SIBU: Contraband cigarette and beer worth a total of RM337,166, inclusive of tax, were seized by members of 10th Battalion General Operation Force (GOF) during Ops Libas conducted on premises in Selangau, about one hour's drive from here.
Commander Supt Sanudin Mohamad Isa said on Wednesday (May 22) that the seizure was the biggest as the festive seasons loom.
"During Raya, the demand for cigarette increases and so does beer for Gawai. Though it looks like we enjoy taking action against smuggling activity, the fact is that smuggling shouldn't be happening as it is an offence," he added.
Commenting on the operation, which was conducted between 11am and 3pm on Tuesday (May 21) against two businesses in Selangau, he said it involved a team of his enforcement officers, the police and three officers from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
"From the first premises, the team found 2,367 cartons of cigarettes and 55 boxes of beer of various brands believed to have been smuggled into the state with a value of RM320,964, inclusive of import tax.
"At the second premises, we found 100 boxes of beers worth RM12,202, inclusive of tax," he added.
Supt Sanusi said the modus operandi of the suspects was to keep the items in the store room before selling them in the black market in Selangau.
No arrests have been made in the two cases.
The cases, he said, was being investigated under Section 135 (1) (d) of Custom Act 1967.
The offence provides for a penalty of RM10,000 fine or 10 times the value of goods seized whichever is higher and a jail sentence of between six months to three years or both.