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A total of 12 Malaysians, including two women, aged between 33 and 50, have been detained by anti-graft officers in a sting operation, for acting as middlemen and agents to help renew temporary foreign workers permits (PLKS).
According to a report by The Star, The suspects were rounded up, in Selangor, Johor, Penang and Perak, during simultaneous raids at about 11am on Thursday (Apr 27).
Sources close to The Star said the arrests were conducted by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) through information obtained from MyEG Services Bhd, where elements of corruption in the online renewal process of PLKS were found using the company’s portal.
“By right, only employers are allowed to collect the permits upon submission of the applications online. But it was found that these agents would offer money to certain officials tasked with handling the permits and collecting them without the presence of employers,” said a source.
The suspects had given out between RM50 and RM700 per application as an incentive to secure the release of the permits without having to go through the stipulated procedures. Foreign workers, who are not yet employed, would then be able to look for jobs using the PLKS.
MACC director of investigations Datuk Simi Abdul Ghani confirmed the arrests. He added that MACC would apply for a remand order so that an investigation could be carried out under the MACC Act 2009.
“We view this matter seriously as their actions could threaten the national security and cause unnecessary problems,” said Simi. The suspects are expected to be brought to the courts in their respective states to be remanded today.