Immigration detained 14,361 illegal immigrants

PUTRAJAYA: The Immigration Department (JIM) has conducted 2,528 operations from Jan 1 to Feb 23 with the arrest of 14,361 illegal immigrants, said its Director General Datuk Ruslin Jusoh.

He said for the same period, 139 employers were arrested for various offenses under the Immigration Act 1959/63 including the offense of employing and protecting illegal immigrants.

Although we (JIM) will implement the Migrant Repatriation Program (Out Pass) starting Friday (March 1), JIM will still carry out operations to crack down on foreigners without valid documents.

“It should be noted that the target of JIM is not only illegal immigrants, but also employers. There are some employers who want to bypass the process of hiring foreign workers because they do not want to pay the levy. That is wrong because we have laws that must be obeyed,” he told meida.

Migrant Repatriation Program (Out Pass), which will be implemented from March 1 to December 31, is a program that allows illegal immigrants to return to their country of origin voluntarily and meet the conditions set by JIM.

It includes having valid travel documents and a return flight ticket.
This year, he said JIM will focus fully on the 220 ‘hotspot’ locations throughout Malaysia that are identified as the focus of foreigners and then carry out integrated operations with other enforcement agencies.

Among the measures taken by the department to stem the influx of foreigners include making inspections of premises that employ foreign workers, wholesale market areas and educational institutions that take international students.

In addition, JIM also tightened controls and inspections at the entrance of the country while foreign visitors entering Malaysia are also required to have a return ticket to their country of origin.

Regarding the data of active foreign workers in Malaysia until Feb 15, Ruslin said there were a total of 2,123,049 foreign workers in Malaysia with the highest number from Bangladesh at 786,795, followed by Indonesia (496,083), Nepal (367,498), Myanmar (163,324) and India (119,706).

In addition to the country in question, Malaysia also allows the entry of foreign workers from other countries including Cambodia, Vietnam, Pakistan and Turkmenistan.

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