Friday, April 30, 2010

Sand Thieves damaging environment

This will be another "talking-kok" publicity stunt.
410 tip-offs" and only 43 nabbed?
This illegal activity has been going on for years..." and what have they done to nab the problem?
Most of these illegal sand minings are from Barisan Najis states....and that could be the reason why it will merely be a once in a full-moon-stunt. When political masters intervene, all these stunts will end.
Gua tak caya lagi....

Friday April 30, 2010
Hunt for culprits who have made billions and damaged environment

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) is on a nationwide hunt for sand thieves who have not only raked in billions of ringgit but also caused massive damage to the environment.

It is learnt that MACC officers who went undercover have so far nabbed 43 suspects and several more are on their radar.

MACC director of investigations Mustafar Ali said a special task force had unearthed the activities of several syndicates that had been “exporting” sand under the guise of silica to a neighbouring country.

“Exporting sand is illegal but not silica which is a component in sand used to make glass.

“Nineteen people have been charged so far and more will be taken to court once we obtain the Deputy Public Prosecutor’s consent,” he told The Star.

Mustafar said the MACC had received 410 tip-offs and reports on illegal sand mining and it was working closely with other relevant agencies.

He said in one state alone, it was estimated that 3,000 lorries were transporting sand illegally, involving a face value of about RM1.6mil daily.

In a month, the sand thieves would have amassed at least RM48.9mil, and RM587mil a year. This amount does not include sand smuggled in barges.

“This illegal activity has been going on for years and they are damaging the environment, flora and fauna as well as causing erosion,’’ Mustafar added.

Mustafar said MACC investigations revealed that bribes paid out to those in authority ranged between RM500 and RM88,000, with sexual favours also thrown in.

He said those caught before the MACC Act 2009 was enforced in 2009 could be jailed a minimum of 14 days and up to 20 years, and fined RM10,000 or five times the gratification amount, whichever is higher, or both.

Under the MACC Act, a person convicted of the offence could be jailed up to 20 years or fined five times the amount of gratification or both.

Mustafar appealed to the public who knew of such illegal activities to contact the authorities.

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