KUCHING: The Sessions Court recently sentenced a man from Tabuan Hilir to nine months’ jail after he pleaded guilty to three charges of stealing electricity.
This was the first case in which a power thief has been sentenced to jail.
The accused, Drahman Maludin, was charged under Section 33 of the Electricity Ordinance with stealing electricity and supplying electricity illegally to his neighbours through unidentified meters.
His guilty plea was recorded in the presence of Sessions Court Judge, Marutin Pagan, on Jan 20.
For the first charge, Drahman was ordered to pay a fine of RM25,000 or, in default, three months’ imprisonment under Section 33(1) of the Electricity Ordinance for supplying electricity to and for the use of any other person.
He was also charged under Section 33(3) with causing danger to human life and properties by tampering with meter installations. This law provides for a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment with or without a fine. The court sentenced him to three months’ jail.
For the third charge under Section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance, Drahman was ordered to pay RM25,000 or, in default, three months’ imprisonment for dishonestly abstracting electricity.
The Utilities Ministry was represented by the State Attorney General’s Chambers, while Drahman was represented by a counsel.
A spokesperson for the ministry said the offence was uncovered during a joint operation with Sarawak Energy utility arm, Syarikat Sesco Berhad (Sesco) on March 2014 at Tabuan Hilir.
The inspection team found that Drahman illegally connected electricity to eight houses in the neighbourhood through unidentified meters.
It was learned that the electricity supply was illegally abstracted from incoming neutral and live service lines through direct tapping. All illegal wirings and tampered meters were seized and sent to the meter lab for further investigation.
Drahman was also charged for arrears amounting to RM47,290.50, being losses incurred by Sarawak Energy due to power theft.