Tuesday, October 26

Man claims trial in Kuching to trafficking five illegal immigrants

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Benedict is escorted by a policeman at the Kuching Court Complex. – Photo by Hafizah Abdul Hamid

KUCHING (Oct 13): A 29-year-old man claimed trial in the High Court here today to trafficking five illegal immigrants.

Benedict Jalai pleaded not guilty after a court interpreter read the charge – framed under Section 26J of the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Atipsom) Act 2007 – to him.

If convicted, he could face a maximum five years in jail, a fine of up to RM250,000, or both.

According to the charge, Benedict allegedly smuggled in and transported five Indonesian immigrants in a sports utility vehicle at Jalan Lundu-Sematan around 5.30am on June 29.

After hearing the submissions of the prosecution and defence, Judge Dr Alwi Abdul Wahab allowed the accused to be released on RM5,000 cash bail in two local sureties.

“The accused is also ordered to hand over his travel documents, apart from being ordered to report to the nearest police station once a month effective Nov 13, 2021,” Alwi said during the proceedings.

The court also set Nov 29 for case management.