KUNAK: Police have found several firearms near the two men who were shot dead during an exchange of fire at Balian Ulu Tingkayu here this morning.
Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Abdul Rashid said the district police, after the gunfight, recovered two homemade shotguns (bakakuk), a .45 Colt pistol, a .38 revolver, live bullets and shell casings, air rifle, 12 bore bullets, casings, several 5.56mm bullets for M-16 assault rifle, a knife and machete.
"After further investigation, the M16 bullet found next to the bodies do not belong to local security forces.
"From the worn out condition of the firearms, we do not rule out, that the duo had been active in crimes for some time," he said.
Police also confiscated three packets of drugs, believed to be syabu, from a pocket of one of the dead men, measuring scale, equipment used in taking drugs, handphones and two motorcycles.
Abdul Rashid added that during the 1.30am raid, district police chief Superintendent Mohd Nasaruddin Nasir and his team spotted some movement at a hut in the oil palm plantation.
The plantation area is located about 50 kilometre off road or two hours journey from the main road.
A shootout ensued after the police's call for them to surrender was ignored.
He added that both men, in their 30s, did not possess any identification documents and believed to be either members of a drug trafficking syndicate or robbery gang.
"We will investigate if those firearms had been used in any cases in Kunak and elsewhere in Sabah.
"For now, we are still checking if they were linked with the seven-armed men in Lahad Datu and Semporna on Thursday." he said, adding search and rescue of two missing armed men and a hostage was still ongoing.