Malaysia has its own laws and systems in determining whether a group is extremist or terrorist, including in the case of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
Bukit Aman’s Special Branch Counter-Terrorism Division (E8) principal assistant director Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay (above) said although the US had removed the LTTE from its list of terrorist groups, it could not be the basis for Malaysia to do the same.
“We are a sovereign country and have our own laws, everything that we do has its own standard operating procedure (SOP).
“We can’t use the US list as the basis as there are many other countries that still list the LTTE as a terror group,” he told reporters when met at the 11th International Conference on Financial Crime and Terrorism Financing 2019 (IFCTF 2019) in Kuala Lumpur today.
Commenting on terrorism financing investigations, Ayob Khan said 22 investigation papers had been opened with 19 individuals brought to court since 2016 to date.
He explained that any money transaction, even a small amount, would still be considered a crime if it was channelled to finance terrorist activities.
“Some people make a transaction of RM100 up to a significant amount regularly and this can be traced with the help of the bank.
“Most of them use Western Union to send money to families or third-parties as funds to Syria and the southern Philippines,” he said.
Meanwhile, on the fate of militant Yazid Sufaat who is currently detained at the Simpang Renggam Prison, Ayob Khan said it would be decided by the Prevention of Terrorism Board that is scheduled to meet in the middle of this month.
“We gave our inputs and (now) are waiting for the decision by the board,” he said.
Yazid, 55, who is directly linked to the Sept 11, 2001 attacks in the US may be released from detention this month and that release may raise concerns among anti-terrorism officials in the country.
The US-trained biochemist has been detained at the Simpang Renggam Prison near Kluang for the past two years under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (Pota) that allows the suspect to be detained without trial for up to two years.
Asked on the whereabouts of Malaysians in Syria, he said to date, the authorities have identified 65, but only are able to make contact with 40 of them. - Bernama