KUCHING: From 2018 until Aug this year, cryptocurrency activities caused Sarawak Energy Berhad (SEB) to suffer revenue losses of RM21.4 million.
In revealing this, Utilities Minister Datuk Seri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom said there were 125 cases during the time period, with 74 cases reported in Miri, 41 in Kuching , eight in Sibu and two in Bintulu.
“Power theft is an offence punishable under Section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance, which carries a penalty of RM100,000 and/or five years’ imprisonment if found guilty.
“To date, 13 power theft cases prosecuted in court have pleaded guilty while another six cases are still on-going. The total fines paid for the power theft cases amounted to RM348,000,” he said when contacted by the New Sarawak Tribune.
He further disclosed that since 2010, power theft had resulted in cumulative revenue losses of about RM1,4000 million to SEB.
“The revenue losses in 2010 was RM220 million and it decreased to about RM73 million in 2020.
“In light of this, SEB had taken various measures to curb power theft including continuous active inspections statewide while working in close collaborations with our ministry, the State Attorney-General’s Chamber, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) as well as the police.
“These collaborations help to detect the use of digital technology, prosecution of the cases in court as well as create public awareness and information,” he added.
Rundi also pointed out that the SEB technical staff were adequately equipped and trained to detect power theft.
“Members of the public are encouraged to report any power theft. Power theft is a dangerous act which endangers lives and damages customers’ properties including electrical appliances which may lead to fires,” he reminded.