GEORGE TOWN: A total of 13 suspects allegedly involved in operating illegal money lending activities in Penang have been arrested by the police.
Penang police chief Comm Datuk Khaw Kok Chin said the suspects were detained in separate locations in Perak and Penang.
"The arrests were made in a large-scale operation conducted by the police. We will not compromise with the 'ah long' activities," he added.
He said the operation was made after the police formed a special task force to combat illegal money lending activities in the state.
The operation involved 28 teams comprising 112 police officers and personnel from the Criminal Investigation Department, Commercial Crime Investigation Department and Narcotic Crime Investigation Department.
He said the suspects will be investigated under Section 5(2) of the Moneylenders Act 1951.
It was understood that Comm Khaw had received a "warning" letter sent to his office at the Penang police contingent headquarters on June 1.
In the letter, the suspects warned Comm Khaw and the police to cooperate with them to avoid being splashed with paint and acid or even being shot.
The suspects threatened to set fire to a shop or police station and enclosed in the letter were six Chinese joss paper banknotes with a note.
On Saturday (June 3), Comm Khaw described the threats he received as normal and a risk faced by the police in carrying out their duties to fight crime.
"Threats or intimidation like this are always faced by the police in carrying out their duties to combat illegal activities or syndicates.
"As Penang chief of police, the entire contingent and I will not compromise or conspire with any party that carries out illegal activities," he said in a statement on June 4.
He said his team would also continue to take strict action against those who threaten him or the Penang police contingent.
On June 5, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said stern action will be taken against those who try to threaten and intimidate officers in dispensing their duties to eradicate illegal activities and crime nationwide.
He also said police will leave no stone unturned in tracking down those who threatened the Penang police chief.
In another development Comm Khaw said a total of four police reports has been received by police in connection with Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor’s statement about Penang belonging to Kedah.
Comm Khaw said the case is being investigated under Section 505(b) of Penal Code and the Communications and Multimedia Act 1988 by Bukit Aman's Special Investigation Unit (USJT).