Malaysian police have dismantled an international human trafficking syndicate that were shipping migrants, including children, through Malaysia to Australia and New Zealand, Malaysia Police chief Tan Sri Mohamad Fuzi Harun said today.
The inspector-general of police said 24 Sri Lankan migrants — 12 men, eight women, two boys and two girls — and 10 Indian citizens — four men, three women, and three girls — were rescued, Malay Mail reported.
Three Sri Lankan men suspected of being traffickers have been arrested for unlawfully entering and exiting Malaysia and are being investigated under Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 and the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants (Atipsom) Act 2007, on top of violating immigration rules under Section 5(2) of the Immigration Act 1959 and 1963.
He added that investigation showed the syndicate purchased a yacht and was in the process of buying three boat engines to smuggle the migrants to Australia and New Zealand.
“With this detention, the (police) have successfully foiled a human trafficking syndicate in Malaysia that has been operating since mid-2018, with international networks across Sri Lanka, India, Australia and New Zealand,” he said in a statement.