KUALA LUMPUR: The Royal Malaysian Customs said that between January and Aug 9 this year, the department had seized RM4 million worth of smuggled firecrackers involving unpaid duties of RM2.18 million in 161 cases.
Last year, 309 cases were recorded with the contraband seized worth RM7.805 million, and unpaid duties amounting to RM5.073 million.
As for 2010, 326 cases were recorded with items worth RM11.115 million and unpaid duties of RM7.225 million seized in various operations.
Among the seized firecrackers this year were Dragon eggs, Sunset, Jumbo power, Magic shot, Moon travellers, City light, Shot cake 138s assorted, Happy boom ycot, 30 shot dast, 28 shot, 138 shot and Shun lee hung.
In Sibu, contraband firecrackers worth RM387,189 with unpaid duties of RM251,672 were seized.
These items were declared as other goods and smuggled in via a container.
In Penang, firecrackers smuggled using the same modus operandi and valued at RM451,100 with unpaid duties of RM293,215 were confiscated.
Two people were also arrested after an attempt to smuggle the contraband from neighbouring countries was foiled by the Customs.
The contraband was worth RM201,660 with unpaid duties amounting to RM131,079.
In Johor, contraband firecrackers stored in a container and worth RM623,365 with unpaid duties of RM405,187 were seized.
At Pengkalan Kubor in Kelantan, smuggled firecrackers from neighbouring countries worth RM201,660 with unpaid duties of RM131,079 were seized.
The sale of firecrackers was banned in 1991 under the Explosives Act 1957. Possession of firecrackers without a legal permit will be investigated under Section 8 of the Explosives Act 1957.
Under the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 2008, only pop-pop and happy boom firecrackers are allowed to be sold.
The import of fireworks without a police permit was banned under the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 2008.
These statistics were issued by the Customs Department following our report on Aug 14 about fireworks traders doing a booming business. By Sarah Rahim