Bandar Seri Begawan - The Brunei Government collected a whopping $427,500 from Immigration fines (compounds) in 2012 due to Immigration raids, as revealed by the Law Enforcement Division at the Department of Immigration and National Registration.
Each year, the Law Enforcement Division creates a different code name for its raid operations: 'Ops Tangkas', meaning agile and skilful, was utilised for last year's activities. For 2013, the codename 'Ops Sergah' will be used as it means 'Friendly but firm approach'.
According to statistics in 2012, a total of 98 'Ops Tangkas' were conducted in addition to a total of 312 normal raids and 48 joint-operations held alongside other law enforcement divisions from other government agencies.
Immigration related ops last year targeted 611 areas, according to the revealed figures.
According to the division, a total of 326 complaints were received while 1,688 investigations were carried out with 85 successful convictions made in court Thirty of the successful convictions involved caning penalties.
A total of $58,500 was collected from court penalties while a total of 1,059 people were compounded from Immigration related offences resulting in the collection. of $427,500 in fines. The division emphasised its relentless efforts to uphold the law and its continuous efforts to improve its raiding activities including joint-agency operations.
The 'Ops Sergah 3' was jointly conducted with Religious Law Enforcement Division and the Royal Customs and Excise Department on January 20 targeting rented houses and rooms in four suspected places or locations to inspect whether foreign nationals were staying in the country with valid Immigration passes and that couples are legally married. They also inspected the place for any probable Custom case, according to the information acquired.
The raid resulted in the apprehension of two foreign nationals for failing to show any valid travel documentation. A total of 11 special passes were also issued whereas
Customs Officers detained three foreign nationals after finding packets of cigarettes without the 'Health Warning Label' and an arrow and bow, that is considered a dangerous arsenal. Law Enforcement Officers, also revealed that a local attempted to runaway but was successfully caught and found in possession of utensils used for the consumption of syabu. He was also found to have prior convictions.
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) was called and another two locals were found in a rented room. After urine tests came in positive for drug misuse, the duo were brought in for further investigation by the NCB. Among the aims of the operations were to unite law agencies for the shared purpose of upholding the law, as highlighted by the Law Enforcement Division. Such joint operations are vital in preventing double-information and conduct raids together especially those related to Immigration offences and enforcing the Trade and Human Trafficking Order 2004.
Cooperation from members of the public is also vital as they provide the division with tip-offs or reports on Immigration-related offences. The public can call 8753888 and 8734888 to report such offences.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin