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Dewanto Kurniawan, Director of PT Pondok Kalimaya Putih (PT PKP), on Wednesday was tried in the Serang District Court of Banten for allegedly damaging the environment in Sangiang Island to the detriment of the state because his actions have resulted in the loss of biosphere reserves in the natural forest.
"Based on the results of a research team of experts from the Ministry of Environment and Faculty of Forestry IPB and reports of several NGOs with accurate data, the defendant has violated Law No. 5/1990 on natural resources and Law no 23/1997 on environmental management, and the environmental damage caused by the defendant's actions is very severe, "Prosecutor Asnawi SH said when reading the indictment.
In the hearing chaired by the Chairman of the Board of Judges, Husni Rizal, he explained that the environmental destruction carried out by the suspect stems from a concession of the Minister of Forestry granting location permits to PT PKP for 30 years through SK Dirjen Kehindung Hutan dan Kehestarian Alam (PHPA) No 65 / kpts / DJ-III / 93 on June 7, 1992 for the purposes of tourism.
Armed with the suspect's permission then built various tourist facilities such as hotels, piers, resorts and restaurants starting in 1993.
However, all of the island's development process by PT PKP was halted due to the economic crisis in 1998 and PT PKP led by the defendant let the island be damaged and abandoned and left it just like that in a ravaged condition.
Environmental destruction on Sangiang Island based on the investigation result of expert witness from Faculty of Forestry IPB occurred in an area of ??about 448.93 hectares.
The action of PT PKP to develop tourism area without considering environmental aspect causes the change of natural landscape in Sangiang Nature Park Nature Park area from natural forest to shrub, grassland, and permanent building.
As a result there is a decrease in the rate of soil infiltration and also has caused damage to the physical properties of the soil and the biosphere layer in the local ecosystem.
"Even the results of a study by the Rekonvasi Bhumi Banten NGO mentioned that the damage in Sangiang Island also includes the destruction of mangrove forest which has a diameter of three meters, coral reef destruction, coastal sand dredging and the destruction of the island's distinctive tropical flora and fauna. Therefore the defendant must be held accountable for his actions which have caused such severe natural damage and left him for granted, "the prosecutor said.
When asked whether the defendant understood the charge of the prosecutor's indictment, Dewanto admitted that he did not understand the contents of the indictment and kept answering that opinion even though the prosecutor tried to explain the indictment's intentions.
The Chief Judge decided to continue the trial on 11 April and asked the defendant to present his defense on his agenda of the execution.Meanwhile, a number of Banten figures asked the public including the press to keep a close watch on the legal process of the case of Sangiang Island destruction which is now underway and not to end in a way that is not clear because the defendant is known to be slick with the authorities.
"The proof is that, several times, the DPRD has been denied the responsibility of Sangiang Island's degradation, Dewanto can be evasive," said Edi Muliadi, former Chairman of Serang DPRD. (* / lpk)