Monday June 17, 2013

189 to be charged with illegal entry


KUALA LUMPUR: Fifty Myanmar nationals are expected to be charged at the Sessions Court in Sepang today for illegal entry into Malaysia.
Some 139 others will be charged tomorrow over the same offence, under Section 6(1)(c) of the Immigration Act 1959/1963, which carries a jail term as well as a fine of up to RM10,000 and whipping of up to six strokes upon conviction.
All the 189 Myanmar nationals will be deported to their home country, said Kuala Lumpur Immigration enforcement chief James Musa Singa.
The police had rounded up 1,000 Myanmar nationals on June 7, following factional clashes between them.
However, only those who were suspected of holding fake United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) cards or had improper documents were detained.
“We talked about charging them separately but there’s no point pushing around here and there. Our laws are quite straight forward and their offence is quite severe.
“So, we will charge them and send them home,” said James Musa.
UNHCR spokesman Yante Ismail said the organisation would send its legal advisers to speak to the detainees and verify if they have legitimate refugee claims.
“Since their arrest, UNHCR has not yet had access to the Myanmar nationals with fake UNHCR documentation.
“If they are found to be in need of international protection, our legal representative will mitigate their sentence to prevent caning and deportation.
“In accordance with our standard procedure, if they are in need of international protection, but have not yet been registered with us, UNHCR will seek their release so that their refugee claims can be verified,” Yante said in an email.