IGP Tan Sri Fuzi Harun was reported as saying that prison wardens and inmates were being targeted for recruitment by terror groups. ― Bernama picKUALA LUMPUR, Oct 8 ― Malaysian prison wardens and inmates are being targeted for recruitment by terror groups, a Singaporean newspaper suggested today.
The Sunday Times, the weekend edition of the Singapore Straits Times, reported Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Fuzi Harun revealing the information following the arrest of a former inmate, 53, in Tapah, Perak last Friday.
The top policeman indicated that the former inmate was a former Internal Security Act (ISA) detainee who had been incarcerated in Tapah Prison February 2013 after being convicted of terror charges.
“We've known for quite some time that he had been recruiting inmates [there], but we can't disclose when it started. Those who have been radicalised have also been identified,” he was quoted saying.
He was also reported saying police believe the arrested man was trying to incite religious and racial unrest and had planned attacks against Muslim, Christian and Hindu places of worship here.
“We also believe he had been protecting a militant from Tandzim Al-Qaeda Malaysia (TAQM), who is still at large and wanted by the police,” Fuzi was quoted adding.
According to the Singapore paper, seven prison wardens had fallen under the influence of radicalised inmates last year, prompting the Malaysian Home Ministry to begin isolating prisoners held for militant activities to curb the spread of the terror ideology within the prison system.
Fuzi was reported saying another 37-year-old suspect, also arrested last Friday, is believed to have recruited two more Malaysians to join TAQM with the help of the first suspect, the former ISA detainee.
“This is precisely why we need to isolate detainees held for militant activities from regular prisoners,” he was quoted saying.
Police have been carrying out anti-terror operations and hauled eight suspected militants between September 27 and October 6 in three states.
An Albanian man who guest lectures at a public university was arrested October 1 after police intelligence indicated he is linked to members of the Islamic State terror group abroad.