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Kidnapping of 10: Eight suspects are arrested
Published on: Friday, June 21, 2019
By: Bernama

KUALA LUMPUR: Eight men have been arrested to help in investigation into the kidnapping of 10 Bajau Laut fishermen (sea gypsies) in Felda waters in Lahad Datu, Sabah, on Tuesday, said CID Director Datuk Huzir Mohamed.

He said six of those arrested are foreigners, aged between 17 and 60, who were spared by the armed kidnappers.

“The two locals arrested are the boat owner and the boat operator,” he said.

Meanwhile, Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador said the boats should not have been in the country’s territorial waters at night time.

“They (fishermen) should know that the area is under curfew and is out of bounds.

“No entry unless they inform the authorities on the details of their activities,” he said.

In the 2am incident, the 10 fishermen were reportedly kidnapped by an Abu Sayyaf-linked armed group from two boats in Lahad Datu waters while on their way to Semporna.

They are believed to have been taken to Pulau Sitangkai in southern Philippines, about 15 minutes’ journey from Tambisan waters in Lahad Datu.

The victims, aged between 17 and 60, did not have personal identification documents and only possessed the lepa-lepa document issued to nomadic fishermen.

Meanwhile, in KOTA KINABALU, Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Omar Mammah said the owner and handlers of the two boats were also under investigation for harbouring the fishermen as they were foreigners without valid identity documents.



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