MMEA chases off boat with illegal immigrants from Selangor waters

KLANG: There was high drama along coastal waters of Selangor during the wee hours of Tuesday (Oct 19) as a foreign vessel tried to sneak some 40 illegal immigrants into the state.

The Selangor Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) received a tip-off that a vessel had departed Tanjung Balai, Asahan, Sumatra heading for Selangor at 9pm on Monday.

"At about 12.20am (Tuesday) the MMEA's ocean monitoring system in Klang detected the vessel moving from Permatang Sedepa to Morib," said Selangor MMEA director Kapten Maritim Rosli Kassim in a statement.

Aided by a Navy vessel, an MMEA enforcement boat approached the vessel, KM Sinar Utama, at 2am on Tuesday.

"When ordered to stop, the skipper sped up the boat and attempted to escape.

"The two vessels flanked it and gave chase to prevent the boat and its 40 illegal immigrants from docking on the beach", said Kapt Rosli.

The chase went on for almost an hour and a half before the vessel left Malaysian waters.

"Preventing attempts of sneaking in illegal immigrants into the country via sea is a priority for MMEA," said Kapt Rosli, adding that the agency was conducting routine monitoring around the clock.

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