Published: Monday September 3, 2012 MYT 2:21:00 PM
Shop owner fined almost 12 times more for contraband cigarettes
By DERRICK VINESH
BUKIT MERTAJAM: A shop owner learned the hard way when a Magistrates court here sentenced him to a fine that was almost 12 times more than the value of the illegal items in his possession.
He was fined a total of RM33,500 in default 12 months jail for possessing RM2,963.60 worth of contraband cigarettes.
Por Beng Soon, 46, from Taman Sejahtera Permai, Bukit Mertajam pleaded guilty to all three charges that were separately read out and sentenced.
His first charge was for possession of 6,800 sticks of cigarettes of various brands worth a total of RM204 in a house at 1, Lorong Sejahtera Permai 2, Taman Sejahtera Permai, Alma in Bukit Mertajam at about 5pm on May 18 last year.
The offence, under Section 135 (1) (d) of the Customs Act 1967, carries a minimum fine of RM2,040 and maximum fine of RM4,080 or jail term of not more than three years or both.
His second charge was for possession of 6,800 sticks of cigarettes of various brands and 2,080 sticks of kretek cigarettes of various brands worth a total of RM677.60 at Aik Hou Mini Market on 69, Jalan Alma Jaya, Taman Budiman, Alma, Bukit Mertajam at about 4pm on May 18 last year.
The offence carries a minimum fine of RM6,776 and maximum fine of RM13,552 or jail term of not more than three years or both.
His third charge was for possession of 18,000 sticks of cigarettes of various brands and 7,800 sticks of kretek cigarettes of various brands worth a total of RM2,082 in a house at 10, Lorong Impian 19, Taman Impian, Alma, Bukit Mertajam at about 4.30pm on May 18 last year.
The offence carries a minimum fine of RM20,820 and maximum fine of RM41,640 or jail term of not more than three years or both.
Por was first charged on July 17 and had been earlier released on a RM15,000 bail.
He pleaded for leniency on all three charges, saying that he is a first-time offender, who had four young children, a housewife and an elderly mother to support, adding that he did not have much money.
Magistrate Chiang Kian Hong sentenced him to a RM2,500 fine for the first charge, an RM8,000 fine for the second charge and a RM23,000 fine for the third charge.
Penang Customs Department officer Supt Khairunnisa Ibrahim prosecuted. Por paid the fine.