Eight Customs officers were slapped with 28 separate charges of receiving bribery involving a total sum of RM34,400, at the Sessions Court today.
The lower and mid-level officers were accused of receiving the bribes in connection with the smuggling of alcohol between November 2011 and August 2014.
The lowest amount of bribes mentioned in the charge sheet was RM300 and the highest was RM11,000.
All the officers were charged under Section 16(a)(A) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 which provides for a jail sentence of not more than 20 years, or a fine of five times the bribe amount, or both, upon conviction.
The first six officers were charged before judge Rosbiahanin Arifin at a Kuala Lumpur sessions court, and all of them pleaded not guilty.
Lawyer Ridha Abdah Subri represented assistant enforcement officers Mahadir Mohamad, 37, and Kamarul Asmady, 37, and Senior Assistant Customs Director II Som Chit a/l Tiang, 48.
Counsel Mohd Fadly Hashim, meanwhile appeared for another Senior Assistant Customs Director II, Jamaludin Zamzam, 54.
Assistant enforcement officer Mohamed Rozlan, 57, was represented by lawyer Ahmad Nazri while another assistant enforcement officer, Sahbandi Abdul Manap, represented himself.
A bail of RM5000 per charge was imposed on all six of them with the bail amount ranging from RM5,000 to RM20,000.
Meanwhile, two assistant enforcement officers were charged before judge Allaudeen Ismail at another KL sessions court. Both Amran Ismail, 35, and Abdul Rahman Ahmad, 35, claimed trial.
Bail was set at RM5,000 for each offence with the bail amount ranging from a total of RM10,000 to RM25,000.
Abdul Rahman was represented by Ridha, and counsel Nurul Aeir Muhammad Harvian Kamar represented Amran.
All the accused were also ordered to surrender their passports to the court, and their cases were fixed for re-mention on Nov 10.
Meanwhile, at a Shah Alam sessions court, Mohamed Rozlan and Jamaluddin were once again charged with three other charges of allegedly receiving a total of RM3300 in bribes. Both pleaded not guilty.