Esscom detains 33 undocumented migrants in Tawau op

Detainees being escorted by security personnel to a truck.

KOTA KINABALU: A total of 33 undocumented migrants were roped in during a large-scale integrated operation led by the Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) in the east coast Tawau district.

The operation, from Monday to Wednesday (Dec 4 to 6), was held simultaneously on land and at sea, involving multiple state and federal agencies.

Esscom Commander Deputy Comm Datuk Victor Sanjos said they screened 1,126 people and inspected 54 boats during the course of the exercise.

“Of those checked, we detained 33 found without any valid personal documents, and they were handed over to the Immigration Department for the next course of action,” he said in a statement on Friday (Dec 8).

“Our men also arrested two women who were found in possession of ketamine weighing 27.2g,” he added.

Errant local hawkers also did not escape the long arm of the law, he said, adding that two were issued compound notices for operating without a valid licence.

DCP Sanjos said they detected one case each over violations of the Ports and Harbours Enactment 2002, Control of Supplies Regulations 1974 and Control of Supplies Act 1961.

He said the operation focused mainly on jetties, business premises and fish markets, with a view towards detecting breaches of rules governing controlled and subsidised items.

Thanking the 200 officers and personnel who made the exercise a success, he said such operations will be intensified to curb potential cross-border crimes.

He urged the public to provide any information that could help this effort by calling 089-863181 or via WhatsApp at 011-63311072.

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