Four Marudi hunters encroaching into Brunei released back home

Gerawat speaking to reporters.

KUCHING, May 10: Four hunters from Marudi who had encroached into Brunei recently have been brought back to Sarawak safely.

Mulu assemblyman Datuk Gerawat Gala said the four individuals were carrying shotguns during their hunting trip near the Sarawak-Brunei border. They arrived in Miri yesterday.

According to Gerawat, he had enlisted assistance from the Foreign Ministry, as well as former Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar to brief the Malaysian Embassy in Brunei on the four detainees.

“I have also requested our embassy to help deal with the Brunei authorities and secure their release. Wisma Putra in Kuala Lumpur was also very much involved in the process,” he told reporters when met at the Sarawak Legislative Assembly (DUN) complex here today.

The four hunters were from Rh Adang, Ulu Sungei Ridan at Poyut-Lubok Nibong, Marudi.

He said that they were arrested and detained by the Brunei authorities on April 16 for trespassing into Brunei during a hunting trip in the jungle.

After being arrested by the Brunei authorities patrolling along the Sarawak-Brunei border on April 16, Gerawat added that they were placed under quarantine for 14 days until April 30.

They were placed under police remand in Bandar Seri Begawan pending police investigation, he continued.

“I engaged the services of an experienced Brunei lawyer to represent the four men.

“With the help of the Malaysian embassy in Bandar Seri Begawan and close cooperation of the Brunei authorities, the men were discharged and freed by the court (in Brunei) without any charge on May 9 (yesterday),” he said.

However, he revealed that the shotgun which the four hunters carried during their hunting trip was forfeited by the Brunei authorities.

At the moment, the four individuals are being quarantined in a designated hotel in compliance with the conditional movement control order (CMCO) for Sarawak returnees from the outstation.

On another note, Gerawat advised all the village headman and tuai rumah in Marudi not to go hunting near the border area.

He called on the relevant border enforcement agencies to create awareness among communities living near the border about the location of the international boundary.

During the MCO, he believed it is vital for the enforcement authorities to prevent the movement of people across Sarawak borders as a measure to curb the spreading of Covid-19. — DayakDaily