By Bernama | The Malaysian Reserve

JOHOR BAHRU, 16 Mar – Jumbo bags filled with soil contaminated with chemical waste were accummulated before being moved to the disposal site in the pollution incident at Sungai Kim Kim, close to Pasir Gudang, today. 350 jumbo bags and 350 metric tonnes of contaminated water were released into Sungai Kim Kim up until last night. — BERNAMA

The Sessions Court Judge in the case of the disposal of toxic waste into Sungai Kim Kim, Wan Mohd Norisham Wan Yaakob, today visited the site of the tyre processing factory in the Tanjung Langsat Industrial Area here, in connection to the incident last March.

Wan Mohd Norisham arrived at the factory at about 10 a.m. with several interested parties in the case, including Deputy Public Prosecutor (DPP) Muhammad Syafiq Mohd Ghazali, DPP for the Putrajaya Department of Environment (DOE) Nor Azura Jumuddin, and the first prosecution witness, Senior Control Officer for the DOE, Mohd Nazir Mansor, who is also the head of the Muar DOE branch.

Also present were counsel G.Subramaniam Nair who represented factory directors Wang Jing Chao and Yap Loke Liang, counsel S.Ratakrishna who represented the factory’s lorry driver N.Maridass and counsel Joshua Tay who represented another company director, Sim Wei Der.

The second prosecution witness, senior principal assistant director of the assessment and development section of the hazardous materials division in the DOE in Putrajaya, Azlan Ahmad, was also present.

Mohd Nazir gave the group a 45-minute briefing on the equipment used in the factory to process the recycled tyres.

They later headed to three other locations in the Pasir Gudang area where Maridass parked his vehicle and at Sungai Kim Kim which is the site for the disposal of scheduled waste of oil sludge.

The trial continues tomorrow in the presence of Wan Mohd Norisham in the Sessions Court here after hearing began yesterday.

Maridass, 35, was charged with disposing the scheduled waste, oil sludge, into Sungai Kim Kim, using a lorry and a palm oil semi-trailer, without the permission of the Director General of Environmental Quality.

Wang, 34, Yap, 36, and Sim, 50, were charged with collaborating with Maridass in disposing the scheduled waste into Sungai Kim Kim using the vehicles involved.

The four were charged with committing the offence between 12.01 a.m. and 1 a.m. on March 7 at the Sungai Kim Kim bridge-widening project site.

Maridass was charged under section 34B (1)(a) of the Environmental Quality Act 1974, punishable under section 34(B)(4) of the same Act, which carries a maximum jail term of five years and fine of RM500,000.

Wang, Yap and Sim were charged under section 34B (1)(a) of the Environmental Quality Act 1974, punishable under section 34(B)(3) of the same Act and read together with section 42 of the same Act, which also carries a maximum jail term of five years and a fine of RM500,000.

The three directors were also slapped with 15 charges each, under Rule 3(1) of the Environment Quality Regulations (Scheduled Wastes) 2005 and Environmental Quality Regulations (Clean Air) 2014.

They were accused of failing to conduct air quality monitoring, and failing to notify the authorities about the production of scheduled wastes.