SEMPORNA, (Dec 1) — The Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) Sunday launched an operation dubbed Ops Gasak to flush out illegal immigrants in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone).
Esscom director general Datuk Mohammad Mentek said the integrated operation with police, army, national registration department and immigration department was a followup to the murder and kidnapping incident involving Taiwanese tourists at Pulau Pom Pom last Nov 15.
“Based on initial investigations on the case, the criminals seemed to know about the tourists that come here. Someone could have divulged information. Hence why we launch this operation. We don’t want resort workers to be informers for criminals,” he told reporters here as the first Ops Gasak operation ended after eight hours.
Nine individuals were roped in during the operation which commenced at 7 am. for offences such as, not having valid documents and possession of fake identity cards.
According to him, the team inspected two resorts in Pulau Mabul, one in Pulau Pom Pom and one in Pulau Kapalai, and screened 167 workers.
“The operation today is only at the resorts but we will expand it to cover the villages in the 10 districts within the Esszone,” he said.
He also issued a warning to resort workers to avoid being used as a stooge by criminals.
Mohammad also cautioned residents living near the resorts against renting out their homes to undocumented immigrants as they would potentially face action. — BERNAMA