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The Criminal Code Responds to Existing Developments in Society

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By: Ratih Safira Utami )*

The Criminal Code (KUHP) responds to developments in society because it is adapted to an increasingly dynamic modern life. The community should be grateful for the existence of the new Criminal Code because it is hoped that it can minimize crime in cyberspace.

The Criminal Code has been ratified and the criminal law will be more perfect and protect the public from various crimes. Modern laws will be enacted and correct those who have done wrong. In addition, the Criminal Code was made by adopting Indonesian values, because it was applied to the Indonesian people.

The Speaker of the Indonesian Parliament, Puan Maharani, stated that the Criminal Code had finally been ratified after 59 years of discussion. The Criminal Code is an open recodification of all criminal provisions and responds to all developments in society so far.

He added that Indonesia is a plural country with many different cultures, ethnicities and beliefs. This difference will also cause different views on the Criminal Code. The House of Representatives of the Republic of Indonesia is tasked with seeking common views. Whereas now is the socialization period because the Criminal Code will only be valid for 3 more years.

The Criminal Code is considered to have answered developments in society because Indonesia is increasingly dynamic in the era of information technology. In the new Criminal Code there are articles that secure cyberspace such as the prohibition of hoaxes and these rules are adapted to today’s life.

The old version of the Criminal Code was a product of colonial law, was too old-fashioned and based on revenge. Imagine if a regulation was made a century ago, it is no longer relevant to the current situation. In 100 years a lot has changed, and the old Criminal Code could not accommodate these changes.

Meanwhile, the new Criminal Code uses modern laws that are not based on revenge. The formation of convicts is at the core of modern law, because it is more important than simply passing sentences. The fear is that when they are only sentenced without any rehabilitation and coaching sessions, the convicts will easily commit crimes and are not afraid to go to jail again.

In modern law it is taught that the mentality of criminals like this must be changed, so that more people obey the law. Modern laws will educate people. If anyone is in prison, they will be given guidance and skills teaching. Therefore, the term prison was changed to a penitentiary.

If there are those who insist that the new Criminal Code be abolished and continue to use the old one, then this is tantamount to a setback for law in Indonesia, because this country is not yet constitutionally independent. The new Criminal Code must be socialized and later enforced in an orderly manner. Do not let it have been independent for 77 years but use Dutch inheritance law.

When there is a Criminal Code, there are regulations in cyberspace, because the majority of Indonesian people are active in cyberspace. The Criminal Code is important for maintaining criminal law everywhere, both in the real world and in cyberspace. Modern law already covers regulation in cyberspace.

Member of Commission III DPR RI Arsul Sani stated that drafting the Criminal Code was not an easy job. The drafting of the Criminal Code will not be separated from the context of Indonesia, which consists of different religions, cultures and tribes from Sabang to Merauke.

In a sense, the Criminal Code is in harmony with Indonesian culture because it was made for Indonesians. In the Criminal Code there are articles that represent Indonesian culture such as anti-adultery articles and living law articles (customary law).

The Criminal Code is also in harmony with Indonesian culture because this country is thick with eastern culture. In Article 413 of the Criminal Code there is a prohibition against committing adultery and intercourse on the bed without legal marriage ties (by the state). The punishment is 1 year in prison or a fine of IDR 10,000,000.

Indonesia is a democratic country, not a liberal one, so the article on adultery must be applied so as not to make this country too free. Indonesian cultural values that are polite and do not apply liberalization are implemented in the latest Criminal Code. If someone protests that the Criminal Code is considered too restrictive then their nationalism should be questioned, because they have been influenced by liberalism, even though Indonesia is a democracy.

The rules in the Criminal Code are obligatory to protect Indonesian people, so that they always remember Eastern customs, politeness, and at the same time comply with the rules of their beliefs. Nowadays life is modern but that does not mean that people may violate religious norms and rules. The Criminal Code was made to protect the morals of the Indonesian people.

The new Criminal Code has answered various developments in society. The existence of anti-hoax and anti-adultery articles will protect society, both in the real world and in cyberspace. When Indonesia became independent, it was no longer permissible to use the laws of the colonial era, such as the old Criminal Code.

)* The author is a contributor to Persada Institute

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