KUALA LUMPUR, May 18 — The Immigration Department continued its tough stance on undocumented foreigners following raids at two malls in the heart of the city centre yesterday.
The department, joined by policemen and National Registration Department personnel, screened 260 foreigners during their raids at Low Yat Plaza and Imbi Plaza.
Some 125, aged between 25 and 40, were arrested for various offences including wrongful use of social visit passes, overstaying and carrying fake documents. From the 125, 105 were men while the rest were women.
Those detained were sent to the Bukit Jalil Immigration detention centre for further questioning before being deported back to their respective countries.
Immigration Department director-general Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali led the operation that comprised 170 personnel.
He said the joint operation would be carried out regularly to detect, detain, charge and deport illegals here.
“Let me once again remind the public and employers especially, not to employ, harbour and protect illegal foreign workers as those found guilty will face stern action,” Mustafar said.
“Members of the public who have any information and leads on illegal foreign workers are more than welcome to come forward and pass it to the department so that necessary enforcement can be carried out.”
Yesterday’s raids came barely three weeks after operations at another mall in Bukit Bintang.
Mustafar disclosed 5,908 operations were carried out from Jan 1 to Tuesday. Of the 562,654 foreign workers screened, 17,971 of them were illegals.
Some 19,457 were deported while 497 employers were hauled up for employing or harbouring illegal foreign workers.
Mustafar reiterated the government had given a grace period until June 30 for employers to register their illegal and undocumented foreign workers for their e-cards.
“So far only 85,000 have registered for their e-cards and this number is well below the estimated target of between 400,000 and 600,000.
“I hope employers will take the opportunity to do the right thing and register their undocumented foreign workers as soon as possible as we will be carrying out continuous enforcement with raids, inspections and screenings across the country,” he said.
On April 29, Mustafar led a joint operation together with four other government agencies at Pavilion Kuala Lumpur where 211 illegal foreign workers were detained.
Some of the 125 undocumented foreigners sit in front of Low Yat Plaza following yesterday’s operation.