BUKIT MERTAJAM: Eight men, including a chairman of two public-listed companies, have been charged at the Magistrate’s Court here with trafficking almost 5kg of methamphetamine.
Ooi Chieng Sim, 51, and Jackson Boh Khim Hean, 33, together with five Myanmar men and a China national were charged with trafficking 4,980g of the drugs at a warehouse at ATTA Global Group Bhd at the Perai Industrial Estate, Perai, on Jan 16.
Ooi is the chairman of two public listed companies, Heng Huat Resources Group Bhd (Heng Huat) and ATTA Global Group Bhd (ATTA). Ooi is also the fourth-largest shareholder of PBA Holdings Bhd, reports said. PBA is Penang’s water supply company.
The five Myanmar men are Aung Soe Thu, Soe Min Aung, Aung Kyaw Thu, Than Zaw Oo and Tun Ye, while the Chinese national was identified as Wang Yong.
They were charged under Section 39B(1)(a) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 for trafficking a dangerous drug, which carries a mandatory death penalty if convicted.
The charges were read out to the accused before magistrate Sri Pracha Nanthini Balabedha. No pleas were recorded as the case would be transferred to the High Court.
Ooi, Boh and Wang understood the charges but the five Myanmar nationals did not.
Sri Pracha then set Feb 18 for mention and to allow a Myanmar interpreter to read the charges.
On Tuesday, the police narcotics division at Bukit Aman seized assets worth over RM366 million linked to the suspects in the country’s largest cocaine bust at Butterworth port last September.
The follow-up operation on Jan 16, called Ops Eagle Diamond, was an attempt to cripple the drug syndicate by confiscating various assets linked to the suspects and their associates.
The seized assets included over RM143 million in company stocks, properties worth RM198 million, vehicles valued at RM2.7 million, and RM52,000 in jewellery.
The seizure was carried out under Section 3 and 4 of the Dangerous Drugs (Forfeiture of Property) Act 1988.