Police arrested three foreigners and a local and seized RM121,520 worth of illicit cigarettes in two raids in the Sabah Baru area here yesterday.

LAHAD DATU: Police arrested three foreigners and a local and seized RM121,520 worth of illicit cigarettes in two raids in the Sabah Baru area here yesterday.

Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) commander Datuk Hazani Ghazali said a team from the marine police intelligence unit which launched an operation based on a public tip-off made the first arrests.

“Based on surveillance in the area, they saw four men transporting items covered in black packaging in a four wheel drive (4WD) vehicle. During the raid, one suspect escaped but the other three were arrested,” he said in a statement today.

Upon inspection, the police team found 6,920 illicit cigarette packs in black plastic bags hidden in the vehicle.

In the second operation in the same area, the police team found another man, also in a 4WD, acting suspiciously as he drove into a commercial area.

“Upon Inspection, we found the man carrying 16,000 cigarette packs worth nearly RM80,000 hidden in the back seat and the bed of the vehicle,” said Hazani.

All four suspects, aged between 27 and 36, as well as the seized items, including the two vehicles, have been brought to the marine police base for further investigation and documentation.

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