SINGAPORE - Yesterday night, Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers discovered a man hiding between the mattress and a row of cupboards behind the driver seat of a Malaysia-registered van departing from Singapore.
At about 10.15pm, the officers directed the vehicle for checks at the Tuas Checkpoint and physical inspection revealed a 25-year-old Bangladeshi hiding in the vehicle
The lone driver and his undeclared passenger were immediately placed under arrest.
Preliminary investigations revealed that the 37-year-old male Malaysian driver was promised $1, 000 to bring the immigration offender out of the country.
The driver had met up with the offender in Woodlands and instructed the latter to hide inside his van before proceeding to Tuas Checkpoint for departure.
Both the driver and the immigration offender are currently under investigation for the offences.
The vehicle used has been detained and is liable for forfeiture.
If found guilty of overstaying or illegal entry, offenders can be jailed for up to six months and caned a minimum of three strokes.
The penalty for illegal departure is a fine of up to $2,000, a jail term of up to six months, or both.
ICA said they have tightened security checks on passengers and vehicles at the checkpoints to prevent attempts to smuggle in undesirable persons, drugs, weapons, explosives and other contrabands.