BUTTERWORTH: Nine individuals from the Road Transport Department (JPJ) and Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) pleaded not guilty to 164 bribery charges at a Sessions Court here.
The nine individuals were charged with allegedly receiving bribes amounting to RM136,000 over a span of three years.
The individuals comprised of JPJ officers Muhamad Syukri Ishak, Khairol Naim Mat Desa, Muhammad Firdaus Jaafar, Noorzaimi Effendi Salleh, Mohd Fairdaus Ishak, M. Muniandy, Katimi Azmi and Pirdaus Abd Karim as well as former SPAD officer Mohd Noor Fadzny Noordin.
They were all charged under Section 16(a)(B) Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 with receiving bribes as inducement to not take action against lorry companies that committed offences against the Land Public Transport Act 2010 and the Road Transport Act 1987.
The nine individuals also pleaded not guilty to their respective alternative charges under Section 165 of the Penal Code.
DPP's S. Selvaranjini and Mohamad Azlan Basri prosecuted.
Judge Nizam Zakaria set bail ranging from RM11,000 to RM20,000 with one surety each and ordered them to surrender their passports.
She then set July 2 for case management.
In April, the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) arrested 24 individuals in connection with a lorry protection racket involving JPJ personnel.
Previous reports citing sources said the enforcement officers were believed to have received monthly payments between RM10,000 and RM32,000.
The payments were inducement for the JPJ enforcement officers to avoid taking action against lorry drivers who committed road offences.
The payments were also for tip-offs which companies and drivers received to alert them about JPJ operations.
Sources also said those who had paid the "protection" money would be given special logos to display on their windscreens for JPJ personnel to identify them.