Lahad Datu kidnap victims still alive – police

KOTA KINABALU: Police have reason to believe that the two West Malaysians, abducted by five armed men at a bird’s nest house inside an oil palm plantation in Timbun Mata at Kampung Manakayang, off Lahad Datu district on November 14, are still alive.

“Both men are still alive and the police are 100 percent certain of it,” said State Police Commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib when asked to comment on the abduction of the two cousins by five armed men last November.

“We are doing our best to bring them back home safely to their family,” he said at a press conference at the state police headquarters in Kepayan here yesterday.

Although police have yet to receive any ransom demand for the release of the two cousins, identified by their surname, Tung, police believed they know the whereabouts of the men and are also working closely with their counterparts from a neighboring country for assistance.

Police have also mobilized their forces, which include the marine police, air police unit, General Operation Force as well as getting assistance from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency and the Navy.

The abductors went to the farm house in an outboard boat and made their way to the premises, about two kilometers from the sea between 3.30pm and 4.30pm on November 14.

They robbed the 33-year-old plantation manager and his 25-year-old assistant of the plantation of their belongings before ordering them to the boat and escaping into the open waters.

It is said that the victims had earlier pleaded to be released but the suspects only freed the workers.

The workers then ran to the plantation office and told the owner that his son and nephew had been kidnapped by the armed men.

The owner then lodged a police report around 4.45pm on the same day at Kampung Cenderawasih, about 50km from the plantation.

The case is being investigated under Section 365 of the Penal Code for kidnapping or abducting with intent to wrongfully confine a person.

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