Major Smuggling Attempt Worth RM42.38M foiled by Sabah Customs

Paddy Abd Halim (third, right) with other Customs officers, showing off the seized contraband to the media on Monday.
Paddy Abd Halim (third, right) with other Customs officers, showing off the seized contraband to the media on Monday.

KOTA KINABALU – Sabah Customs seized various kinds of goods valued at RM42.38 million, including tax, which is the largest seizure ever made in that state, last week.

Customs assistant director-general (Enforcement) Datuk Paddy Abd Halim said items including liquor, tyres, cigarettes and rice stored in 62 containers were seized in Sepanggar port between Sept 12 to 14.

He said the contents comprised 853,776 litres of alcoholic beverages in 49 containers, 11,000 tyres (11 containers), 11 million contraband cigarettes (1 container), 500 bags of rice weighing 25,000kg (1 container) – the import duties for which amounted to RM37.14 million.

“All items were declared as household goods, machinery and hardware, among others,” he told reporters here Monday.

He said the alcoholic beverages were believed to have been brought in from Singapore and Vietnam; and tyres from Hong Kong and China but the customs authorities were still investigating whether the goods involved registered companies.

He also did not rule out the possibility that smuggling syndicates were involved but the matter was still under investigation.

He added this is the largest seizure in Sabah following the establishment of the “Collaboration Border Management” which was set up in Sepanggar Port early this month.