‘Ops Benteng Covid’: 16 Indonesians caught illegally entering Sarawak

SAC Mancha Ata

By Malcolm Lau

KUCHING, June 27: General Operation Force Sarawak (PGA) made three arrests involving 16 Indonesians for attempting to enter the state illegally during the two-day ‘Ops Benteng Covid’, which ended on June 26.

Its Commander SAC Mancha Ata said the first arrest was made on June 25 at 10 am, when  members of the Battalion 11 PGA Kuching on duty at the Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security (ICQS) Tebedu caught an Indonesian man trying to enter Sarawak.

“The 31-year-old Indonesian attempted to enter Sarawak by using a small route where he needs to walk past a Catholic graveyard at Kampung Entubuh, Tebedu,” he said in a statement.

According to Mancha, the Indonesian man did not have any travel documentation and he was handed over to Serian Police Station for further action.

“The second arrest was made on the same day (June 25) when a team of PGA members caught six Indonesians attempting to enter Sarawak through Kampung Tong Nibong, Serian around 4.30 pm,” he said.

He said two motorcycles, two sets of keys, and one passport were confiscated from the group. They were later handed to Serian Police Station for further action as well.

“A group with 19 Indonesians were arrested in the third arrest on June 26 where PGA members saw the group attempted to enter Sarawak by walking through a palm plantation at Serian around 6.30 am,” Mancha added.

He noted that no working permits and travel documentation were found on the 19 Indonesians and they were all brought to Serian Police Station for investigation.

“All the Indonesians who were arrested in the three arrests will be investigated under Sec6(1)(c) Immigration Act 1953/69,” he said.

Mancha said that the group in the second arrest will also be charged under Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (ATIPSOM) 2007.

“We will continue our operation aggressively to prevent more smuggling and trafficking activities from the illegal immigrants at the borders and also to prevent the spreading of the Covid-19 infection,” Mancha added.-DayakDaily