PUTRAJAYA: The Foreign Ministry is certain that a large number of the 47 Malaysians who were detained by the Cambodian government are innocent and are not involved in any wrongdoing.
In saying this, its minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said they were merely victims of a job scam.
“Therefore, we have sought the help and cooperation of the Cambodian government to assist in the release of these innocent Malaysians as soon as possible.
“We must also respect the sovereignty of the Cambodian law and laws need to be enforced. For the rest of those who are being investigated, we urge our Cambodian counterpart to accelerate the investigation process. The earlier the better,” he told reporters today.
He said this during a press conference after a meeting with International Trade and Industry Ministry (MITI) minister Datuk Darell Leiking and officials from both ministries.
Previously, Wisma Putra confirmed the detention of the 47 Malaysians since Dec 11 last year, on charges of cheating, initiating and carrying out illegal online gambling activities.
Saifuddin also urged the people to know and understand that the law practised by the Cambodian government was different from the one practised in Malaysia.
“Their law is based French law, while we are practising common law. Therefore, there are times that the interpretation may differ.
“That’s why we have sent our legal officer to assist in terms of legal matters over the investigation,” he added.
Saifuddin also said that all 47 Malaysians detained in Cambodia have appointed a lawyer for themselves.
“The government also provided legal assistance to those detainees,” he added.
In a statement yesterday, Saifuddin said he had appealed to the Cambodian government for the speedy release of 47 Malaysians who are currently being detained in Banteay Meanchey.