SHAH ALAM, May 30 — Three Malaysian Royal Customs Department personnel pleaded not guilty at the Sessions Court here today to a total of 24 charges of accepting bribes amounting to RM8,600.

Customs officer Mazuki A. Kadir, 54, and enforcement assistants Mohd Nasrizal Othman, 37, and Ahmad Samirrudin Muhammad Japri, 38, made the plea before Judge Awang Kerisnada Awang Mahmud after the charges were read out separately.

Mazuki faces ten charges of receiving RM2,900 in bribes between April 19, 2018, and April 4, 2023, while Mohd Nasrizal is charged with five counts of accepting RM1,150 between January 25, 2017, and June 1, 2019.

Ahmad Samirrudin, on the other hand, is accused of nine counts of receiving RM4,550 between May 31, 2017, and April 2, 2019.

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The offences were allegedly committed at several bank branches at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), KLIA 2, and Bandar Baru Salak Tinggi.

They are accused of receiving the bribes via online transfers from a 38-year-old cargo company owner to turn a blind eye to cargo inspections at KLIA Cargo.

They were charged under Section 17(a) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009, which carries a maximum 20-year prison term or a fine, upon conviction.

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Deputy public prosecutors Mohd ‘Afif Ali and Maziah Mohaide appeared for the prosecution, while Mohd Nasrizal and Mazuki were represented by lawyer Muhamad Aizat Fakri, and Ahmad Samiruddin was represented by lawyer Adhwa’ Afiqah Mohd Azmi.

The court set bail at RM8,000 for Mohd Nasrizal and RM10,000 each for Mazuki and Ahmad Samirrudin, with additional conditions of surrendering their passports, report monthly to the MACC, and refrain from tampering with witnesses.

The court also ordered their access to the Customs Department data be restricted until the conclusion of the trial. Mohd Nasrizal and Mazuki’s case mention was set for July 25, while Ahmad Samirrudin’s was scheduled on July 11.

On May 23, the MACC announced that 23 customs officers and personnel would be charged nationwide until June 6 after being detained during its Ops Samba 2.0 conducted from March 11 to 25, focusing on those at KLIA Cargo, successfully uncovering tax revenue losses of approximately RM2 billion. — Bernama