Learning Point

Land that has been pledged more than 7 years must be returned to the Pledgor as the landowner without having to pay a ransom, while the Pledgee who has possession for more than 7 years must pay compensation to the landowner.

Case Summary

Plaintiff’s parents owned a plot of land ± 25 acres. In 1982, the disputed land was pledged as collateral by the Plaintiff’s parents for a loan in the amount of IDR 200,000.- That loan was used for the cost of Hajj and upon his return from Hajj H. Yasin could not repay the loan. In 2006 Plaintiff III has come to Defendant to pay off the debt of H. Yasin (Plaintiff III’s parents), but was refused because the Defendant still wanted to cultivate the disputed land and it was approved by H. Yasin.

H. Yasin died in 2006, Plaintiff III again met the Defendant to pay off H. Yasin’s debt, but Defendant refused the payment by arguing that the labur sale and purchase has been conducted over the land. In 2009 there was a change of name of the land owner in Kohir books and Tax Determination book from Plaintiff’s parents name to H. Muhammad Amin. Defendant is acting in bad faith to own the disputed object (land) illegally and unlawfully. Moreover, the land has been transformed from a plantation to brick-making field by digging the land, so the land as disputed object has been destroyed without the Plaintiffs’ permission.

Legal Consideration

At first level, Judges rejected the Plaintiffs’ suit by arguing that the Plaintiff could not prove the possession of the land by the Defendant on the basis of pledge.

Sources  Legal View - Omnibus Law on Spatial Planning

First level decision was canceled at appeal level by arguing that the disputed land belongs to the Plaintiffs as the heirs of H. Yasin Bin Ali At Anwar. Judges at appeal level, give consideration that privately-drawn labur sale and purchase transaction must be “transparent and cash” while the transparent condition is not fulfilled since there is no witness from the local village chief and other competent witness.

Judges at appeal level believes that legal action that the legal event occurring between the Plaintiffs’ parents and H.M. Amin (Defendant) is a pledge for a loan for Hajj pilgrimage. Therefore, if the pledge period has lasted more than 7 years, the land must be immediately returned to the pledgor (landowner) without any condition including without any obligation of pledgor to pay the ransom while the Pledgee who has possessed the land for more than 7 years must pay compensation to the land owner.

Toward the High Court Decision of Mataram, the defendant files cassation to Supreme Court. Nevertheless, the Supreme Court rejected cassation application from the Defendant by arguing that the legal action occurring between H. Yasin and H.M. Amin was a pledge of land. Supreme Court’s judges agree with High Court of Mataram’s decision. Since the land pledge has lasted more than 7 years, the land must be immediately returned.

I Gusti Made Rajendra Nananjaya