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Lion Air to Pay Rp. 19.1 mn for Lost Baggage

Indonesian Supreme Court Orders Lion Air to Compensate Passenger Whose Bag Went Missing on Medan to Semarang Flight

(10/24/2013) Jawa Post reports that the Indonesian Supreme Court has refused an appeal by the Indonesian low-cost carrier Lion Air challenging a lower-court ruling that ordered the Airline to pay Rp. 19.1 million (US$1,700) to a passenger for a piece of missing luggage.

The Supreme Court ordered Lion Air to pay Robert Mangatas Silitonga that amount  in connection with a suitcase that went missing on a July 12, 2011 flight from Medan to Semarang.

Siltonga was traveling on that date with his wife, Ruth Erlin Pujiati, on board Lion Air JT387. The flight experienced a two-hour delay during a transit stopover in Jakarta, causing Robert and his wife to change the original flight booking for the segment Jakarta-Semarang.

Lion Air was unable to find the piece of checked luggage checked in by the couple when they first boarded the aircraft in Medan.

In the original suit against the Airline Silitonga sought compensation in an amount 100 time the actual material loss of Rp. 1.9 million, an amount if agreed by the court could have been equal to Rp. 1.9 billion (US$173,000).

The district court in Semarang, Central Java ruled in Silitonga's favor but only ,granted damages in a lesser amount of Rp. 19.1 million.

Dissatisfied with the Court’s decision, Lion Air’s lawyers appealed the case to the Indonesian Supreme Court, claiming the plaintiff did not have the jurisdictional right to sue the airline.

In reviewing the case the Supreme Court ruled Lion Air ruled the airline must compensate the loss suffered by the passenger and that the Airline’s appeal lacked the necesary proof that the law had been misapplied needed to qualify for a Supreme Court review.

The Supreme Court therefore refused the legal appeal of Lion Air and ordered the airline to pay the stipulated compensation of Rp. 19.1 million plus Rp. 500,000 (US$45) in court costs.