Customs Act 1967 [Act 235]

113 Search of persons arriving in Malaysia   cite [+]

Any person landing, or being about to land, or having recently landed, from any vessel or aircraft, or leaving any vessel or aircraft in territorial waters, whether for the purpose of landing or otherwise, or entering or having recently entered Malaysia by road or railway shall, on demand by any proper officer of customs either permit his person, goods and baggage to be searched by such officer, or together with such goods and baggage accompany such officer to a customs office or police station and there permit his person, goods and baggage to be searched by an officer of customs:

Provided that-

(a) any person who requests that his person be searched in the presence of a senior officer of customs shall not be searched except in the presence of and under the supervision of such officer, but such person may be detained until the arrival of such officer, or taken to any customs office or police station where such officer may be found;

(b) the goods and baggage of any person who requests to be present when they are searched and so presents himself within a reasonable time shall not be searched except in his presence;

(c) no female shall be searched except by another female with strict regard to decency.

114 Seizure of goods the subject of an offence   cite [+]

(1) All goods in respect of which there has been, or there is, reasonable cause to suspect that there has been committed any offence against this Act or any regulation made thereunder, or any breach of any of the provisions of this Act or of any regulation made thereunder or of any restriction or condition subject to or upon which any licence or permit has been granted, together with any receptacle, package, conveyance, vessel not exceeding two hundred tons nett registered tonnage, or aircraft other than an aircraft engaged in international carriage, in which the same may have been found or which has been used in connection with such offence or breach, and any books or documents which may reasonably be believed to have a bearing on the case, may be seized by any officer of customs in any place either on land or in territorial waters.

(2) All such goods and such receptacles, packages, conveyances, vessels or aircraft shall, as soon as conveniently may be, be delivered into the care of a proper officer of customs whose duty it is to receive the same.

(3) Whenever any goods, conveyances, vessels or aircraft are seized under this Act, the seizing officer shall forthwith give notice in writing of such seizure and the grounds thereof to the owner of such goods, if known, either by delivering such notice to him personally or by post at his place of abode, if known:

Provided that such notice shall not be required to be given where such seizure is made on the person, or in the presence of the offender or the owner or his agent, or in the case of a vessel or an aircraft, in the presence of the master or pilot, as the case may be.

(4) This section relating to the seizure of goods shall apply to all the contents of any package or receptacle in which the same are found and to any article used to conceal the same.

(5) This section relating to the seizure of any vessel or aircraft shall apply also to the tackle, equipment and furnishing of such vessel or aircraft.

(6) This section relating to the seizure of conveyances shall apply to all equipment thereof and to any animal by which the same is drawn.

115 Return or disposal of movable property   cite [+]

(1) Where any movable property has been seized under this Act, a senior officer of customs may, at his discretion-

(a) temporarily return the movable property to the owner thereof or to the person from whose possession, custody or control it was seized, or to such person as a senior officer of customs may consider entitled thereto, subject to such terms and conditions as a senior officer of customs may impose, and, subject, in any case, to sufficient security being furnished to the satisfaction of a senior officer of customs that the movable property shall be surrendered to a senior officer of customs on demand being made by a senior officer of customs and that the said terms and conditions, if any, shall be complied with; or

(b) return the movable property to the owner thereof or to the person from whose possession, custody or control it was seized, or to such person as a senior officer of customs may consider entitled thereto, with liberty for the person to whom the movable property is so returned to dispose of the same, such return being subject to security being furnished to the satisfaction of a senior officer of customs in an amount not less than an amount which, in the opinion of a senior officer of customs, represents-

(i) for property other than dutiable or uncustomed goods, its open market value, and for dutiable or uncustomed goods, their value, on the date on which the property or goods are so returned;

(ii) the customs duty payable in respect thereof; and

(iii) any tax payable in respect thereof under any written law,

for the payment of the amount so secured to the Director General in the event of the court making an order for the forfeiture of such amount under subsection 127(1A) or 128(4), or in the event of such amount being forfeited under section 131, as the case may be; or

(c) sell or destroy the movable property, as appropriate in the circumstances, where it is a living creature or where, in the opinion of a senior officer of customs, it is of a perishable or dangerous nature or likely to speedily deteriorate in quality or value, and where it is so sold, he shall hold the proceeds of sale to abide the result of any prosecution or claim, or a forfeiture under section 131, as the case may be.


(2) Any person who-

(a) fails to surrender on demand to a senior officer of customs the movable property temporarily returned to him under paragraph (1)(a); or

(b) fails to comply with or contravenes any of the terms or conditions imposed under paragraph (1)(a),


shall be guilty of an offence and shall, on conviction, be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to a fine not exceeding ten thousand ringgit or to both.

(3) The criminal liability of any person under subsection (2) shall be in addition to any other liability that the said person or any other person may incur under the terms and conditions relating to the return of the movable property under paragraph (1)(a).

(4) The provisions of subsection (2) shall not apply to such person, if any, who is the guarantor or surety of the person to whom the property is returned under paragraph (1)(a).

(5) The Minister may, from time to time, either generally or in any particular case or class of cases, give such directions to the Director General as he may deem necessary or expedient with regard to the exercise of the powers conferred on a senior officer of customs under subsection (1).

(6) No person shall be entitled to maintain any action on account of any act done or any decision taken by or on behalf of the Minister or by or on behalf of a senior officer of customs under this section, and no court shall have any jurisdiction to entertain any such action.

(7) For the purpose of this section "movable property" includes any description of movable property whatsoever seized under this Act.

115A Production of a certificate of an analyst, or a senior officer of customs, or a person authorized by the Minister   cite [+]

(1) In any proceedings in respect of any offence against this Act or any regulation made thereunder in which the existence, description, classification, composition, quantity, quality or value of, or any other matter in relation to, any movable property returned under paragraph 115(1)(a) or (b) or sold or destroyed under paragraph 115(1)(c), is in question, any document produced by the prosecution purporting to be a certificate in respect of any such matter given and signed by-

(a) an "analyst" within the meaning of subsection 121(5); or

(b) a senior officer of customs; or

(c) any person, regardless whether or not he is a public officer, authorized by or on behalf of the Minister, either generally or in any particular case, for the purposes of this section,


shall be admissible in evidence and its conclusiveness shall not be challenged on the ground that the movable property in respect of which the certificate is given has not been produced before the court either in part or in entirety, and it shall be evidence of its contents, including the facts stated therein, without proof of the signature to such certificate.

(2) The provisions of this section shall apply notwithstanding anything contained in any other written law or rule of evidence to the contrary.

116 Powers of arrest   cite [+]

(1) Any officer of customs may arrest without warrant-

(a) any person found committing or attempting to commit, or employing or aiding any person to commit, or abetting the commission of, an offence against this Act or any regulation made thereunder;

(b) any person whom he may reasonably suspect to have in his possession any uncustomed or prohibited goods or any goods liable to seizure under this Act;

(c) any person against whom a reasonable suspicion exists that he has been guilty of an offence against this Act or any regulation made thereunder,


and may search or cause to be searched, any person so arrested:

Provided that no female shall be searched except by another female with strict regard to decency.

(2) Every person so arrested shall be taken to a police station or may be detained in the custody of the proper officer of customs.

(3) The proper officer of customs may take or cause to be taken photographs and finger and thumb impressions of any person charged with an offence under this Act or any regulation made thereunder.

(4) If any person liable to arrest under this Act is not arrested at the time of committing the offence for which he is so liable, or after arrest makes his escape, he may at any time afterwards be arrested and be dealt with as if he had been arrested at the time of committing such offence.

(5) Every person so arrested may be released from custody-

(a) on his depositing such reasonable sum of money as the proper officer of customs may require;

(b) on his executing a bond, with such surety or sureties, as the proper officer of customs may require; or

(c) on his depositing such reasonable sum of money as the proper officer of customs may require and his executing a bond, with such surety or sureties, as the proper officer of customs may require.


(6) Any person who has been released from custody under subsection (5) may be arrested without warrant by any officer of customs-

(a) if such officer has reasonable grounds for believing that any condition on or subject to which such person was released or otherwise admitted to bail has been or is likely to be breached; or

(b) on being notified in writing by the surety of such person that such person is likely to breach any condition on or subject to which such person was released and that the surety wishes to be relieved of his obligation as surety.

116A Power to examine persons   cite [+]

(1) A senior officer of customs investigating an offence
under this Act may-

(a) order any person who appears to be acquainted with the facts and circumstances of the case to attend before him for the purpose of being examined orally in relation to any matter which may, in his opinion, assist in the investigation into the offence; or

(b) order any person to produce before him any book, document or any certified copy of it, or any other article which may, in his opinion, assist in the investigation into the offence.


(2) Paragraph (1)(b) shall not apply to banker's books.

(3) A person to whom an order under paragraph (1)(a) has been given shall-

(a) attend in accordance with the terms of the order to be examined, and shall continue to attend from day to day where so directed until the examination is completed; and

(b) during such examination, be bound to answer all questions relating to the case put to him and shall be legally bound to state the truth, whether or not such answer is made wholly or partly in answer to questions but he may refuse to answer any question the answer to which would have a tendency to expose him to a criminal charge or penalty or forfeiture.


(4) A person to whom an order has been given under paragraph (1)(b) shall not conceal, destroy, alter, remove from Malaysia, or deal with, expend, or dispose of, any book, document or article specified in the order, or alter or deface any entry in any such book or document, or cause such act to be done, or assist or conspire to do such act.

(5) A person to whom an order is given under subsection (1) shall comply with such order and with the requirements of subsections (3) and (4) notwithstanding any written law to the contrary.

(6) A statement made by any person in the course of investigation under this Act whether or not a caution has been administered to him under subsection 116B(3) shall be recorded in writing by the senior officer of customs examining him and the statement so recorded shall be read to and signed by the person, and where such person refuses to sign the record, the senior officer of customs shall endorse on it under his hand the fact of such refusal and the reason for it, if any, stated by the person examined.

(7) The record of an examination made in the course of an investigation under this Act or any book, document or article produced under paragraph (1)(b) or otherwise in the course of an examination under paragraph (1)(a), shall, notwithstanding any written law to the contrary, be admissible in evidence in any proceedings under this Act in any court-

(a) for offence under this Act; or

(b) for the forfeiture of property pursuant to section 127, 128 or 131,


regardless whether such proceedings are against the person who was examined, or who produced the book, document or article, or against any other person.

116B Admissibility of statements in evidence   cite [+]

(1) In any trial or inquiry by a court into an offence under this Act, any statement, whether the statement amounts to a confession or not or whether it is oral or in writing, made at anytime, whether before or after the person is charged and whether in the course of an investigation under this Act or not, and whether or not wholly or partly in answers to questions, by an accused person to or in the hearing of any officer of customs, and whether or not interpreted to him by any other officer of customs or any other person, shall, notwithstanding any written law to the contrary, be admissible at his trial in evidence and, if that person tenders himself as a witness, any such statement may be used in cross-examination and for the purpose of impeaching his credit.

(2) No statement made under subsection (1) shall be admissible or used in cross-examination or for the purpose of impeaching the credit of the person making the statement if the making of the statement appears to the court to have been caused by any inducement, threat or promise having reference to the charge against the person, proceeding from a person in authority and sufficient in the opinion of the court to give that person grounds which would appear to him reasonable for supposing that by making it he would gain any advantage or avoid any evil of a temporal nature in reference to the proceedings against him.

(3) Where any person is arrested for an offence under this Act, he shall be cautioned in the following words or words to the like effect:

"It is my duty to warn you that you are not obliged to say anything or to answer any question, but anything you say, whether in answer to a question or not, may be given in evidence".

(4) A statement made by any person accused of an offence under this Act made before there is time to caution him shall not be rendered inadmissible in evidence merely by reason of no such caution having been administered if it has been administered as soon as possible.

(5) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any written law, a person accused of an offence under this Act to which subsection (1) applies, shall not be bound to answer any question relating to the case after any caution referred to in subsection (3) has been administered to him.

116C Procedure where investigation cannot be completed within twenty-four hours   cite [+]

(1) Whenever any person is arrested and detained in custody and it appears that the investigation cannot be completed within a period of twenty-four hours and there are grounds for believing that the accusation or information is well founded, the senior officer of customs making the investigation under this Act shall immediately transmit to a Magistrate a copy of the entries in the diary prescribed under section 116D relating to the case and shall at the same time produce such person before the Magistrate.

(2) The Magistrate before whom a person is produced under this section may, whether he has or has no jurisdiction to try the case, from time to time, authorize the detention of such person in such custody as the Magistrate considers fit for a term not exceeding fifteen days in the whole.

(3) If the Magistrate has no jurisdiction to try the case and considers further detention unnecessary, he may order such person to be produced before a Magistrate having such jurisdiction or, if the case is triable only by the High Court, before himself or another Magistrate having jurisdiction with a view to transmitting the case for trial by the High Court.

(4) A magistrate authorizing detention under this section shall record his reasons for so doing.

116D Diary of proceedings in investigation   cite [+]

(1) Every officer of customs making an investigation under this Act shall day by day enter his proceedings in the investigation in a diary setting forth-

(a) the time at which the order, if any, for investigation reached him;

(b) the time at which he began and closed the investigation;

(c) the place or places visited by him; and

(d) a statement of the circumstances ascertained through his investigation.


(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Evidence Act 1950, an accused person shall not be entitled, either before or in the course of any proceedings under this Act, to call for or inspect any such diary:

Provided that if the officer of customs who has made the investigation refers to the diary for the purposes of section 159 or 160 of the Evidence Act 1950, such entries only as the officer has referred to shall be shown to the accused, and the court shall at the request of the officer cause any other entries to be concealed from view or obliterated.


Important Notice: Legislation from this website is not a copy of the Gazette printed by the Government Printer, Percetakan Nasional Malaysia Berhad, for the purposes of section 61 of the Interpretation Acts 1948 and 1967 [Act 388] and does not constitute prima facie evidence of the contents of the Gazette by virtue of the section.

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