Boat hijacked off Penang


  • Nation
  • Thursday, 20 Feb 2003

BY BERNARD SEE

PENANG: Eight Indonesians, including seven armed with sub-machine guns, hijacked a RM150,000 trawler 17 nautical miles off Penang island on Tuesday. 

Fisherman Khor Joo Kau, 30, said he and his two crewmen, aged 18 and 42, were sleeping in their Tanjung Piandang-registered trawler when they were awakened by a violent jolt at about midnight. 

“I got off my bed and went up to check and noticed a man pointing a sub-machine gun at me. 

“My crewmen had also woken up and we were forced to squat at gunpoint,” he said in a telephone interview from Tanjung Piandang, Perak, yesterday. 

Khor said they were then directed to board the boat in which the hijackers arrived and the Indonesians then sped off in his boat with three days' catch worth RM8,000. 

“On board my vessel, which I purchased two years ago, were some computer equipment, RM1,000 in cash and jewellery worth RM500.” 

A northern region marine police spokesman said a vessel was deployed to tow back the Indonesian boat after they received a distress call at about 3am. 

He urged fishermen whose boats had been hijacked to co-operate with marine police and not give in to ransom demands. 

It is learnt there were fishermen paying up to RM50,000 to sea robbers for the return of their boats.  

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