KUALA LUMPUR: Ex-Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) bomb expert Taufik Abdul Halim (pic) is now with his family in Johor after being released from an Indonesian prison.
The 39-year-old was brought back from Jakarta on a commercial flight which arrived at the KL International Airport at 11.40pm on Wednesday.
He was whisked away by Bukit Aman personnel and later interrogated by the Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division.
“He appeared calm and was grateful to have come back to Malaysia. He was asked if he had repented from his previous acts,’’ said the source, who revealed that Taufik was able to return following a special arrangement with Indonesian authorities.
The source said Taufik, who spent 12 years in jail for attempting to blow up a shopping mall in Jakarta in 2001, was then taken to his hometown in Johor.
“Police will monitor him closely,’’ the source added.
The source said there was “special interest” in Taufik as he was also the brother-in-law of the FBI’s most wanted terrorist Zulkifli Abdul Khir, better known as Marwan.
Taufik was among 350 ex-JI members who were released from Indonesian prisons after being granted a pardon from President Joko Widodo.
Although there are no other Malaysians in the batch, Bukit Aman is on an alert to prevent any one of those released to enter the country.
On Thursday, Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said action would be taken against Taufik if he had committed crimes in Malaysia and assured that police would closely monitor him.
He said Malaysia would not be made use of as a base or transit point for terrorists.
Taufik, a Universiti Teknologi Mara graduate, gained notoriety following his involvement in Kumpulan Mujahideen Malaysia’s heist at Southern Bank in Petaling Jaya in 2001, with the stolen loot used to fund terrorist groups in Jakarta and Ambon.
He was also active in the
tabligh movement before being influenced by Marwan to become a militant. Taufik was also previously held under the ISA for two years.