MMEA personnel spotted the tug and barge transferring logs to another vessel.

BINTULU (October 24): The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) yesterday arrested a tug and barge suspected of transferring logs without a permit about 3.7 nautical miles from Tanjung Batu.

MMEA Bintulu Director Captain (Maritime) Mohd Khairol Anuar Saad said in a statement that MMEA assets who were on routine patrol spotted the tug and barge transferring logs to another vessel around 10.30am.

He said the tug and barge were manned by six crew members, including the skipper, aged 22 to 54.

“Two crew members including a local skipper and an Indonesian were detained on the tug, while a local crew member and two Indonesians were detained on the barge,” it added.

He said the detained Indonesian crew members had passports and permits to work on both vessels.

“The two vessels have been arrested for allegedly carrying out ship-to-ship cargo transfer activities without permission from the Royal Malaysian Customs Department.”

He said the case was being investigated under the Customs Act 1967, which provides for a fine and imprisonment if convicted.