Power theft: Sarawak Energy, police cripple crypto mining operation at house in Stampin

Tampering was done near the electricity meter (circled red) to steal electricity at the residence in Jalan Stampin.

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KUCHING, Dec 29: A cryptocurrency mining operation at a double-storey semi-detached house located at Jalan Stampin here has been busted by Sarawak Energy and the police for stealing electricity.

In a media release, Sarawak Energy said a total of 14 cryptocurrency mining servers worth RM36,250 and other electronic equipment found on-site during the joint raid operation following a public tip-off have been seized.

All cryptocurrency mining servers and equipment were seized by the police, with the tampered electricity metre seized by Sarawak Energy for evidence in court.

A police report has been lodged and both the operator and the house owner will be called for further investigations.

It was estimated that Sarawak Energy has incurred about RM2,900 in monthly losses due to unregistered electricity consumption from the electricity theft.

Cryptocurrency mining servers at Jalan Stampin.

The operator and house owner may be charged for stealing electricity under Section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance, which carries a penalty of up to RM100,000 and/or five years jail if found guilty.

Sarawak Energy warned that cryptocurrency mining is known to consume a high amount of electricity as it runs 24-hours with the electrical system can be easily overloaded whenever electricity is stolen to power such activities, leading to unnecessary outages or low voltages that could damage appliances and affect nearby customers.

The utility company reminds everyone that stealing electricity is illegal and dangerous as it may lead to fire and electrocution as in most cases, the illegal connections are not in accordance with Sesco’s safety standards.

Individuals are advised not to disregard any safety risks to themselves and the public for profit and to always ensure that their electricity supply is not from a stolen source.

Together with the Ministry of Utilities and the police, Sarawak Energy will continue to search and track down all power thieves.

Landlords renting out their houses or shop lots are advised to have the accounts registered under the tenant’s name to protect themselves from any liabilities in the event of metre tampering.

Customers are also advised not to trust service providers claiming to be able to reduce electricity bills or allow premises owners to enjoy limitless electricity through meter tampering.

Metre inspection teams are trained to detect various electricity theft methods as part of Sarawak Energy’s efforts to curb power theft.

Sarawak Energy also encouraged the public to report any suspected electricity theft cases in their neighbourhoods by contacting Sarawak Energy’s customer care centre at 1300-88-3111 or email at customercare@sarawakenergy.com. All information received will be kept strictly confidential. — DayakDaily