KALABAKAN The Eastern Sabah Security Command (ESSCom) through its intelligence unit, is tracking down boat skippers who collude with illegals to enter the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (ESSZone) waters.
Its Public Action Division director, Terry Henry said the move was aimed at breaking the chain involving the entry of illegal immigrants into Sabah.
“This is towards ensuring our country, especially Sabah, is free of illegals,” he said at the merdeka @ Kalabakan district community programme organised by ESSCom and the Tawau Information Department, here, today.
Meanwhile, he called on all parties not to collude with and protect the illegals as this was against the law.
“Those found colluding with illegals and trying to harbour them could be jailed for up to five years or fined RM10,000 or both, if convicted, he said.
Meanwhile, Terry said ESSCOM was conducting the Illegals Prevention Operation (OCP) in the districts of Tawau and Sandakan, the focal points of illegals trying to enter Sabah.
“This involves security surveillance at the land and sea border areas suspected of being rat trails for illegals,” he added.
The OCP, coordinated by ESSCom, involves the Malaysian Armed Forces, Royal Malaysia Police and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
Terry said that in Tawau, 3,115 inspections were conducted during the operation from April 20 until yesterday, with 23 arrests made involving illegals aged between two and 60 years, while 41 boats carrying 615 illegals from Indonesia were chased out during the period.
Prior to this, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin said 37 landing spots for illegals had been identified involving 10 districts in Sabah.
These landing spots involved Sandakan (11 areas); Lahad Datu (five); Tawau, Kudat and Beluran (four each); Kunak (three); Kota Marudu and Kinabatangan (two each) and Semporna and Pitas (one each).
Source: BERNAMA News Agency