KUALA LUMPUR: A human trafficking syndicate believed to be smuggling Sri Lankan nationals to European countries has been crippled by police here.
The syndicate believed to be run by a Malaysian facilitator and two escorts allegedly hid its "clients" all over Kuala Lumpur before smuggling them out of the country.
Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador said they arrested the three Malaysians and eight Sri Lankans on May 27.
"We raided three locations including the Padang Besar Customs Immigration and Quarantine Complex and around the Klang Valley.
"The arrests were made while the syndicate was making preparations to smuggle a Sri Lankan child out from Padang Besar to Thailand using Malaysian travel documents.
"The child would then be sent to Europe illegally," he said in a statement on Saturday (June 8).
He said the three Malaysians have been remanded under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012.
"The eight Sri Lankans have been detained under the Immigration Act 1959/63.
"The arrests means we have crippled a syndicate which has been using Malaysia as a transit point in human trafficking," he said, adding that investigations revealed that the syndicate had been operating since 2018.
Abdul Hamid added that the syndicate had a vast international network spanning several countries including Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Europe.
He said they were now working on identifying and apprehending the remnant members of the syndicate.