KUALA LUMPUR: All 47 Malaysians detained at the Banteay Meanchey Provincial Prison have been released after several rounds of discussions between the Cambodian and Malaysian governments.
As at 10pm yesterday, it is understood that they were freed and having dinner with Julau MP Larry Sng, who has gone to Cambodia to facilitate their release.
International Non-Governmental Organisation head Datuk Dr Mustapha Ahmad Marican said Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen approved the release after finding that they were duped by a job agency syndicate.
“According to the Cambodian Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, Oknha Datuk Dr Othsman Hassan, they have studied and found that all the Malaysian detainees had been cheated by the syndicate.
“They also took into account the long-standing diplomatic ties between the two nations,” he told Bernama when contacted here.
Wisma Putra confirmed last Thursday the detention of the 47 Malaysians in Cambodia since Dec 11 last year on charges of cheating, and initiating and carrying out illegal online gambling activities.
Dr Mustapha said besides Wisma Putra, other leaders and representatives from Sarawak had also been in Cambodia over the past few days to discuss ways to free the detainees.
A detainee’s mother, Zunita Sedini, had earlier claimed that her son Yusof Islam and the other 46 Malaysians had been promised jobs with lucrative salaries of up to US$1,500 (about RM6,100).
She said they only found out that it was a scam when they arrived in Cambodia.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail later tweeted her thanks to the Cambodian government for releasing the Malaysians.