4 fishing crew were arrested with suspected drug crystals

By: Aida Aziz

KUALA KURAU: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (APMM) through the Kuala Kurau Maritime Zone seized several transparent plastic packets containing suspected methamphetamine crystals at a position 1.56 nautical miles northwest of Kuala Terong, yesterday.

Perak State Maritime Director and Maritime Captain Mohd Hambali Ya’akup said, during a routine patrol in the waters of Kerian and Larut Matang, the Maritime Malaysia patrol boat team detected a fibreglass fishing boat moving under suspicious conditions.

“Aware of the presence of Malaysian Maritime personnel, the boat was determined to escape but was successfully intercepted and stopped.

“The results of the inspection found a total of three Myanmarese fishing crew and one local crew between the ages of  25 to 60 years on the boat.

“Further inspection found that the three Myanmar fishing crews did not have any valid identification documents,” he told reporters.

He also said that the boat also did not have a valid license and as many as 100 units of dragon traps estimated to be worth RM7,000 with a value of RM70 per unit were also found.

The fishing crew, boats and dragon traps were arrested and taken to the Kuala Kurau Maritime Zone Jetty.

“The act of the skipper trying to escape has prompted Maritime Malaysia to conduct further inspections at the jetty.

“The result of an inspection of the personal belongings of all the fishing crew found several transparent plastic packets containing crystals estimated to weigh 60 grams suspected to be methamphetamine.

“The crystals estimated to be worth RM8,400 with a value of RM140 for each gram have been seized for further action,” he added.

He said the case was investigated under the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 for possession of drugs, Section 6 (1)(c) of the Immigration Act 1959/63 for living in Malaysia without a valid identity document and Section 11 (3)(b) of the Fisheries Act 1985 i.e. possessing unauthorized fishing equipment.

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