Johor cops: Man arrested for begging at Pasir Gudang surau found with RM2,500 in cash
PASIR GUDANG, April 28 — Police believe they may have exposed a begging gang, run by undocumented migrants who target mosque congregants, following the arrest of an alleged accomplice found with RM2,500 cash on his person.
The suspect, believed to be in his 60s and originally from Central Asia, was nabbed by a team from the Pasir Gudang police station’s crime prevention unit at 1.20pm at a surau in Taman Bukit Dahlia here today.
Acting Seri Alam police chief Deputy Superintendent Mohd Roslan Mohd Tahir said the arrest was made following public complaints of begging activities at the surau.
He said checks on the suspect revealed that he was carrying copies of his travel documents as well as RM2,500 in cash.
“Investigators believe that the cash, which was found inside a plastic bag, were proceeds from the suspect’s begging activities.
“The suspect was arrested for carrying out begging activities in public and failing to show valid identification documents,” said Mohd Roslan in a statement here tonight.
The case is being investigated under Section 27(c) of the Minor Offences Act 1955 for begging, which carries a fine of up to RM100 or imprisonment.
Police are also investigating the suspect under Section 6(1)(c) of the Immigration Act 1959/63 for entering the country and staying without valid travel documents, which carries a maximum fine of RM10,000 or imprisonment of not more than five years, or both.
Mohd Roslan said the suspect is currently in police custody and investigators will seek a remand order under Section 117 of the Criminal Procedure Code at the Johor Baru Magistrate’s Court tomorrow.
He advised the public to report any begging activities to the authorities who can then take the necessary action.
On April 5, Johor police conducted a state-wide operation to nab undocumented migrants found begging in the city and town areas, following a sudden surge in such activities.
Johor police chief Datuk Kamarul Zaman Mamat said the authorities are taking a serious stance against undocumented migrants begging on the streets and in public areas, especially urban areas.
He was reported as saying that the state police would not tolerate panhandling and begging activities that could negatively impact the image of the city and safety of road users.