BINTULU: A vessel owner and his staff were each sentenced to one year imprisonment and fined RM1.4 million in default of four months in jail for possessing 146 pangolins which are endangered and protected animals, without a license.
Sessions Court Judge Norhamizah Shaiffuddin found the accused persons, Tan Choon How and Kelvin Por Seong Wooi guilty as charged.
They were convicted under Section 37 (2) (b), which was read together with Section 29 (2) of the Wildlife Protection Ordinance 1998.
They committed the offence on a vessel located at three nautical miles off the coast of Bintulu, at around 7.10am on April 5, 2018. The vessel was intercepted by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
The same court, however, discharged and acquitted another two accused persons namely, Anoop Pathak who is an Indian national and, Do Doon Lai, a Vietnamese.
The judge said they had managed to raise reasonable doubts against the prosecution’s case.
Legal officers Mohamad Muhaimin and Ronald Felix Hardin of the State Attorney General office prosecuted the case while Tan, Por and Do were represented by counsel Hii Chee Wung.
Anoop was represented by counsels Satinder Singh, Kalveet Singh and Mohd Izayyeem Azim who were appointed by the Indian High Commission.