Bukit Aman: Almost 15,000 people arrested nationwide for defying MCO during phases 1 and 2

Federal Criminal Investigations Department director Datuk Huzir Mohamed speaks during a press conference in Bukit Aman April 15, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May
Federal Criminal Investigations Department director Datuk Huzir Mohamed speaks during a press conference in Bukit Aman April 15, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, April 15 — A total of 14,922 individuals have been detained to date for flouting the movement control order (MCO) enforced nationwide since last month.

Federal Criminal Investigations Department director Commissioner Datuk Huzir Mohamed said the arrests comprised those during phase one of the MCO from March 18 until March 31 and phase two of the MCO from April 1 until April 14.

“A total of 3,627 people were picked up during phase one, while 11,295 people were nabbed during phase two.

“Of the total arrested, 5,830 people have been prosecuted in court,” he said during a press conference at Bukit Aman here.

He also revealed that from the total arrested, six individuals were repeat offenders.

Huzir also stressed that the police will not compromise anymore during the third phase of the MCO, which took effect from today, as there are still those who continue to disregard the MCO.

“We will not hesitate to take action during the third phase of the MCO. We will arrest and charge (you) in court. We will open an investigation paper and charge the offenders.

“No more compounds. No more compounds, I repeat,” he said.

According to Huzir, many of those arrested were unable to provide a reasonable excuse as to why they had left their homes during the MCO.

“The order is perfectly clear, only those who have permission and within the essential service or emergencies are allowed to move around.

“Stern action during the third phase will be enforced. This is to break the Covid-19 chain of infection as quickly as possible,” he said.

This follows the announcement made by Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob yesterday, saying the police will be focusing less on issuing compound notices to flouters of the MCO and will now book them to be brought straight to court, seeing how many are still defying the MCO.

Ismail Sabri said the decision to charge violators directly instead of issuing compounds was due to the burden the latter added to the enforcement of the MCO.

On April 8, Federal Internal Security and Public Order Department (KDNKA) director Datuk Seri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said that MCO violations would automatically result in a fixed RM1,000 compound instead of arrest and prosecution.

Acryl explained that the move was to address concerns that custodial sentences for MCO violations created the risk of exposing the prison population to Covid-19.

Malaysia entered its third phase of the MCO beginning today for a period of two weeks until April 28.

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