KOTA KINABALU: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) succeeded in intercepting an attempt to smuggle petrol out of the state in waters off the Semporna district early Sunday morning (Nov 3).
Two men were detained on board a traditional boat (jongkong) with 260 plastic jerry cans believed to be filled with 6,500l of petrol at around 1am near Pulau Bohayen in Semporna.
Semporna Maritime Zone director Commander Norrimi Hassan said a patrol boat approached the vessel during its routine rounds.
“Our enforcement officers tried to stop the suspicious vessel but the skipper, 35, fled upon seeing the patrol boat.
“A chase ensued and they managed to intercept the vessel, where the skipper and a 31-year-old crewman were found on board with no valid documents together with the jerry cans, ” he said in a statement Sunday (Nov 3).
The boat is believed to have been making its way to Sitangkai in Philippines.
This is the fifth case involving detainment recorded by Semporna MMEA for this year.
Norrimi said the seized items namely the traditional boat, outboard engine and 260 jerry cans are estimated to be worth RM68,000 and have been towed to Azumi Camp jetty in Semporna for investigations under The Control of Supplies Act 1961.
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