71 raids under Ops Libas yields 163 arrests, RM21 mln in illegal goods

Composite photo shows the raided premises in Jelukong, Engkilili on Oct 19, 2020.

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KUCHING, Oct 23: The General Operations Force (GOF) has seized some RM21 million worth of illicit goods under Ops Libas this year.

Sarawak GOF commander SAC Mancha Ata in a statement disclosed that the seizures were the result of 71 raids which culminated with the arrest of 163 people including 56 foreigners.

He also revealed the latest three operations held between Oct 19 and 21 at Engkilili, Sibu and Marudi where they crippled an illegal logging activity and cigarette and alcohol smuggling involving seizure of items and assets valued at about RM723,000.

On Oct 19, the team raided a house at Jelukong, Engkilili around 1pm following suspicion it was being used as a storage facility.

“During the raid, we found 13 brown boxes containing 650 cartons of illicit cigarettes of various brands worth RM97,500 (including tax). The seized items were handed over to the Lubok Antu district police for further action under Section 135 (1) (D) of the Customs Act 1967,” Mancha revealed.

Sarawak GOF personnel raided a logging site at Batu 40 along Jalan Sibu-Selangau on Oct 19, 2020.

On the same day in Sibu, another team from the 10th Battalion raided a logging site at Batu 40 along Jalan Sibu-Selangau.

“Upon seeing the enforcement officers, two workers managed to escape. The raiding team discovered an excavator, a bulldozer and 40 timber logs believed to have been illegally obtained from the area.

“An hour later, a man came and identified himself as the owner of the excavator and bulldozer. He was arrested for failing to produce any legal documents with regards to logging activities in the area.”

The total seizure value was estimated at about RM505,000.

The excavator, bulldozer and timber logs were handed over to the Forest Department Sibu to be investigated under the Sarawak Forest Ordinance 2015.

Composite photo shows the raided premises at Kampung Pemindahan, Jalan Muhibah in Marudi on Oct 21, 2020.

Meanwhile, Mancha disclosed that on 21 Oct, GOF personnel raided a double-storey house at Kampung Pemindahan, Jalan Muhibah in Marudi.

“Upon arrival, they saw a man in the mist of transferring boxes from the store room into a car. Realising the enforcement officers’ presence, the man managed to flee through the bushes behind the house. Checks revealed a total of 107 boxes of liquor, 133 cartons of cigarette and 28 cartons of kretek of various brands, in the store room and the car,” he revealed, adding that the estimated value of seized items respectively were liquor (RM16,050), cigarettes (RM24,935) and the vehicle (RM80,000). — DayakDaily