Special vice team being formed

09 Oct 2014 / 11:24 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: A special police team to combat illegal gambling, vice and secret societies will swing into action within the next two months.
The team, dubbed Special Tactical Squad 3, will comprise 200 officers and other police personnel, and conduct raids and searches at suspect premises nationwide from December.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who disclosed this in the Dewan Rakyat today, also said the ministry will review and amend three existing laws on gambling – Common Gaming Houses Act 1953, Lotteries Act 1952 and Pool Betting Act 1967, to make them more effective against cyber gambling.
The three laws, he said, are outdated as the Internet did not exist then.
"But today there is the Internet which is being abused and causing a lot of problems to society," he said when responding to a question from Datuk Johari Abdul Ghani (BN-Titiwangsa) on the effectiveness of enforcement action against cybercafe and internet gambling activities.
Ahmad Zahid said 197,477 units of computers worth about RM197 million were seized in police raids between 2013 to August this year, while 2,500 people were charged under the Common Gaming Houses Act and 1,753 people were charged under Entertainment and Places of Entertainments Enactment 1997.
Johari said that despite the various operations, cyber gambling activities remains rampant, which goes to show that there is a problem with the district police chiefs for failing to identify cyber gambling premises.
At a function in Shah Alam later today, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the special team made up mainly of CID personnel will also investigate money-laundering by illegal gambling operators.
Meanwhile, responding to a supplementary question, Ahmad Zahid said there is an urgent need to set up a special court to expedite cases involving human trafficking as delays in prosecution has contributed to Malaysia's drop in the global index in addressing this crime.
"It is true that prosecution of human trafficking cases have become an issue when there are 770 people arrested and only 173 charged. The number does not tally with the arrests," he lamented.
He said discussions are in progress between the Home Ministry and the Attorney-General's Chambers on the setting up of the court.
Malaysia was downgraded to Tier 3 along with Thailand, Gambia and Venezuela, by the US State Department in its annual Trafficking in Persons Report released in June.
Ahmad Zahid said the government has discussed the matter with US authorities and the downgrade is automatic, because Malaysia has been on Tier 2 for three years consecutively.
"We have set up a high-level committee where five ministries are involved and I personally chair the meetings and coordinate with these ministries. We also engage closely with NGOs that offer protection to victims," he said.
According to the Council of Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants, a total of 847 cases of human trafficking had been reported with 128 people convicted and 1,892 victims rescued.


thesundaily_my Sentifi Top 10 talked about stocks