KUALA LUMPUR, April 9 -- The inclusion of whipping and imprisonment of more than 20 years for members of human trafficking and migrant smuggling syndicates are among the proposals for amendment to the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act (ATIPSOM) 2007.
ATIPSOM 2007 currently carries a jail sentence of 15 years, and a fine, or both, upon conviction.
Bukit Aman CID Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Division (D3) intelligence/operations officer Supt Cha Hoong Fong said the amendments were in the process of getting approval in Parliament.
“This matter has been discussed with the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Council (MAPO), namely to look at stricter punishment against them (syndicates),” he said while appearing on the ‘Ruang Bicara’ programme aired on Bernama TV tonight.
Cha said the heftier punishment was part of efforts to curb the activities of syndicates which had made the country a hub for their criminal actvities.
He said in the meantime, the police had used the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (SOSMA) to keep the criminals at bay.
"We began using it in 2019 to tackle these kinds of criminal activities, where it has a significant impact on them (syndicates) because it is placed under organised crime, and makes it possible to cripple the syndicate involved," said Cha.
He said through SOSMA, members of the syndicate would go through a longer detention period for investigations.
"A total of six migrant trafficking and smuggling syndicates were successfully crippled last year," he said, adding that 146 cases involving human trafficking and migrant smuggling were recorded last year compared to 272 cases in 2019, which indicated the effectiveness of police enforcement in the matter.
Pejabat Strategik Nasional Majlis Antipemerdagangan Orang dan Antipengeludupan Migran (MAPO)
Kementerian Dalam Negeri
Aras 2, Blok D7, Kompleks D,
Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Persekutuan