Locals still sneaking into Singapore

Unidentified men using an illegal route which bypasses the Johor Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex in Johor Baru to walk over to Singapore. —filepic

PEKAN NENAS: Locals working in Singapore continue to find all sorts of ways and means to avoid queuing up at the immigration counters at the Bangunan Sultan Iskandar Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex (CIQ).

In the past, they have gone to the Island Republic by scaling over the wall and then walking via the railway lines, trying to sneak out by hiding inside buses during peak hours and now a 23-year-old was nabbed trying to leave the country using an entrance meant only for CIQ staff.

R.Manalan, who works in Singapore as a cashier, will be spending two months in the Kluang prison after he failed to pay the RM1,800 fine imposed by the Sessions Court.

Sessions Court judge Salawati Djambri meted out the sentence on the accused after he pleaded guilty to the offence under Section 2 (2) of the Passport Act 1966 for failure to show his passport to an immigration officer when exiting the country.

According to the facts of the case, the accused was arrested at Gate 10 of the CIQ, which was an access only for personnel stationed at the check-point, at 8pm on Sept 25.

So far this year, dozens of locals, have been fined for trying to sneak out of the country by trying to bypass the CIQ to work in Singapore.

Meanwhile, in an unrelated case, Singapore's Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers at the Second Link Tuas checkpoint detained two bus drivers for trying to smuggle in S$355,690 (RM1.06mil) worth of contraband cigarettes and chewing tobacco into the country in two separate cases.

The first case was detected when a bus, driven by a 30-year-old Malaysian, was pulled over for inspection and ICA officials found 2,750 cartons of cigarettes hidden inside a modified air-conditioner duct at 5am on Saturday.

In a statement, ICA said that the next day, another bus driven by a 38-year-old local was caught with 581 cartons and packets of contraband cigarettes and 25,178 sachets of chewing tobacco inside the air conditioning ducts and speakers at 4pm.

All the suspects and vehicles and seized items have been handed over to the Singapore Customs Department for further investigations.

The ICA claimed that the Malaysian in the first case has since been sentenced to 30 months imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to the charge on Monday.

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