SEMPORNA: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) foiled an attempt by two men to smuggle out 1,450 litres of petrol in the waters off Pulau Bum Bum near here, Saturday.

Semporna Maritime Zone director, Maritime Commander Norrimi Hassan said the MMEA team was on a routine patrol when it came upon two suspicious-looking boats manned by two men, aged 31 and 35, trying to transport 58 barrels of oil before being detained at 8 am.

“The patrol team tried to stop the two boats but the boats’ skippers tried to speed off on spotting the patrol team before being arrested. Both men did not have any valid identification documents,” he said in a statement here today.

Norrimi said this was the third smuggling case so far recorded in the Semporna Maritime Zone for this year.

“The first and second cases involved an attempt to smuggle combustible materials in February and April which was thwarted by the MMEA,” he added.

Norrimi said the MMEA will continue to increase patrols and enforcement in the area from time to time to curb criminal activities.

He urged the public to cooperate by channeling information and complaints to the Semporna Maritime Zone at 089-782619 or MERS 999. – Bernama