KUALA TERENGGANU: The owner of an oil tanker found illegally berthed near the Pulau Duyong Marina Jetty is repeating the offence, says the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Authority (MMEA).
Yesterday, the MMEA impounded the MT Aliya Sari and detained its five Bangladeshi crew, aged between 30 and 50, after the vessel was seen anchored in the area.
The MMEA said that Shafwatur Rahman Mohammad Syafiie, the owner of the Port Klang-registered oil tanker, had pleaded guilty in 2016 to a similar offence.
“We received a tip-off from the public who questioned the vessel’s activities there,” said MMEA eastern region deputy director (operations) Captain V. Pannir.
He said that the MT Aliya Sari was carrying about 240,000 litres of diesel worth an estimated RM500,000.
Investigations also revealed that its four crew did not have valid travel documents and claimed to be heading to Pulau Redang from Kuantan.
They also said the diesel cargo was for generators on the island and provided photocopies of documents to substantiate their claim.
However, Capt Pannir could not confirm if it was a smuggling attempt.
“We will be checking its (the documents’) authenticity with relevant authorities,” he said.
In 2016, Shafwatur Rahman had pleaded guilty at the magistrate’s court to violating Section 26(a), Section 36(1) and Section 37(1) of the Customs Act 1967 and was fined RM12,000. At the time, the ship was carrying about 81,000 litres of diesel worth over RM135,000.