GUA MUSANG: The discovery of Sasa Sobrie’s body provided the vital clue in the search for the other missing children.
OCPD Supt Saiful Bahri Abdullah said he was sure that all seven children had been together over the past 46 days and did not separate at all.
“Based on my experience, they will always look for rivers as a source of food and water.
“And when the pathologist confirmed that Sasa died as a result of drowning, it strengthened my hunch that the others would not be far from each other,” Supt Saiful Bahri told newsmen yesterday.
From the start of the search for the orang asli children on Aug 24, Supt Saiful Bahri said he had believed there was no foul play although there were calls for police to investigate possible abduction by human traffickers or organ syndicates.
Theories abounded, including one where the children had been taken by tenrog, orang asli lingo for orang bunian or supernatural beings of local folklore.
“From the start I ordered the search parties to focus on scouring the rivers.
“People going missing in the jungle here is the norm and usually there’s no criminal element to it,” said Supt Saiful Bahri.
He said the children could have been hit by a rush of water from the mountains during heavy rain on Sept 25, causing some of them to drown in Sungai Perias, which is now the focus of the search for the last two missing children.
At a breakfast meeting yesterday, Supt Saiful Bahri told reporters he had a hunch that some of the children might be found alive. As it turned out, two of them were.