WANG KELIAN (Perlis), May 25: Police today confirmed the discovery of 139 grave sites and 28 human trafficking camps in Wang Kelian, near Malaysia-Thailand border.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the graves contained at least one highly decomposed body with only skin and bones at the camps believed to have been abandoned less than two weeks ago.
Speaking to Malaysian and foreign reporters here today, Khalid said the discovery was the outcome of ‘Op Wawasan Khas JKDNKA 2015’ conducted by 300 General Operations Force (GOF)and VAT 69 police commando personnel from May 11 until Saturday.
“This proves that the Malaysian government is transparent and not hiding any information involving human trafficking issues,” he said.
He said the design of the camps, which were fenced, showed that the victims were not free to move about.
“These camps are believed to be occupied since 2013 and the two camps only abandoned between two and three weeks ago,” he said.
Khalid said the operation was launched following the discovery of several mass graves of suspected human trafficking victims by Thai authorities near Padang Besar and Songkhla, recently.
He said the first group of bodies was expected to be exhumed this afternoon by 31 forensic personnel.
He added that the search operations were divided into A, B and C sectors of 49.5 kms from Kampung Wai to Tangga 100 in Felcra Lubuk Sireh, Padang Besar.
Khalid said there was a camp that could house up to 200 people, while another one could accommodate 10 to 20 people and also only two people.
“Information revealed that the syndicate brought in the victims via valid or illegal routes in Padang Besar or Wang Kelian after receiving payment from certain people,” he said.
In a related development, Khalid said 90 percent of 37 people, who were involved in human trafficking and detained this year were from Kedah, Perlis, Perak and Kelantan.
He said 1,914 illegal immigrants were detained at Perlis border last year while 1,305 people were detained between January and April this year.
A total of 2,094 illegal immigrants were detained in Kedah last year, Kelantan (3,462) and Perak (966) while from January to April this year, 853 people were detained in Kedah, Perak (498) and Kelantan (88) were detained, he added.