Malaysian Police today disclosed that financial transactions involving huge sums of money had been carried out, believed to activate the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) group in the country, the Bernama news agency reported.
Bukit Aman’s Special Branch counter- terrorism division (E8) principal assistant director Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said the financial transactions were detected in the accounts of individuals detained in the operations carried out on Thursday and Saturday (Oct 10 and 12) over their alleged involvement in the LTTE.
“From the investigations carried out at the suspects’ premises and checked on their mobile phones, police have seized flags, posters, pictures of LTTE leaders and detected financial transactions involving a huge sum of money.
“The financial transactions are believed to fund the promotional activities, recruitment and mobilisation of LTTE programmes in the country,” he said at a press conference in Bukit Aman today.
Declining to elaborate on the actual amount involved in the transactions, he said police also found that the LTTE has branches in every state.
“There is a movement trying to activate the LTTE and that’s why the police are making the arrests to stop this from expanding.
“There are two suspects among those detained who were planning to launch a ‘lone wolf’ attack in the country, for example, they had injured Sri Lankan High Commissioner to Malaysia Ibrahim Sahib Ansar in 2016,” he said.
Meanwhile, Ayob Khan stressed that the arrests had nothing to do with any political party but it was a terrorist issue.
“The arrests were made because they support the violence and the police will not tolerate anyone, no matter which political party (they belong to). The police will continue to investigate and if there is any basis and evidence, a follow-up will be made.”
He also warned that those involved in financing and supporting the LTTE are now on the radar of Special Branch’s counter-terrorism unit.
Asked why two detained state assemblymen were not asked to give their statements first, Ayob Khan said: “This is a security matter and if they were asked to give statements first, they would give a ‘statement on the surface’ and the police would not have the right to carry out a search.
Commenting on the publication of pictures of the LTTE-linked individuals that went viral, he said police did not arbitrarily detain any individuals.
He also explained that it was not a crime to sympathise with the fate of the Tamil ethnic group in Sri Lanka, but it was wrong to support the LTTE.
“The LTTE has been declared a terrorist group … why should we support this group?” he said.
A total of 12 individuals, including two assemblymen, were arrested on Thursday and Saturday over alleged involvement in the LTTE, including supporting and channelling funds to the group.