Sunday July 13, 2008 Star
KLANG: Immigration Department deputy director-general Yusof Abu Bakar and a close relative have been remanded for five days by a magistrate’s court here to assist the ACA in a graft probe.
Yusof, 54 and the relative were brought before the court at about 11.20am.
The two were handcuffed as four Anti-Corruption Agency officers led them into the court.
Magistrate Zarifah Zainal Abidin ordered that the remand start from 11.45am yesterday.
Yusof is the second senior Immigration Department official detained since the arrest of its director-general Datuk Wahid Md Don by the ACA on Thursday.
Wahid, who was remanded on Friday, was arrested together with six others.
Besides Yusof and his relative, it is learnt that another 11 people also were arrested.
It is also learnt that Yusof was picked up yesterday morning while the others from Friday night.
The others are suspected middlemen and runners while the relative is said to be the main middleman for a syndicate and agents.
It is learnt that ACA officers seized more than RM150,000 from the latest 13 suspects.
They are said to have links to a syndicate that had been collecting exorbitant fees for the renewal of social visit passes, especially for people from China.
ACA director-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Said Hamdan said: “It (the allegations) connects right to the top. It involves members of the public, foreigners, government officers and syndicates.”
He said that more arrests were expected.
ACA sources said the agency had been monitoring the syndicate’s activities for more than five months following the sudden increase in the number of women from China detained during raids.
The women would flout their social visit passes and worked in entertainment centres either as guest relation officers or were involved in vice activities.
The sources said syndicate members collected between RM1,500 and RM6,000 to extend each social visit pass for between one and six months.
The normal rate charged by the Government for extensions per month is only about RM100.
The sources said senior officers get between RM500 and RM700 per passport for a single extension while top officers get between RM10,000 and RM20,000 per agent per month.
A retired army major has this to say:
Major (Rtd) Teoh