JOHOR BARU, April 27 — A total of 12 enforcement officers from the police and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) have been arrested for their alleged links to fugitive businessman Nicky Liow Soon Hee in the second phase of Ops Pelican 3.0.
The massive operation, led by the Johor police contingent, made the arrests in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Melaka and Negri Sembilan between April 21 and 27.
Johor police chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said the arrest of the 12 suspects was the first involving law enforcement officers suspected of being involved in ‘Nicky Gang’ activities.
He said the arrests followed a recent media conference by Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador where it was revealed that a total of 34 officers and enforcement personnel are believed to be involved with the gang.
“An operation was carried out where a total of 12 enforcement officers, aged between 36 and 49 were arrested, involving 10 police officers and two MACC officers,” said Ayob Khan during a media conference at the Johor police contingent headquarters here today.
Liow is high on the police’s most wanted list for alleged money-laundering activities and involvement in an organised crime syndicate.
Today is also the first time that the authorities have announced such a large-scale arrest of government law enforcement agency personnel.
Ayob Khan said that two of the arrested police officers, with the rank of superintendent and inspector, are from the federal police headquarters in Bukit Aman.
He said four other police officers were detained at the Selangor police contingent headquarters, with the rank of deputy superintendent, assistant superintendent and inspectors.
“The police also nabbed a deputy superintendent from the Melaka police contingent headquarters, while two assistant superintendents were arrested at the Kuala Lumpur police contingent headquarters, followed by an inspector in the Ngeri Sembilan police contingent headquarters,” said Ayob Khan.
He added that the two MACC officers who were nabbed in Putrajaya were an assistant commissioner and superintendent.
Ayob Khan also said that the entire duration of the operation saw a total of 64 suspects arrested for their alleged involvement in the ‘Nicky Gang’ crime syndicate.
“Investigations are currently being conducted under Section 130V to Section 130ZB of the Penal Code Chapter VIB of Organised Crime and the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma).
“All those detained under the Act have been remanded for 28 days,” explained Ayob Khan, adding that he hopes the latest arrests can shed light on the whereabouts of Liow.
Liow has been on the run after police initiated the operation codenamed ‘Ops Pelican 3.0’ to nab him last month.
The 33-year-old fugitive businessman is believed to have obtained information about the March 20 operation from police officers and personnel as well as other enforcement agencies on his payroll, including a former deputy public prosecutor.
Liow is wanted for a list of criminal offences, including an online scam operation targeting mainland Chinese nationals.
He is also believed to have ties with a notorious triad leader and head of an international drug-trafficking syndicate, known as the 14K, Wan Kuok Koi @ Broken Tooth Koi.