A Search in a Tax Investigation, Here’s the Process

IN general criminal disputes, investigators may conduct house searches, clothing searches, or body searches as regulated in Article 32 of Law no. 8 of 1981 concerning the Criminal Procedure Code (KUHAP). Searches can also be carried out in the process of resolving tax criminal disputes.

Provisions for search in tax criminal disputes are contained in the Circular Letter of the Director-General of Taxes No. SE-06/PJ/2014 concerning Guidelines for the Implementation of Criminal Investigations in the Taxation Sector ( SE-06/2014 ) and its attachments and the Criminal Procedure Code.

Based on attachment SE-06/2014, tax investigators are authorized to conduct house searches or body searches. A house search is the act of a tax investigator entering a residential house and other closed places to carry out inspections and/or confiscation and/or arrests in the case and according to the method regulated in the Criminal Procedure Code.

Meanwhile, a body search is the act of a tax investigator examining the suspect’s body and/or clothing to look for objects that are strongly suspected to be on his body or that he has brought along for confiscation.

Before searching, the tax investigator must request a search permit addressed to the chairman of the local District Court with a copy to the investigator of the Indonesian National Police. The search request is accompanied by an incident report, an investigation warrant, and a report on the progress of the investigation.

If a search is to be carried out in more than one jurisdiction of the District Court, permission must be requested from each chairman of the District Court whose jurisdiction covers the place where the search will be carried out.

A search can still be carried out without a permit from the District Court if it is in an urgent situation and requires the tax investigator to search immediately. After conducting a house search in a very necessary and urgent situation, the investigator is obliged to report to the Head of the local District Court for approval.

Furthermore, the search is carried out by a tax investigator whose names and identities are listed in the search warrant. The search is carried out by at least two investigators. They can be assisted by one or more experts who have certain expertise.

A tax investigator who will search must first show identification and a search warrant to the suspect or other person who is in the place. The tax investigator also explained the purpose of his arrival.

A house search can be carried out on four things. The first, is the suspect’s residence. Second, is the place of business, including offices, warehouses, and factories. Third, the other place where the suspect resides or is located. Fourth, other places where evidence is suspected.

If the tax investigator must conduct a house search outside his jurisdiction, the procedure for the search is carried out with the following provisions.

  1. request a search permit from the chairman of the local District Court;
  2. with the search permit, the tax investigator reports to the chairman of the District Court in the area where the search will be carried out; and
  3. In searching, the tax investigator is accompanied by an investigator from the jurisdiction where the search is carried out.

During a house search, the tax investigator may order everyone who is at the search site not to leave the premises. The maintenance or closure of the place concerned can also be arranged. This was done for the smooth, safe, and orderly search process.

Tax investigators who enter the house being searched must be witnessed by two witnesses if the suspect or occupant agrees. If the suspect or occupant refuses or is not present, the search by the tax investigator must be witnessed by the village head or neighborhood head with two witnesses.

In the final stage, after the search has been carried out, the tax investigator must make a search report within two days after the search is carried out. The minutes of the search shall contain a description of the implementation, the results of the search, the time of the search, and the signatures of the investigator/suspect/witnesses.

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