Penang police have intensified a crackdown on two of the biggest secret societies in the state after learning that the groups have merged to conduct various criminal activities.
State police chief Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said today that the notorious Siu Sam Ong (Hokkien for “three little emperors”) and the gang known as “24” have struck a partnership and stepped up extortions and other criminal acts.
“They have united very effectively to conduct various activities,” Rahim said.
“According to our intelligence, Siu Sam Ong and 24 are causing disturbances around Penang. We will act sternly on them.
“I want to warn these groups: do not try to create problems in the state.”
Abdul Rahim said since the Ops Cantas was launched nationwide in August last year, police in Penang have arrested a total of 6,334 people from the 30,112 on whom checks were conducted.
"We screened people of various races and were not targeting any specific criminal groups," he said.
Of those arrested, 438 belonged to secret societies and 58 were investigated under the Prevention of Crimes Act 1959.
A total of 18 firearms and 920 bullets were seized, together with 115 vehicles, he added.
Penang police, who have recorded some 8,000 secret societies existing in the state, have also intensified their surveillance on major gangs such as Wah Kee, Pneh, Ang Kim Leng, Double 7, 08 and 04, many of which are known to collect protection money and conduct drugs trafficking, among other crimes, Rahim said.
He told reporters this after officiating the state police monthly gathering and oath-taking ceremony at the headquarters in George Town. Also present was state deputy police chief Datuk A. Thaiveegan.
On the national “Ops Godam ATM” to counter hackings of automated teller machines (ATMs), Rahim said the state police were conducting special patrols to monitor the situation in the state.
Police were keeping an eye on ATMs in Al-Rajhi Bank and Affin Bank branches although there have been no cases recorded yet.
He said some of the banks had also beefed up their security measures since the hackings were detected in other parts of the country.
Rahim urged the public to lodge a report if they had information or encountered any suspicious activities at banks with ATMs. – October 3, 2014.