KUALA LUMPUR, June 6 — There has been a considerable increase in the number of detentions under the Prevention of Crime Act (Poca) as well as the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 last year, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) said in its 2016 Human Rights Report released today.
In the report, Suaram said 189 cases Sosma detentions were recorded by the NGO last year, as compared to less than 50 cases in 2015.
According to the report, 278 arrests were also made under Poca.
According to Suaram’s statistical breakdown, 102 people were detained for terrorism offences under Sosma, 39 for human trafficking and immigration offences, while other cases totaled 45.
Under Poca meanwhile, one person was detained for terrorism, 28 for human trafficking and immigration offences, while other criminal offences recorded 249 cases.
“In July 2016, one of the first few known cases where Sosma was applied against suspects of organised crime surfaced. Eight individuals were arrested and charged for allegedly being leaders and members of Gang 21 Japan. They were charged under Section 130V6.
“In October 2016, a group of nine were detained in Penang for attempted kidnapping, with a number of those detained, subjected to investigation under Sosma for 28 days,” Suaram said, adding that those detained were presumably investigated for offences under Chapter VIb of the Penal Code.
The report said that the between January and August last year, a total of 174 people were detained under Poca in Selangor.
“Perak police also reported 75 detentions under Poca within the same period. Unfortunately, at the time of publication, no nation-wide statistics for arrest and detention under Poca and Pota (Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015),” Suaram said, expressing concern that the trend of such arrests still remained prevalent.