Contraband seller facing jailtime found dead

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GEORGE TOWN: The man who jumped off the Second Penang Bridge on Wednesday after being told that he might be jailed for selling contraband cigarettes, was found dead by fishermen this morning after a two-day search.

Sundry shop owner Mohd Shukri, 38, was found floating in the sea, one nautical mile away from Batu Maung, where he was believed to have jumped.

Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency operations commander PBK II Mazli A Mutalib said Shukri’s remains were sent to the Sungai Bakap Hospital for a post-mortem.

Mazli said the rescue team had mounted an aerial and sea search after Shukri abandoned his motorcycle on KM11 of the bridge heading to the island, and jumped to his death.

He left a note on his bike, listing his MyKad number and details of his next of kin.

Shukri, from Tasek Gelugor, Butterworth, had also written a bitter note on Facebook condemning the government and the authorities for making him pay “thousands of ringgit” in bail and fines.

He said the decision to take his life was after the Customs Department took him to court for selling RM360 worth of “cheap cigarettes”, an offence that could have also seen him being jailed.

He said in his FB post that he was arrested twice, once in 2012, when he was caught with RM160 worth of cigarettes, and again in February when he was caught with RM200 worth of cigarettes.

“Yes, I agree what I did was wrong, but the punishment is not befitting the crime.

“Here we have government directors who stole millions and are getting away on bail (but I could not).

“Whatever that is happening to me is due to the evil government of the day. I am just a small-time sundry shop owner.”

Shukri had hoped his “sacrifice” would enable small-time traders to escape being charged with minor offences.

“I am sorry, I cannot be imprisoned for this and I have do this,” his status read.

His friend shared his note on WhatsApp which has since gone viral.

Man leaves ‘suicide note’ on FB and jumps off Penang bridge