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Canadian engineer free after six months in jail


February 24, 2012
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Pulp and paper engineer Rick van Lee was freed from jail in Indonesia following an appeal to the High Court in Pekanbaru. On Feb. 2, the court changed van Lee’s sentence to six months (which equaled time served) and released him.

Pulp and paper engineer Rick van Lee was freed from jail in Indonesia following an appeal to the High Court in Pekanbaru. On Feb. 2, the court changed van Lee’s sentence to six months (which equaled time served) and released him.

According to the web site www.freerickvanlee.com, which was established to rally support for van Lee during his trial, the engineer and his wife have left Indonesia.

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From the account of the trail on the web site: “Although the High Court was more objective compared with the district court in Pelalawang it still didn’t declare Rick not guilty which of course would have been the right thing to do and therefore a fair trial and justice haven’t prevailed.”

In December 2011, van Lee was sentenced to three years in prison for theft of confidential company data. He had been working for Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL) at the time of his arrest. In that capacity he served as technical manager for Riau Andan Pulp & Paper (RAPP), a subsidiary of APRIL.

The case involved allegations that van Lee used private storage media for safekeeping company data.

During his 37-year career, van Lee has worked for global consulting engineering companies such as Amec, Ausenco, KSH Solutions, and Poyry, as well as equipment suppliers and pulp and paper producers.


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