Published: Wednesday September 12, 2012 MYT 6:47:00 PM
Customs deputy director dies in fire incident
JOHOR BARU: A senior Customs officer died after saving his car in a fire incident believed to be due to sabotage at the Johor Customs quarters in Jalan Biru 2, Taman Pelangi here Wednesday.
Johor Customs deputy director (Compliance Management Division) Ahmad Hassan, 55, fainted after driving his car out about 30 metres from his two-storey Semi-D house after a fire broke out at the porch around 4am.
"After he had moved the car, Ahmad got out to calm himself down. A while later, his housemate found him lying sprawled by his car," Johor Baru Selatan acting police chief Supt Abdul Samad Salleh told reporters here.
He said paramedics called to the scene confirmed he had died.
He added that a post-mortem done at the Sultanah Aminah Hospital here found he had died of a heart attack and that the remains of the bachelor were brought to Terengganu for burial.
According to Abdul Samad, the fire had started at the adjacent house and destroyed a Proton Savvy car owned by his neighbour and the partition wall between the two porches.
He said the fire was believed to have been caused by molotov coctails hurled into the neighbour's porch.
The motive could possibility be to serve as a threat to the five senior customs officers living at the quarters, he said, adding that the victim's death had been classified as sudden death while the fire has been classified as arson.
Meanwhile, Johor Baru Fire and Rescue chief M. Vijayan said the department received a call on the incident at 4.11am and a fire engine with seven firemen arrived at the scene 10 minutes later.
"The fire was brought under control by 4.35am and extinguished by 5am. Initial investigations found the fire started from the Proton Savvy and spread to the wooden parts of the porch while thick smoke filled the house (neighbour's house).
"During the incident, there were two occupants in the house. One managed to save himself by the time we arrived while we rescued the second victim," he said. - Bernama