PASIR MAS, Oct 13 — The General Operations Force (GOF) 7th Battalion (PGA7) recorded a total of 108 cases, with total seizure valued at RM7 million, since taking over the Covid-19 Ops Benteng patrolling duties from PGA8 on September 14.
PGA7 commanding officer Supt Azhari Nusi said all the cases recorded involved smuggling activities and cross-border crimes between Malaysia-Thailand.
Among the biggest seizures were RM1.47 million worth of cigarettes at Chabang Empat Tok Meh Ngah, Tumpat and 101 smuggled livestock worth RM606,000 in Kampung Meranti, Pasir Mas, he said in a press conference here today.
To tighten control at the Malaysia-Thailand border, especially in Kelantan, Azhari said the PGA7 had intensified checks at illegal bases in Lubok (Rantau Panjang), Jitong (Jeram Perdah), Jeram Perdah I (Jeram Perdah) and Kebun (Pengkalan Kubor).
“The tighter checks are aimed at ensuring there is no influx of illegal immigrants to curb the spread of Covid-19,” he said.
He said that once the number of officers and personnel deployed under the operation was increased from 400 to 430, there was a sharp drop in cases involving the entry of undocumented immigrants.
During the operation, he added, the authorities also detained 57 illegal immigrants from Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and Pakistan, as well eight Malaysian smugglers, including a woman.
In the latest development, Azhari said PGA7 also seized a total of 111 kg of ketum leaves worth RM3,330 hidden in bushes and a shed in Kampung Jedok, Tanah Merah at 9pm yesterday.
“The ketum leaves are believed to be for neighbouring countries due to the high demand there,” he said, adding that PGA7 would continue to work with the Malaysian Armed Forces to tighten border security,” he added. — Bernama