English World

Successful thwarting of kidnap-for-ransom group will deter future attempts, says fishermen group

SEMPORNA: Armed raiders from southern Philippines will have to think twice before striking Sabah waters again after a group on a kidnapping spree was busted by the Malaysian security forces.

Semporna Fishermen Association chairman Salleh Abdul Salleh said the element of surprise has allowed the team from the 14th Battalion General Operations Force’s Tiger Platoon to intercept and confront the seven gunmen on Thursday night.

Complemented the authorities for the successful mission, he said the strategy had worked well for the authorities in thwarting the armed group who had already taken two men hostage and robbed three fishing boats in less than an hour.

“The way I see it, the criminals were caught off guard and the police strategy worked,” he said of the firefight which ended with three of the armed men killed, two arrested and two more missing.

A hostage was also rescued and another remains missing.

“We proposed before for the security forces to place their personnel on board fishing boats or other vessels transporting goods or passengers.

Psychologically, this will deter the criminals from confronting the uniformed men.

“If you look at most kidnapping or robbery cases at sea, these people will strike at night and they do it swiftly just like the latest case…but unfortunately, their luck ran out.” he said. -nst

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