SEPANG: Twelve Malaysians held captive in Cambodia after being duped by a lucrative job offer as customer service agents were safely repatriated today, while four others are still in the country as they face a quarantine after testing positive for Covid-19.
The successful repatriation of the 12 men, who arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) at 8.10am, is the result of close cooperation between the Royal Malaysian Police and the Cambodian Police, as well as Interpol , Aseanapol and Wisma Putra.
Deputy Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Datuk Amran Mohamed Zin, said Cambodian authorities received information about the involvement of 16 Malaysians in illegal activities in the country and arrested them all on April 4.
“Even though the Cambodian government found out that they (16 Malaysians) were carrying out illegal activities in Cambodia, legal action has been put aside for now so that we can bring back our people stranded there,” he said. he told reporters at the airport.
Amran said the Malaysian Embassy in Cambodia was monitoring the condition of the other four Malaysians, one of whom is a woman, and would arrange for their return as soon as they were cleared of Covid-19.
Earlier, Bukit Aman CID Director Datuk Seri Abd Jalil Hassan reportedly said the 16 Malaysians were tricked and forced to work as crooks by a union in Preah Sihanouk which was offering lucrative job offers as agents. of customer service in Cambodia.
He said they had all been tricked through Facebook and that the cost of their trip there had been paid for by a company in Cambodia, and that their travel documents had been seized, their movements checked and they had been placed under tight security upon their arrival in the country. .
Meanwhile, Heng Zhi Li, the lawyer representing all the victims, said they left for Cambodia in stages between September 2021 and February this year.
He said they were promised a salary of RM7,000, but were forced to work as crooks without any pay, and were also beaten, slapped and mistreated with electric shocks.
Victims began contacting MCA in January and the information was then shared with the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Migrant Smuggling Council (MAPO) who requested assistance from Aseanapol and Interpol to rescue, he added. – Bernama