Malaysia: Three vessels transporting logs seized by authorities

The Star 8 Mar 16;

MIRI: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has confiscated some 9,000 metric tonnes of timber logs and seized two ships and a barge off the coast of Miri on suspicion of illegal transportation of logs.

The agency has been carrying out surveillance operations 11 nautical miles in the South China Sea off Miri since March 4.

Late on Sunday, the patrol teams sprang into action and made the seizures, said its enforcement chief for Miri Admiral Abim Sungom yesterday.

“The barge with 1,844 logs weighing 9,000 metric tonnes have been seized along with the two ships.

“The ships may have contravened the law,” he said, adding that MMEA was probing whether they have valid permits to transport the logs.

A total of 17 crew members were also detained.

This is the second bust by the agency off the coast of Miri in the past two weeks.

On Feb 25, MMEA patrols busted an attempt to smuggle 2,386 logs on a barge 28km off Miri.

They seized a barge and a boat and arrested a local and three Indonesian crew members.

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