Wednesday, August 12

Circling helicopter just a routine exercise — CID chief

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KUCHING: The presence of a police helicopter circling the city sky on Friday night was part of a routine crime prevention exercise and had nothing to do with rumours being spread through Facebook.

When contacted over the matter yesterday, state CID chief Dato Zulkifli Hassan said the crime prevention exercise, which included roadblocks at multiple parts of the city, was also conducted in view of the upcoming Hari Raya celebration and also several important events to be held here in the coming weeks.

“Kuching folk should not get too excited or unduly worried at the presence of the police helicopter in the sky as it is just a routine check against crime. In fact, we conducted a similar exercise earlier this year,” he said.

On postings made by local Facebook users that the presence of the chopper was to track down prisoners who escaped from an Indonesian prison in Medan, Sumatra last week, Zulkifli assured that there was no truth in the matter whatsoever and advised city folk not to panic.

“If one were to really think about it, the Indonesian prisoners who escaped would have to swim across the sea from Sumatra just to get here. It’s not logical at all,” he said, adding that people should not blindly believe everything they read on the Internet.

Apart from the ‘escaped Indonesian prisoners’ rumour, other local Facebook users posted slightly modified claims that the presence of the helicopter and roadblocks was due to 300 Indonesian detainees escaping from local jails.