TAWAU (Bernama) – The Malaysia Royal Customs Department is in the process of asking for mandatory jail sentence be imposed on offenders for the smuggling and illegal distribution and selling of cigarettes and liquor.
Its deputy director-general (Enforcement and Compliance), Datuk Matrang Suhaili said the application was made as the compound fines imposed currently under the Customs Act 1967 were no longer effective in stemming these illegal activities which caused losses to the country.
“Offenders found guilty of smuggling cigarettes and liquor and distributing and selling the contraband goods are willing to pay a fine even if it reaches 20 times the value of the contraband goods.
“Hence, we are seeking prison sentence for convicted offenders,” he told reporters after the launching of the Sabah state-level “Op Pacak” Series 2/2014, here, yesterday.
On the operation, Matrang said it was aimed at crippling the distribution and sales network of critical goods like cigarettes and liquor, and the operation would be conducted until Dec 22.
“This integrated operation is also aimed at reducing the retail supply of and demand for contraband cigarettes and liquor, and it involves full enforcement of the law.
“The targeted areas are the hot spots that have been identified for rampant smuggling of critical goods,” he said.
On another note, Matrang said the Sabah Customs Department managed to collect RM3.2 million in taxes from January until November, this year.