No compromise in weeding out corrupt officers, says Immigration DG

PUTRAJAYA: The Immigration Department will cooperate fully with all relevant agencies on investigations into its own enforcement officers who were arrested for allegedly conspiring with a syndicate to smuggle undocumented migrants from the Phillipines to Peninsular Malaysia.

Its director-general Datuk Ruslin Jusoh confirmed that several personnel were arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) during the Ops Lancar in Tawau last week.

"I want to emphasise that we will not compromise on this issue and will give full cooperation to the relevant parties.

"We will take strict action including dismissing those involved if they are found guilty," he told reporters at the Immigration Department Intelligence and Operations Division Office here on Thursday (March 30).

Ruslin said as one of the enforcement agencies responsible for guarding the border, the issue of integrity among officers was important.

"The task of guarding the national border has been entrusted to us.

"Therefore, I stress to every officer to obey the rules.

"It is not fair for me to point the finger at all Immigration officers (regarding the issue of violation of instructions) when only a few of them are naughty (nakal)," he said, adding that if there were clear violations of instructions, they would not hesitate to take strict action.

It was reported on March 24 that graft busters had crippled a syndicate comprising five enforcement officers that had been providing a “service” that enabled undocumented migrants to travel using someone else’s MyKad.

The MACC uncovered the ruse by the group, which had been operating from Sabah’s east coast Tawau district.

So far, nine people, including the enforcement officers, had been arrested under the agency’s operation dubbed “Op Lancar”.

Tawau Magistrate’s Court Leona Dominic Mojiliu on Friday (March 24) issued a six-day remand order for the nine suspects until March 29, following an application by the MACC.

It is learnt that the five enforcement officers, including two women, aged between 30 and 41 years old, were detained when they provided their statements over the case between 2.30pm and 8.40pm on Thursday (March 23).

The other syndicate members, believed to be civilians, comprised three local women aged between 37 and 48, and a 73-year-old foreign man, all of whom were picked up on the same day between 3.30pm and 6pm.

It is believed that paperless individuals who wanted to travel would seek out these four suspects who acted as agents.

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