One of Indonesia's leading human rights and anti-corruption lawyers, Todung Mulya Lubis, has vowed to continue fighting graft after being disbarred from practising law by the honour board of the Bar Association. Dr Lubis was expelled last week after another lawyer, Hotman Paris Hutapea, filed a complaint against him for an ethics violation. He said the judges' verdict was 'ruthless, unjust and baseless' and he intends to appeal against the decision within 21 days. 'I will appeal to the national board,' said Dr Lubis, who claims 'corrupt lawyers' were behind his expulsion. 'It is a hatred move. It's an effort to kill my character as an attorney,' said the 59-year-old top corporate lawyer, who has also defended some of Indonesia's highest-profile human rights and freedom-of-the-press cases. 'Many attorneys see me as trouble, especially attorneys who like to beat around the legal bush. I don't try to trick the law and seemingly many hate me for that.' A 1974 law graduate from the University of Indonesia, Dr Lubis also holds masters degrees in law from the University of California, Berkeley, and Harvard University. He was a human rights activist during the 32-year Suharto regime, something he carried on doing after the late dictator relinquished power in 1998. He is a member of the board of the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation, the Indonesian Human Rights Monitor, and KONTRAS, or the Commission for Disappearances and Victims of Violence. In the last few years, he has also focused on fighting corruption, and he was, until recently, chairman of the executive board of Transparency International Indonesia. He is still the head of Indonesia Corruption Watch, the country's leading anti-graft watchdog. 'Even if I should not be able to continue my career as lawyer, I will still be involved in fighting graft,' he said. Bar Association director Indra Sahnun Lubis said the revocation of Dr Lubis' licence was invalid and violated human rights and the principle of justice. 'If there has been a violation of the advocate's code of conduct, there should simply be a warrant,' he said. Two of the honour board's five members had proposed that Dr Lubis should have his licence revoked for a year. But board disciplinary council chairman Jack Sidabutar said the decision also took into consideration Dr Lubis' seniority. 'We thought he should have mastered advocate ethics by now, but in fact he still violated them,' he said, acknowledging that the disbarring of a senior lawyer was unprecedented in Indonesia. The verdict was commended by Dr Hotman. The case has its roots in 2002, when Dr Lubis was asked by the Indonesia Bank Restructuring Agency (IBRA) to audit companies that had been hit by the economic crisis and were unable to pay their debts to the government. One of the conglomerates he audited was the Salim Group, founded by ethnic-Chinese Indonesian Sudomo Salim, or Lim Sioe Liong. Under the agreement, he was not allowed to take on any practice in conflict with Indonesia's Department of Finance and IBRA for a specific number of years, which according to Dr Lubis was 'only two'. However, in a legal quagmire yet to be fully explained, he has been accused of ethic infringement as he represented the Salim Group in a legal case against the Sugar Group Company in 2006. The Sugar Group Company, defended by Dr Hotman, used to be a subsidiary of the Salim Group. In the case, the Department of Finance was also a defendant.