KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 16– The government will use existing laws, including the declaration of persona non grata, to curb the entry of undocumented migrants into the country, said Senior Minister (Security) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

He said the intrusion by these undocumented migrants or illegal immigrants through rat lanes was considered a criminal offence and they could be prosecuted.

“Undocumented migrants detained under Ops Benteng will be deported after the completion of the legal process.

“After they have undergone prison terms, for example five years’ imprisonment, the migrants will be placed in detention depots for the process of documentation and biometric system before being deported to their country of origin for good,” he told a press conference on Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) development yesterday.

Persona Non Grata is a person who cannot be accepted by a country forever after being found guilty of committing an offence (crime) which cannot be forgiven (serious) while he is in a country.

Ismail Sabri said the biometric system would help the authorities to identify those who had committed offences, thus preventing them from re-entering the country.

He said that as of Monday, 14 illegal immigrants were detained through Ops Benteng.

On Sunday (Dec 13), Immigration Department director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said foreigners who were involved in criminal activities and convicted would be declared persona non grata.

The decision would apply to all foreigners who committed offences under the Immigration Act (1959) regardless of the type of pass they have, he said. 

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador concurred Khairul Dzaimee, saying police would refer foreign criminals convicted in court, especially the heads of fraud and vice syndicates, to the Immigration to be declared persona non grata.


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