Crime & Courts

Immigration crackdown on migrant colonies, 65 foreigners detained

JOHOR BARU: The Johor Immigration Department detained 65 undocumented foreigners in a two-day raid beginning Monday, against the growing migrants' colonies statewide.

Its director Baharuddin Tahir said similar raids will be ongoing throughout the year, in its efforts to address the mushrooming number of migrants operating businesses and starting their own "colonies" in several hotspots in the state.

He said stern actions will be taken too against locals or documented foreigners found harbouring them, and trafficking illegal immigrants in or out of the state.

In the two-day raid, the department's enforcement unit officers from their state headquarters and Mersing branch, conducted checks on 26 premises in Johor Baru, and two in Mersing.

This led to 147 foreigners being screened for their documentations.

They detained 65 foreigners aged between 20 and 49, for various offences including for overstaying and working without valid visas and permits.

Among them were 30 Bangladeshi men, 18 Indonesians consisting of 15 men and three women, seven Indian-nationals including a woman, five Pakistani men, two women from Thailand and Cambodia, a Myanmar man and a Yemeni man.

Baharuddin said besides the detainees, a 41-year-old Bangladeshi man who was the employed legally, and suspected of violating Section 55B of the Immigration Act 1959/63 for employing one or more foreign workers without valid documents was slapped with an attendance notice.

The enforcement officers also issued 11 more attendance notices to locals to appear at the department's headquarters to assist in further investigations.

All those detained are suspected of violating Section 6(1)(c) of the Immigration Act 1959/63 (Act 155) for not possessing valid documents or permits to stay in the country, Section 15(1)(c) of the same act for overstaying, and Regulation 39(b) of the Immigration Regulations 1963 for violating the conditions of their passes.

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