JAKARTA (THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The National Police named PT Coca Cola Bottling Indonesia (CCB) a suspect on Friday, in an alleged illegal groundwater extraction case in Sumedang, West Java.
The police suspect the company of violating Article 94 of Law 7/2004 on water resources, by illegally extracting groundwater in the area for soft drink production without a groundwater resource permit (SIPA).
"If found guilty, the company's directors will be held responsible for the offence," said National Police deputy director for special economic crimes Brigadier General Alex Mandalika in a press conference.
According to Alex, CCB's extraction permits for eight locations in Sumedang expired in 2010 and 2011.
"The regional government there, through the Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA), had demanded the company stop the extraction, but it was ignored," Alex said.
In 2011, a CCB manager applied for permit extensions through the Board of Investment Services and Integrated Licensing (BPPMPT), and was told the company would receive it as long as it had a recommendation from the Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, according to the police.
However, CCB was unable to fulfill the requirements and gain the ministry's recommendation.
BPPMPT sent a warning letter to CCB in December 2013, demanding it stop extraction until it was able to fulfill the requirements and obtain the permit extension.
"According to our investigations, CCB was still extracting groundwater. We have temporarily halted its extraction activities in the eight locations," said Alex.