"We remind corporations, especially plantation companies, to really protect their land, so there will be no fires this year," said Director of Special Criminal Investigation of the South Kalimantan Regional Police Sr Comr Masrur in Banjarmasin.
He said, the provincal police is focus on handling cases of land fires that occur in company-owned area. While individual actors are handled by the district police ranks.
According to Masrur, the legal consequences of arsonists on company land are havier than individuals. Not only Criminal Code (KUHP), the police investigator will also use Law No 32 of 2009 concerning the environment to charge the corporate suspect.
"We are very firm to charge the perpetrators who cause a land fire in the corporate area, because of the large impact it causes," said Masrur.
Last year, to strengthen evidence to charge a corporate suspect, the South Kalimantan Provincial Police brought in forest and land fire expert Prof Bambang Hero Saharjo and Dr Basuki Wasis as environmental damage expert from the Bogor Institute of Agriculture (IPB).
"The Task Force for land and forest fire law enforcement (Satgas Gakkum Karhutla) has been formed by the Police Chief. We hope the team will not work in line with the absence of land fires in South Kalimantan. Prevention is better than having to face the law due to deliberate or negligent causes of burning land," Masrur pointed out.
Meanwhile, the South Kalimantan Provincial Police has prepared a Bekantan application as a medium for community to participate in preventing and overcoming forest and land fires.
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