TRAITORS IN THE FORCE

SIX­TEEN mem­bers of the po­lice force, in­clud­ing high-rank­ing of­fi­cers, have been ar­rested for ties to drug syn­di­cates over the past few days. They are be­ing in­ves­ti­gated un­der the Se­cu­rity Of­fences (Special Mea­sures) Act 2012. Among them are se­nior po­licem

New Straits Times - - Front Page - HARIZ MOHD KUALA LUMPUR harizm@nst.com.my

» RE­PORT BY HARIZ MOHD ON PAGE 2

FED­ERAL po­lice have, over the past few days, come swoop­ing down on some of their own who worked hand in glove with drug lords.

The New Straits Times was made to un­der­stand that 16 of them are in cus­tody and be­ing in­ves­ti­gated un­der the Se­cu­rity Of­fences (Special Mea­sures) Act 2012 for al­leged in­volve­ment in drug dis­tri­bu­tion syn­di­cates.

Sources told the NST that these po­lice­men, some in se­nior po­si­tions in the Nar­cotics De­part­ment, had al­legedly been “pro­tect­ing” drug syn­di­cates they were sup­posed to go af­ter.

In­spec­tor-Gen­eral of Po­lice Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar last night con­firmed the ar­rests, say­ing the op­er­a­tion was part of a mas­sive clean-up against cor­rupt prac­tices in the force.

Sources said the op­er­a­tion was trig­gered when their in­ves­ti­ga­tors, who were prob­ing drug dis­tri­bu­tion rings, picked up signs and gleaned in­for­ma­tion about “traitors” within the force who were on syn­di­cates’ pay­roll.

Among those caught in the drag­net was an of­fi­cer who wears the rank “Deputy Su­per­in­ten­dent” and an “In­spec­tor”.

“The Nar­cotics De­part­ment was car­ry­ing out a full-force swoop against drug syn­di­cates, dubbed Op Kabaddi, when in­ves­ti­ga­tions led po­lice to in­for­ma­tion about rogue cops who had been al­legedly pro­tect­ing the gangs.

“Based on these leads, fed­eral po­lice launched a special op­er­a­tion to iden­tify and hunt them,” said one of the sources.

An­other source told the NST that a special task force from the Fed­eral Po­lice Crim­i­nal In­ves­ti­ga­tion De­part­ment has be­gun round­ing up the way­ward po­lice­men from last week.

It is learnt that most of those ar­rested were at­tached to the Fed­eral Po­lice Nar­cotics De­part­ment.

Sources, who spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity as they were not au­tho­rised speak to the me­dia, de­clined to fur­nish fur­ther specifics of where and when the sus­pects were picked up.

“From in­for­ma­tion re­ceived, these po­lice­men had been on the take and were re­ceiv­ing monthly pay­ments from syn­di­cates.

“In ex­change, they let the syn­di­cates run their busi­ness ac­tiv­i­ties and flourish their drug trade with­out hav­ing to fear raids or ar­rests,” the source said, adding that based on in­tel­li­gence, drug syn­di­cates would think noth­ing of pay­ing tens of thou­sands of ring­git a month just to be kept un­der the au­thor­i­ties’ radar.

The NST was made to un­der­stand that the sus­pects had al­legedly come un­der the pay­roll of the no­to­ri­ous Gang 36. They had al­legedly pro­tected the gang, no­to­ri­ous for man­u­fac­tur­ing, smug­gling and dis­tribut­ing drugs. The gang’s main source of in­come is said to be from the dis­tri­bu­tion of metham­phetamine, a syn­thetic drug pop­u­lar among ad­dicts in the coun­try.

The NST was also made to un­der­stand that more would be ar­rested for sim­i­lar of­fences un­der the pre­ven­tive law usu­ally used against ter­ror sus­pects and those who are sus­pected of pos­ing a threat to na­tional se­cu­rity.

Sources said the special team tasked with nail­ing po­lice­men on the take are also ze­ro­ing in on sev­eral se­nior rank of­fi­cers who an­swer to syn­di­cates.

A tip-off that came to this news­pa­per sug­gested that one of them could be an of­fi­cer with the rank “As­sis­tant Com­mis­sioner”. An­other is a for­mer cop who re­tired with two stars. The NST, how­ever, has not been able to con­firm this.

Khalid said the special op­er­a­tion was part of ef­forts to flush out cor­rupt po­lice­men.

“Yes, I con­firm that we have started a special op­er­a­tion to clean up PDRM (Royal Malaysian Po­lice) of rogue cops.

“I have warned be­fore that po­lice are not go­ing to make com­pro­mises in our fight against crime. And we are def­i­nitely not go­ing to pro­tect any­one, in­clud­ing our own,” he said in a text mes­sage.

EX­CLU­SIVE

Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar

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