Monday, May 29, 2017
Criminal prosecutions in Indonesia
PT. Sasa Inti makes SASA food flavourings. Santoso Wiryanto was reported to the authorities for allegedly manufacturing a flavour seasoning product using similar packaging to the complainant’s SASA registered trademark. The accused was alleged to have purchased bulk flavour seasoning and put it in similar packages. The Jakarta Regional Police conducted a raid on the accused’s house on 11 February 2013 and secured evidence in the form of 110 boxes bearing the SASA trademark, 2 sealer machines and 13 boxes of ready-to-sell SASA products.
A criminal case was filed at the West Java District Court. The Court found the accused guilty of deliberately and without rights using a trademark that is similar in principle to a registered trademark The Court sentenced the accused to 7 months imprisonment and an IDR 50,000,000 ($3,800) fine.
The public prosecutor and the accused each filed an appeal with Jakarta High Court. The High Court supported the first instance decision. The accused filed an appeal with the Supreme Court. He argued technicalities over errors in the police documents. The Supreme Court rejected the accused’s argument. The Panel of Justices saw the lower court correctly found that the products made by the accused used similar packaging bearing the complainant’s SASA registered trademark.
Criminal prosecution are rare. This case shows that the system can work; the shame is that so few cases ever get to trial.