Prosecuting corporate crime in Indonesia: recruitment agencies that traffic migrant workers

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This article examines the legal and political context for prosecuting corporate crime in Indonesia. It presents a case study of the landmark case in which a migrant labour recruitment agency was successfully prosecuted for human trafficking. This article explains the rationale and motivation of the prosecution in four sections. First, it considers the development and purpose of corporate liability as a legal concept to foreground the second section, which outlines the legal and policy framework for pursuing corporations that commit crime in Indonesia. This section also offers a detailed discussion about how individuals have been proceeded against in human trafficking cases that involve corporations. Third, this article presents a case study of the first and only instance where a corporation was successfully prosecuted for human trafficking to highlight the sequence of events that made the effort possible. Fourth, the discussion that follows identifies the prosecution's motivations for bringing the case, and makes empirical conclusions about the purpose of prosecuting corporations for human trafficking through the Indonesian legal system. In conclusion, this article argues that the institutional drive to punish corporate involvement in economic crime has created the necessary systems to seek the punishment of a wider range of other corporate crimes, including human trafficking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-44
Number of pages22
JournalAsian Journal of Comparative Law
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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