MALACCA: Three cooks here who were denied entry to New Zealand for a holiday and claimed harsh treatment have lodged a protest with Wisma Putra.
The three Liew Eng Teck, 48, from Malim, Tan Teck Hing, 27, from Taman Bukit Katil and How Ah Wan, 33, from Taman Sri Duyong, were refused entry to New Zealand on July 19 and had sought help from Durian Daun assemblyman Betty Chew to make the protest yesterday.
The three claimed that they were strip-searched, handcuffed and kept in a lock-up before they were deported.
In their protest letter, Chew said the three stressed that no illegal substances and prohibited items were found on them and they were not involved in any illegal triad activities.
She said the New Zealand government had every right to bar foreigners from entering its country but such rights did not permit its authorities to treat the cooks like criminals.
In his reply to Chew, New Zealand High Commissioner Geoff Randal said the immigration service advised that the three be refused entry as it was not confident that they intended to abide by the conditions of a visitors permit.
Randal said as they were unable to return to Malaysia until the following day, the three men were placed under overnight police custody until they could board the next available flight to Malaysia.
We regret that Liew, Tan and How felt that they were unfairly treated while awaiting their return flight, he said.
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