Court says that Equanimity was wrongly impounded

An Indonesian court ruled this week that luxury $250m yacht Equanimity, which had been linked by US investigating authorities to an alleged corruption scandal at Malaysian state fund 1MDB, was wrongfully impounded.

Authorities seized the Cayman Islands-flagged yacht in Bali in February at the request of US authorities. The court has now ordered that it be released, police said.

Rudy Heriyanto Adi, Director of Indonesia’s Special Economic Crimes unit, told a news conference that South Jakarta State Court had stated that the seizure of the yacht on February was “illegal and not based on the law”. Police would return the ship to its owner, Equanimity Cayman Ltd, he said.

Lawyer Andi Simangungsong,  representing the owner of the ship, said that “it’s clear that the seizure of the ship only happened because there was a request from the FBI, but it was not based on law. With this ruling it is clear all foreign requests must follow procedure,” said. The US had said that Equanimity was bought by Jho Low, a key financier linked to 1MDB, which is the subject of money-laundering investigations in the US, Switzerland and Singapore, as well as elsewhere.