MELAKA: Three illegal landing points used by foreigners have been discovered in Melaka, and authorities believe they are part of newly opened routes to cater to the migrants’ rush home for Hari Raya.
The new locations are at the beachfront of Terendak Military Camp in Sungai Udang, a football field near Tanjung Bidara Beach Resort and the fisherman base camp in Pangkalan Balik Batu leading to the Terendak Camp, said fishermen association leaders who spoke on condition of anonymity.
They claimed there had been two attempts to smuggle illegal immigrants into Malaysian shores at these nautical points during Ramadan.
Most of them were Rohingya, Bangladeshis and Indonesians.
“Fishermen had been complaining that illegal activities were flourishing along our nautical border and I found that laluan tikus (hidden trails) were still active,” said Melaka Agriculture, Agro-based, Entrepreneur Development and Cooperative Committee chairman Norhizam Hassan Baktee.
He said earlier transit points at Lereh, Dataran Satu Malaysia, Pantai Kundur and the Klebang river estuary were now inactive due to frequent operations by the authorities. “I had lodged a police report last year after receiving news that the Tanjung Keling jetty was the main point of entry of illegal immigrants.
“Bangladeshis first entered Indonesia as tourists and made their illegal journey here through the sea to seek employment, while the Rohingya were mostly refugees,” Norhizam said, adding that it was vital for locals to inform authorities about illegal activities.
Melaka Marine Police commanding officer Asst Supt Steel Anak Entai said his team had intensified surveillance and patrols along the maritime border in anticipation of the exodus of illegal immigrants during the upcoming festive season.
The patrols, he added, were focused along the beachfront and esplanades.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency Melaka and Negri Sembilan director Captain Amran Daud said six cases involving illegals had been recorded this year.In December, The Star reported that an abandoned bungalow at Lereh had been turned into a temporary shelter for illegals upon arriving at Melaka.
Marine police also revealed a ledger with records of payments made
by foreigners to enter the country.It also detailed routes to and from Indonesia, indicating that those exiting Malaysia without documents also used the syndicate’s service while limousine drivers ferried the illegals at a fare of RM800 each to Kuala Lumpur, where they were allegedly handed over to the mastermind of the syndicate.
Melaka police chief Deputy Comm Datuk Raja Shahrom Raja Abdullah said his team had learned that locals worked closely with the human trafficking and smuggling syndicate.
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