Sesco wins court case on power theft arrears recovery

Foreign components found in the meter - receiver, relay and wires

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KUCHING, March 11: The Sessions Court in Sibu recently dismissed a claim against Sarawak Energy by a supermarket owner located at Jalan Salim as evidence of the case clearly pointed to tampering of their electricity meter.

The presiding Judge ruled that the proprietor had failed to prove their claim and further allowed Sarawak Energy to counterclaim with costs.

According to Sarawak Energy in a media release, the customer was charged with arrears amounting to RM127,932.60 on May 25, 2015.

While waiting for the outcome of their appeal to the power utility against the arrears charged, the premises owners filed an injunction against Sarawak Energy to prevent disconnection of supply and its demand for arrears on March 14, 2018.

Findings from the investigation showed a remote control relay was installed inside the meter and the meter’s electronic circuit board had been tampered with, resulting in unregistered electricity consumption by the meter.

Tampering of meter circuit board.

Unregistered electricity consumption through by-passing the electricity meter is classified as stealing electricity in Sarawak – a criminal offence under Section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance carrying a penalty of up to RM100,000 and/or five years’ jail.

It also endangered lives and can damage customer properties including electrical appliances which may lead to fire.

Sarawak Energy through Sesco is mandated to recover arrears or estimated unpaid amounts as a result of theft by the account holders.

The utility company emphasised that it will continue to carry out meter inspections and investigation operations throughout Sarawak together with the Ministry of Utilities and the police to curb this dangerous crime.

Sarawak Energy reminded customers not to trust service providers claiming to be able to reduce electricity bills or enjoy limitless electricity as meter inspection teams were trained to detect power theft through meter tampering.

Sarawak Energy appreciates the support from members of the public and encourages the public to continue to report to Sarawak Energy on any power theft information, including details of power theft service providers via Sarawak Energy’s customer care centre at 1300-88-3111 or email at — DayakDaily