BOMB PLOT FOILED
NINE men with links to Islamic State were arrested in a coordinated nationwide swoop after their plan to blow up a police station in Tapah was intercepted. The group had already sourced weapons and high explosives from Indonesia and Thailand. It is believ
RAHMAT KHAIRULRIJAL KUALA LUMPUR firstname.lastname@example.org
ATELEGRAM chat group called “Gagak Hitam” (Black Crows), used by Islamic State sympathisers nationwide, has led police to foil an audacious attempt to blow up the Tapah police station.
The militants had planned to bomb the police station in Perak using explosives that were to be smuggled in from southern Thailand and Indonesia.
The group, formed in the middle of last year, had started laying the groundwork for their plan by contacting IS followers in two neighbouring countries.
They had sought out counterparts in Indonesia and southern Thailand to get the explosives, but police got wind of the plans through the Telegram group.
It was learnt that the group wanted to get IEDs (improvised explosive devices) sourced from the two neighbouring countries to carry out their attack on the Tapah station.
Two suspects had already established close ties with several IS cells in Poso, Indonesia, but their plan was foiled following the arrest of two suspects in Tapah and Bidor in Perak on March 17.
The suspects are a 31-year-old restaurant worker and a 28-yearold veterinary shop owner.
Police believe the plan to bomb the police station was under the direct order of Malaysian IS leader in Syria, Muhammad Wanndy Mohamed Jedi.
The IS group in Malaysia had been directed to bomb the station as soon as possible.
It was learnt the Tapah police station was chosen for no other reason than because it was located close to the suspects’ hometown.
Members of the same Telegram group are also believed to have been responsible for the grenade attack at the Movida club in Puchong last year.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, in a statement yesterday, said nine IS militants had been arrested following a major swoop by the Bukit Aman Special Branch CounterTerrorism Division in five states between March 15 and Tuesday.
The suspects, aged between 26 and 46, were detained in operations in Selangor, Perak, Kedah, Kelantan and Johor.
Those arrested included a primary school teacher, a Puspakom technician, a security guard, a mechanic, a cybercafe worker and a resort worker.
“The teacher admitted to spreading the salafi jihadi ideology of the IS group via Facebook to recruit people to join the terrorist group,” Khalid said.
He said investigations revealed that the security guard was believed to have planned to sneak out of Malaysia to join IS in Syria or southern Philippines.
He said the last arrest was on March 21 and involved three men — from Kota Baru, Kelantan, and Segamat and Kota Tinggi, Johor.
The 46-year-old suspect from Kota Baru, a security guard, was believed to have been involved in recruiting IS members.
The 20-year-old suspect from Segamat worked at a cyber cafe, while the third suspect, also 20, from Kota Tinggi, worked at a resort.
Khalid said all suspects were detained on suspicion of committing crimes under Chapter VIA of the Penal Code (Act 574) and would be investigated under the Security Offences Act (Special Measures) 2012 (Act 747).
A man arrested in Tapah is among nine suspects nabbed between March 15 and Tuesday in five states on suspicion of links to the Islamic State.
A Puspakom technician was held in Klang recently. Page 1 pic: A suspect with links to the Islamic State was held in Kota Baru recently.