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Judicial Dysfunction in Indonesia

Simon Butt



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05 December 2023
An analysis of corruption in Indonesia's courts.

Indonesia's judicial system has long been described as dysfunctional. Many of its problems developed out of decades of authoritarian rule, which began in the last few years of the reign of Indonesia's first president, Soekarno. By the time President Soeharto's regime fell in 1998, the judiciary had virtually collapsed. Judicial dependence on government, inefficiency and corruption were commonly seen as the main indicators of poor performance, resulting in very low levels of public trust in the courts.

To address these problems, reformists focused on improving judicial independence. Yet while independence is a basic prerequisite for adequate judicial performance, much depends on how this independence is exercised. Judicial Dysfunction in Indonesia demonstrates that Indonesian courts have tended to act without accountability and offers detailed analysis of highly controversial decisions by Indonesian courts, many of which have been of major political significance, both domestically and internationally. It sets out in concrete terms, for the first time, how bribes are negotiated and paid to judges and demonstrates that judges have issued poor decisions and engaged in corruption and other misconduct, largely without fear of retribution. Further, it explores unsafe convictions and public pressure as a threat to judicial independence.

Judicial Dysfunction in Indonesia shines a sorely needed empirical light on the Indonesian judicial system, and is an essential resource for readers, scholars and students of Indonesian law and society.

Country of Publication:   Australia
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 155mm,  Spine: 29mm
Weight:   485g
ISBN:   9780522879919
ISBN 10:   0522879918
Pages:   372
Publication Date:  
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Simon Butt is Professor of Indonesian Law at the University of Sydney Law School, where he teaches Indonesian law and Private International Law. Fluent in Indonesian, and having spent years in Indonesia, he has written widely on Indonesian law, including Corruption and Law in Indonesia (2012), The Constitutional Court and Democracy in Indonesia (2015), and co-authored The Constitution of Indonesia- A Contextual Analysis (2012) and Indonesian Law (2018) with Tim Lindsey.

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