February 2006 with the initial amount of investment of Rp880 million.

On December 5, 2013, Umar established PT. Dream Tours & Travel with Kanomas as a parent company. His son Halid Umar Bakadam sitting as the CEO of the new company. In addition to having created Safina Dania Wisata, another faith-based travel agency, Umar also runs a restaurant. (Umar is a well-known businessman; he once shook hands President Yudhoyono and President Joko Widodo.)

Andika stated that one of his many business partnerships with Umar was made when Umar promised him 5,000 pilgrimage tickets for First Travel. In return, Andika was obliged to hand over certificates of First Travel’s office building in Depok as well as of his own Sentul City house as a warranty.

However, he added, after transferring both certificates in 2017, Umar kept delaying to send the tickets. Umar, he said, had once again promised him to provide the tickets only if Andika met the requirement to confer the title ownership of both certificates to Umar.

On August 8, 2017, Andika Surachman and his wife, Anniesa Hasibuan, were arrested by the National Police Criminal Investigation Agency (Bareskrim Polri). As the promise was never delivered, so did the tickets.

“It’s too late. The certificate ownership has already been transferred,” Andika told Tirto.

The certificate transfer, as he recalled, took place between April and May 2017 in Anniesa Hasibuan’s South Jakarta boutique and was attended by a notary appointed by Umar and his son Halid Umar, Andika, Anniesa, and bank representative.

Both parties accepted that the Sentul City house and First Travel’s building would still be under Andika’s ownership. The initial reason behind the transfer was that Umar wanted to apply for a bank loan. Because Andika was blacklisted by banks, so Umar managed to convince the other party that the transfer was a mere formal loan procedure to ease the entire process.

Umar promised him to confer the formal letter describing the asset handover once they were done with certificate transfer. “He never gave them to us,” Andika's claim.

Representing Umar Bakadam, Kanomas Group’s attorney Husni Farid Abdat denied Andika’s allegation about Kanomas’s pledge to send 5,000 tickets to First Travel. Abdat says that 14,041 tickets as issued to First Travel in three subsequent phases between November 2016 to June 2017.

“If his assumption were right, why on earth was he willing to pledge his own properties as a tool for payment? In other words, he was aware of himself having such a big debt to us since we had already sent the tickets,” Abdat said to Tirto at HFA Lawyers office on 7 September 2018. (Tirto had visited Kanomas office, where Umar has often been seen. We came to his house in West Jakarta and tried to reach him by phone five times. However, Umar refused to meet Tirto.)

Abdat claimed that Andika’s testimony was a “one-sided statement.”

“I’m telling you a simple fact. Did [Andika] denies Umar’s testimony during the trial? No, he never did,” says Abdat. (Andika told Tirto that he did not deny any testimony delivered against him during the trial while at the same time he was granted the opportunity to refute them at the Depok District Court).


The mysterious “shares swap” in London

Staying in police custody didn’t prevent Andika from attempting to salvage his one asset from investigators, namely, a London-based restaurant called Nusa Dua. The restaurant has been run by permanent residents Usya Soemiarti Soeharjono and her husband, Firdaus Ahmad.

Andika had transferred a sum of Rp24 billion to Usya, an amount of which included Rp12 billion for the restaurant and allegedly came from First Travel’s costumers. In exchange, Andika secured one apartment unit worth Rp2 billion. The unit, located in South Jakarta, previously belong to Usya.

Andika said to the investigators that the London restaurant was not his asset, indicating that there was "a swapping process" with Usya’s apartment even though it is not supported with a bounding agreement letter.

“The measure was initially taken to keep the asset intact,” Andika told Tirto. Nonetheless, he was crushed by his desperate attempt.

According to 1,318-page court verdict against the Andika dan Anniesa, Usya wrote a "statement letter" to grant the business rights of the Nusa Dua restaurant to Heri Jerman and Dwi Irianto on November 30, 2017.

Heri Jerman, then one of the general criminal coordinators from the Office of Attorney General, served as the head of prosecutors during the court. Dwi Irianto, on the other hand, led the Bareskrim Polri investigation team.

As we found out later, the Nusa Dua ownership was switched to Nusa Rasa Ltd., on February 12, 2018, bearing the name of Yan Rizal Zainuddin, the restaurant’s chef.

“I don’t know anything,” said Yan Rizal when Tirto visited Nusa Dua in London. The business, he said, belongs to Usya Soemiarti.

In her testimony at Depok District Court, Usya stated that Nusa Dua's shares which were owned by Andika had been "swapped" since she gave her apartment unit in South Jakarta in March 2017.

Later on, 7 May 2018, as requested by the prosecutors, Nusa Dua came to be included on the list of confiscated assets. As a result, the state had practically "seized" the asset, according to verdict document issued by the Depok District Court.

Rivai Arvan, one of the Bareskrim investigators and is currently the regional Police Chief of Mamuju, South Sulawesi, claimed to have “confiscated” the apartment. Things got more perplexing when Usya’s apartment was taken over by Umar Bakadam.

Andika told Tirto that his asset in London has been “safeguarded at the Bareskrim” but at the end of the day, he “didn’t get anything from them.” (Until we release this report, Nusa Dua Restaurant still operates despite confiscation.)


What about the lawyer?

It was from behind bars that Andika Surachman told Tirto that parts of his assets were now held by Dewi Muchtar, a lawyer hired by First Travel customers who also the creditors. Representing them, Dewi launched a lawsuit in Central Jakarta’s Commercial Court, demanding First Travel to file for bankruptcy or debt postponement (Penundaan Kewajiban Pembayaran Utang).

Andika told Tirto that he met Dewi who in turn asked him to make a formal request addressed to First Travel customers to pay Dewi as much as Rp200,000 to file bankruptcy. (Tirto has received a copy of similar request through WhatsApp message.)

As written in the agreement, the registration fee would be divided equally to Dewi and Andika. Andika complied to Dewi, telling her that he “was strapped for cash”. He believed that the request might gather more than 7,000 First Travel customers.

“But until the verdict was issued, she [Dewi] never kept her promise [gave me the money],” says Andika.

When Tirto reached her out, Dewi Muchtar denied all Andika’s accusations. She claimed that she knew nothing about the assets, saying “I don’t know” and “there is no such thing” over and over.

She went further as to threaten Tirto: “Should you cite my name [in the article], even after I said this statement, I won’t hesitate to call the police … using the article 27 of the Electronic Information and Transactions Law—the defamation article.”

“I know nothing of it. Never call me again,” she cries. “Please, don’t disturb me.”

She claimed to have never seen Andika Surachman and Anniesa Hasibuan during the postponement period. (Dewi’s claim contradicts a photo received by Tirto. On April 13, 2018, 09.46 local time, Dewi and nine First Travel customers were seen visiting Class II B Prison Cilodong, Depok, where Andika and Anniesa were arrested).

Movable assets illegally moved?

According to Umar Bakadam, Andika’s immovable asset—including a house in Sentul and First Travel office in Depok—could never cover Andika’s overall debt whose amount is claimed to reach Rp90 billion.

After the arrest by Bareskrim Polri to file the police investigation report, Andika told Tirto that Umar showed up and asked Andika to sign “several blank receipts with stamps” he came up with.

“I felt so depressed, so I signed the receipts,” said Andika. “Turns out the receipts were used to buy and sell some cars. They were supposed to be my pledge to Umar.”

The transfer of the movable assets to Umar was reported to Deski, Andika’s lawyer. Deski said Andika told him about it after he signed the receipts.

“I told Bapak (Andika) that he was still under Bareksrim investigation,” he said. “If Bapak moves the assets, the penalties would be increased.”

“[Investigators] would accuse you of embezzlement of evidence,” said Deski upon meeting with Tirto at North Jakarta District Court on August 2018.

Deski also said, Umar had met Andika to close the deal on the asset transfer, and it took place “around the first month after Andika’s arrest”, between August and September 2017.

Referring to Andika’s verdict documents, the judges eventually returned cars owned by Andika, Anniesa Hasibuan and Siti "Kiki" Nuraida Hasibuan (Aniessa sister) to Umar Bakadam.

Three out of five cars on the list are registered under Andika’s name: the 2013 Mitsubishi Pajero Sport 2.5 (with a license plate numbered F 111 PT); the 2014 Volkswagen Caravelle 2.0 (F 805 FT); and the 2009 Hummer H2 62 SUV AT (F 1051 GT).

One unit of 2016 Toyota Velfire 26 2.4 (F 777 NA) is registered under Anniesa’s name, and one another is the 2015 Toyota Fortuner 2.5 G AT (B 28 KHS) reportedly belong to Kiki.

However, according to Umar Bakadam’s court testimony, Andika himself gave the cars as a form of assurance on March 17, 2017. He said that the cars’ documents had yet been transferred to him, but there were sale receipts before Andika’s arrest.

Deski denied Umar’s testimony as noted in the verdict document's when we reached him.

“The couple’s family members are still using the same cars. How could he even claim that they were sold off? Give me a break. Let’s say you buy a car, you take it, not borrow it,” said Deski.

Oddly enough, the Mercedes-Benz E25 Cabriolet (license numbered F 9 NA) registered under Anniessa Hasibuan’s name has now been held by Umar.

Initially, Andika said, the Mercedes was on Andika’s asset list as written in the police investigation report. However, investigators asked him to sign the annulment of evidence to put the car out of the list. He initially refused as he was afraid that “his assets will be gone again.”

Andika said, Police Commissioner Wiranto, one of the Bareskrim investigation unit working on First Travel affair, had called him by phone and managed to convince him that the car would stay intact. At the end of the day, Andika was “forced” to sign the annulment statement.

And his concern proved right as the white Mercedez he bought in 2015 was “now being held by Umar’s nephew”.

Tirto reached Wiranto to confirm whether Andika’s accusation was true. Wiranto denied it.

“If you don’t believe it, you can ask Pak Erianto,” said Wiranto to Tirto at the Bareskrim office on September 3, 2018. Police Commissioner Erianto was part of the First Travel investigation team.

Husni Farid Abdat, Umar Bakadam’s lawyer, confirmed that the Mercedez-Benz was now being held by his clients, along with five other cars. However, he added, the car transfer was committed “by the law.”

The cars were made purchasing guarantee for the tickets issued by Bakadam’s Kanomas. The Mercedes in particular, said Abdat, was transferred “long before the other five cars” and has now been used as a guarantee.

“The receipts were being used as the basis of the [asset] transfer from First Travel to Kanomas. The cars were registered as personal items, not as company assets. So, they never belong to First Travel. And the First Travel bosses transferred them to Kanomas,” Abdat told Tirto.

Abdat’s statement was contradictory to Umar’s court testimony. Referring to Depok District Court verdict, Umar said that the cars, along with the Peak Residence unit and the certificate of the house located at Jl. RTM Raya Citra Pesona Residence Cluster, were all part of the pledge as testified by Andika’s statement on March 17, 2017.

Tirto went to the police traffic unit to cross-check Mercedes’s plate number, and it turned out that no cars were ever registered as F 9 NA. That was to say; the Mercedes never exists legally. On the other hand, the Rp1 billion car was once seen in Mampang, South Jakarta, heading to Villa Pejaten Mas on 19 August 2018, at 21.47 local time. (Tirto has the picture).

The massive amount of property and assets lost in transfer had driven Andika mad. Meanwhile, around 63,310 First Travel customers had to cancel their pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

On May 30, 2018, Chief Judge Sobandi, Judges Teguh Arfiano and Yulida Trimurti Asih Muryati sentenced Andika and Anniesa to 20 years and 18 years in prison respectively.

Speaking from his cell in Depok jailhouse, Andika claimed to Tirto that he was to be “victim” of “fraud” committed by those taking advantage of his falling from grace.

“I was promised that [some people] would help me in the trial—on one condition that I would never expose their dirty secrets in the court,” Andika lamented.

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This report is a translation of an Indonesian article entitled, “Dari Penjara, Andika Surachman Buka-bukaan soal Aset First Travel”. Adhi Bhaskara translated this report, Windu Jusuf vetted the translation, Irma Garnesia and Wan Ulfa Nur Zuhra helped with proofreading.

There are two other reports in the English translation: one about Nusa Dua restaurant in London; another report about billions of rupiah belonging to umrah pilgrims who “disappeared” and were not tracked by police investigators.

We considering that the First Travel case is one of the biggest money laundering cases by an umrah travel company that draws attention from foreign media outlets.

Baca juga artikel terkait FIRST TRAVEL atau tulisan menarik lainnya Reja Hidayat
(tirto.id - Indepth)

Reporter: Wan Ulfa Nur Zuhra, Andrian Pratama Taher, Reja Hidayat & Felix Nathaniel
Penulis: Reja Hidayat
Editor: Fahri Salam
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