Seven drones seized during nomination day, nine arrested

Drones. — graphic

KUCHING, April 29: Police yesterday ‘grounded’ seven drones flown over nomination centres in four states and arrested nine men who had operated them, reported Bernama yesterday.

Three of the drones had been flown in Bangi and Shah Alam in Selangor by three men, two in Merbok and Langkawi in Kedah, one in Bukit Gantang in Perak, and one in Kota Bharu, Kelantan.

In Shah Alam, Selangor police chief Mazlan Mansor said two men, aged 33 and 41, were picked up by police close to the nomination centre at Dewan Besar Tanjong MBSA in Section 19, Shah Alam, and another person near the centre at Dewan Demense in Bandar Baharu Bangi, Kajang, for flying drones in a restricted area without a permit from the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM).

He said the civil aviation regulations provided for a fine of up to RM50,000 and a jail term of up to three years, or both, for the offence.

Meanwhile in Taiping, district police chief ACP Mohamad Taib said two men, aged 19 and 21, were taken to the Taiping police station and released on police bail.

They were picked up after they flew the device over the area where Barisan Nasional (BN) supporters had gathered near the nomination centre for the Bukit Gantang parliamentary seat at the Advanced Technology Training Centre (Adtec) there.

In Alor Setar, Kedah police chief Zainal Abidin Kassim said the police detained two men in their 20s in Merbok and Langkawi for operating drones in prohibited areas and that the drones were handed over to the CAAM for further action.

In Kota Bharu, two men in their 20s were detained near Dewan Jubli Perak of the Kota Bharu Municipal Council after they were believed to have operated a drone to take photographs and videos of the nomination centre and the surrounding areas.

Kelantan Police chief Hasanuddin Hassan said they had flown the drone just for the fun of it.

The day before, Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order Department director Zulkifli Abdullah was reported as saying the use of drones and paragliding machines over or near nomination centres nationwide was strictly forbidden due to security reasons. — Bernama