Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer al­lowed in I.S. mil­i­tants

Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer al­legedly al­lowed three mil­i­tants into coun­try

New Straits Times - - Front Page - HARIZ MOHD AND TEOH PEI YING news@nst.com.my

THE woman al­legedly took bribes from the mil­i­tants and other for­eign­ers who sought to en­ter Sabah with ei­ther coun­ter­feit or no doc­u­ments. She was among 7 peo­ple ar­rested for pos­si­ble ties with IS.

AS an Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer, she was re­spon­si­ble in en­sur­ing no sub­ver­sive el­e­ments en­tered or left the coun­try.

How­ever, the 31-year-old’s lust for money proved more pow­er­ful than her sense of duty.

She is be­lieved to have al­lowed il­le­gal im­mi­grants, in­clud­ing three Is­lamic State (IS) mil­i­tants, en­tered into the coun­try via the San­dakan Air­port in Sabah.

Sources said these mil­i­tants, en­tered Sabah to join ter­ror­ists in the Philip­pines.

“The sus­pect had been re­ceiv­ing bribes to fa­cil­i­tate the en­try of il­le­gals into Malaysia.

“Those who did not have valid travel doc­u­ments would go to the counter she was man­ning.

“For a sum of money, she would al­low them en­try even if they were us­ing fake doc­u­ments, or did not pos­sess any travel doc­u­ment,” said the sources.

How­ever, the sources de­clined to re­veal how much she charged for each per­son and how long she had been do­ing it, say­ing that in­ves­ti­ga­tions were on­go­ing.

It is learnt that po­lice were in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether she had any ties to IS.

The Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer was among seven peo­ple de­tained be­tween March 8 and Sun­day for pos­si­ble ties to IS.

In­spec­tor-Gen­eral of Po­lice Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said two other sus­pects — a Filipino woman, 53, and a Filipino man, 40 — were nabbed in San­dakan on March 9.

He said the fe­male sus­pect was a per­ma­nent res­i­dent (PR) sta­tus holder and sold ferry tick­ets for a liv­ing, while the man was a labourer.

The duo, he said, were picked up for al­legedly fa­cil­i­tat­ing the travel of three In­done­sian IS mem­bers to the Philip­pines through Sabah, the same three whom the Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer was al­leged to have helped.

Khalid said two Filipino men, aged 18 and 27, were ar­rested in Kota Kin­a­balu on March 8, adding that the older man held PR sta­tus.

“The per­ma­nent res­i­dent is sus­pected to be ac­tive in gath­er­ing funds for two Malaysian IS mem­bers in the south­ern Philip­pines, Dr Mah­mud Ah­mad and Mo­hamad Jo­raimee Awang Raimee.

“The other Filipino was iden­ti­fied as an IS mem­ber, who had pledged al­le­giance to Is­nilon Hapi­lon, a known Abu Sayyaf group se­nior leader in Basi­lan and chief of the IS cell in the south­ern Philip­pines.”

It is learnt that po­lice were try­ing to de­ter­mine if the 18-yearold had any links to kid­nap-for­ran­som ac­tiv­i­ties in Sabah wa­ters, one of the main sources of in­come for Abu Sayyaf ter­ror­ists.

Khalid said a 36-year-old car me­chanic, also a Filipino, was nabbed in San­dakan on March 9 for mak­ing plans to join IS in Syria.

“The last sus­pect, a Malaysian, 36, was ar­rested at the Kuala Lumpur In­ter­na­tional Air­port on Sun­day.

“The sus­pect, who was a med­i­cal as­sis­tant at Jer­an­tut Hospi­tal in Pa­hang, had left Malaysia for Is­tan­bul in Oc­to­ber.

“He planned to join IS ter­ror­ists in Syria with the help of In­done­sian IS mem­ber Abu Fateh, but failed when he and sev­eral In­done­sians were nabbed by Turk­ish au­thor­i­ties.”

The 36-year-old was de­tained fol­low­ing his de­por­ta­tion from Turkey.

Khalid said all the sus­pects were de­tained on sus­pi­cion of com­mit­ting of­fences un­der Chap­ter VI A of the Pe­nal Code, and were be­ing in­ves­ti­gated ac­cord­ing to pro­ce­dures un­der the Se­cu­rity Of­fences (Spe­cial Mea­sures) Act 2012.

Page 1 pic: The Im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cer be­ing taken away by a po­lice of­fi­cer.

PIX COUR­TESY OF PO­LICE

(Top and bot­tom) Two of the sus­pects be­ing de­tained by po­lice.

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