KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said 12 police officers had been arrested since early last year over their alleged involvement in human trafficking in the country.
Wan Junaidi told Parliament that police arrested four suspects, while the remaining eight were made by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission through several operations carried out since January last year.
He also gave an assurance that the authorities would ensure a thorough and comprehensive investigation into the discovery of camps of mass graves and human trafficking activities in the country, widening the scope of their investigations to include even the forest rangers.
Wan Junaidi added the police, after receiving intelligence on the attempts to smuggle migrants into the country, had organised several special operations, including Ops Pintas, that saw over 290 illegal immigrants and 43 syndicate members arrested.
He also said that the authorities had trouble locating the camps earlier as there was “absolutely no indication” of them even existing in the country as these camps were located in remote areas, atop a hill that was too steep to access on the country’s side but easier to do so through Thailand.
It is not easy to access the hill on Malaysia’s side and it takes three hours to reach on foot, Junaidi said.
The Home Ministry had initially denied the existence of human trafficking camps as its secretary-general Datuk Alwi Ibrahim said that police investigations showed no sign of them.
However,last week, 139 graves believed to contain bodies of human trafficking victims from Myanmar and Bangladesh were found in
Perlis, along the border with Thailand.
Source: The Straits Times