SESCO Wins Power Theft Case against Cold Storage Warehouse Business

KUCHING, 25th AUGUST 2016, THURSDAY: The High Court in Kuching has delivered a judgement in favour of Syarikat SESCO Berhad (SESCO) in a power theft case involving a cold storage business located at Demak Laut Industrial Park.

In the judgment delivered on 16 August 2016, the Court ordered the business owner to pay a sum of RM200,406.60 to SESCO, in addition to interest and legal costs. 

The case was brought to Court by the warehouse owner who had applied for an injunction order to stop SESCO from discontinuing their electricity supply. This was dismissed by the High Court as there was strong evidence of power theft. The average monthly electricity consumption was deduced to be unrealistically low for a cold storage business and laboratory tests showed that the electricity meter had been tampered with. The warehouse owner was ordered to pay to SESCO loss of revenue incurred due to the meter tampering.

This case was highlighted in the media in February. As it was an ongoing case at the time, SESCO did not comment on the matter or respond publicly.

To-date, thirty-four meter tampering cases have been brought to court of which the outcome of twenty-four cases have been in favour of SESCO, while the other ten cases are still ongoing. Seven of the cases already decided have involved cold storage businesses. 

SESCO‚Äôs push against power theft was launched in 2009 through public awareness campaigns as well as a stronger monitoring, inspection and investigation process. 

The utility works closely with the authorities, relevant agencies and members of the public in doing so. Members of inspection teams include the Electricity Inspectorate Unit and the Police. 

Power theft offenders can be charged under Section 33 (5) of the Electricity Ordinance which carries a penalty of RM100,000.00 and/or five years imprisonment.