Po­lice and Cus­toms team up to fight crime in the coun­try

The Star Malaysia - - Nation - By FARIK ZOLKEPLI [email protected]­tar.com.my

GENT­ING HIGH­LANDS: The po­lice and the Cus­toms Depart­ment have formed five joint com­mit­tees to tackle mul­ti­ple crimes, in­clud­ing the smug­gling of il­licit cig­a­rettes, drugs and other con­tra­band, said Tan Sri Mo­hamad Fuzi Harun.

The In­spec­tor-Gen­eral of Po­lice said the co­op­er­a­tion will lead to more joint op­er­a­tions, in­clud­ing nab­bing tonto (syn­di­cate in­for­mants) who have dis­rupted Cus­toms’ op­er­a­tions in the past.

“Our co­op­er­a­tion will also in­volve more in­for­ma­tion-shar­ing be­tween the two de­part­ments.

“We will not be work­ing in si­los or iso­la­tion.

“The joint com­mit­tees will meet reg­u­larly to iron out de­tails and co­or­di­nate joint op­er­a­tions be­tween the two de­part­ments,” he told a press con­fer­ence after a two-day meet­ing be­tween the top lead­er­ships of the two de­part­ments, which ended yes­ter­day.

As for the tonto is­sue, the IGP gave his as­sur­ance that the po­lice will take proac­tive steps in as­sist­ing the Cus­toms in their op­er­a­tions.

Among other facets of the co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the two teams will be to deal with Malaysian drug mules nabbed over­seas, Mo­hamad Fuzi added.

“For ex­am­ple, when a Malaysian drug mule is ar­rested by Hong Kong Cus­toms of­fi­cers, then the po­lice would be the one asked on the mat­ter.

“With the co­op­er­a­tion, Cus­toms can as­sist by get­ting in­for­ma­tion from their Hong Kong coun­ter­part,” Mo­hamad Fuzi said.

Cus­toms di­rec­tor-gen­eral Datuk Seri Subro­ma­niam Tho­lasy said the po­lice have also agreed to pro­vide more se­cu­rity for Cus­toms of­fi­cers man­ning the bor­der check­points na­tion­wide.

“We are grate­ful for the co­op­er­a­tion as both de­part­ments are fo­cused on com­bat­ing crimes,” he said.

The depart­ment will also step up their op­er­a­tions against the smug­gling of il­licit cig­a­rettes and al­co­holic bev­er­ages – two prob­lems that are on the rise in the coun­try.

“We have iden­ti­fied the syn­di­cates in­volved in the smug­gling of con­tra­band,” he added.

Subro­ma­niam also said amend­ments to the Cus­toms Act 1967 and the Ex­cise Act 1976 had al­ready taken ef­fect, which car­ries a min­i­mum of RM100,000 fine for those con­victed of sell­ing il­licit cig­a­rettes.

“It ap­plies to those who even sells only one box of smug­gled cig­a­rettes or a case of liquor.

“Six cases have been pros­e­cuted and the cul­prits con­victed.

“We have sev­eral other cases where trial is pend­ing,” said Subro­ma­niam.

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