63,000 foreigners barred from entering Malaysia – Immigration DG

The Immigration Department (JIM) has blocked the entry of about 63,000 foreigners into the country over several offences under the Immigration Act 1959/1963 including those with criminal records and have been blacklisted since Jan 1 this year. (NSTP Archive)

KUALA LUMPUR: The Immigration Department (JIM) has blocked the entry of about 63,000 foreigners into the country over several offences under the Immigration Act 1959/1963 including those with criminal records and have been blacklisted since Jan 1 this year.

Its director-general Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali said there is no guarantee that foreigners who have received eVisa and eEntri online could immediately enter the country as screening and checks would be carried out at all 137 land, sea and air entry points.

“I would like to clarify that the eVisas issued by the Immigration (Department) and vendors involved in the administering eVisas and eEntris that it is not an absolute guarantee for them (foreigners) to enter the country.

“We (JIM) will check, if they have been found blacklisted or have criminal records at the point of entry, we will issue a “Not To Land ‘(NTL) notice to stop them from entering the country,” he told Bernama after an interview on Bernama Radio today.

He said those charged with NTL would be redirected back to their country of origin upon arrival at a Malaysian entry point.

He added that JIM is also working with the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) to share intelligence information involving foreigners who have criminal records, or are involved in terrorist activities that could threaten national security.

“Through the system we have now, we can look at the record of those who have been blacklisted and for other reasons such as abusing social visit passes to enter Malaysia to work,” he said.

On Nov 15, police raised alarm over weaknesses in the eVisa system which resulted in people who had been blacklisted and had criminal records, to enter the country.

Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Noor Rashid Ibrahim said the system weakness was a major threat to the country and it would take action following the exposure in a local newspaper a day earlier.

Meanwhile, Mustafar said from January until now, 45,000 illegal immigrants had been arrested for various offences under the Immigration Act.