Eight officers, allegedly involved with a human trafficking syndicate, had their detention orders revoked after only a few months in Kamunting.

KUALA LUMPUR: Batu Kawan MP Kasthuri Patto wants to know how Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi plans on fighting corruption in football, as pledged, when he has still not come clean on the eight Immigration officers based at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), arrested by the Special Branch (SB) in a major coup in 2011. “They had been alleged to be involved with a human trafficking syndicate.”

The eight officers had their detention orders revoked after only a few months in Kamunting, added the MP. “What’s the real reason behind the revocation? Was there a lack of evidence to charge them? If yes, then who are the real perpetrators?”

A knee jerk proposal to replace border officers with the military will not improve public confidence especially with guilty officers walking free despite being allegedly corrupt, she charged. “Now that eight out of 10 law enforcement officers along the border have been found to be corrupt, having had a hand in the lucrative trade of flesh, guns and drugs, how many arrests have been made, how many officers have been charged?”
The most glaring statement, she added, was by a SB officer who warned “the enemy we have to fight is one that operates as an institution.”

“We are dealing with institutionalised corruption so deeply entrenched that expecting internal disciplining is like asking the chief crook to rat on his runners.”

Over a period of 10 years, she recalled, the SB found that 80 per cent of law enforcement and security officers along the country’s international border with Thailand were corrupt. “No serious action has been taken against those allegedly guilty of ‘trading’ the safety, security and most glaringly the sovereignty of the country through their direct involvement with syndicates smuggling drugs, weapons and humans.”

The report compiled by the SB and reported by the New Straits Times, she continued, was the result of 10 years of covert, deep-cover surveillance and intelligence gathering at border checkpoints and among different enforcement agencies including the Immigration Department, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA), the Anti-Smuggling Unit (UPP) and the police’s General Operations Force. “This is not just a matter of protecting our borders.”

“It’s a more serious matter of lawlessness among upholders of the law, particularly those who are supposed to carry the flag to defend and maintain national security.”

These reports have been submitted to the relevant agencies over the years, but as usual, the public has been left in the dark, she lamented. “What is the next course of action against those who are allegedly corrupt and those who have reportedly betrayed the country which entrusted them to protect our borders?”

“The monsters behind human trafficking rings, kingpins and drug lords must be brought to justice.”


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