Fatimah praises Aussie, Malaysian police for prosecution of paedophile

KUCHING: The Minister of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah has praised the relevant authorities for putting 40-year-old paedophile Alladin Lanim behind bars.

“I am grateful that finally, he was tracked down, prosecuted and punished for his hideous crime,” she said on WhatsApp on Sunday (Sept 5).

Fatimah also congratulated the excellent work of the Australian police and the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) on the case.

According to a local online news portal, Alladin molested children in a plantation and on the verandah of a house in Lundu. He also induced them to view pornographic materials by letting them play a game on his phone.

As reported in The Sydney Morning Herald, Lanim shared child abuse materials on the internet since 2007 and was linked to more than 1,000 images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of young children.

He operated for 14 years without detection and became one of global law enforcement’s most wanted child offenders, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

“In Aug 2020, though, experts at the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation’s victim identification unit made a breakthrough,” it reported.

It said the AFP-led operation consist members of Queensland Police’s Argus taskforce for child victim identification, and they found a social media image of the man they suspected they were looking for.

“After sending the picture to Malaysia, AFP officers in Kuala Lumpur and the Royal Malaysia Police and United States Homeland Security investigators raced to put a name to it, knowing all the while that more children could be in danger of abuse the longer the search went on,” it reported.

The report said a team at Australian Federal Police, Queensland Police and the Australian Transactions Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), the Australian government’s financial intelligence agency, was able to put together another key piece in the puzzle in concert with their counterparts this year.

The Australian investigators then in July assisted in tracking Alladin to a state Covid-19 quarantine facility, where he was serving a mandatory period in isolation after returning to Sarawak following a trip to Malaya. After completing his quarantine on July 5, the local authorities were waiting for him.

Six weeks later, in the Kuching Court, he pleaded guilty to 18 charges and was sentenced to 48 years in prison and 15 strokes of the cane.

It was reported that Australian investigators, who provided a package of material to prosecutors in Kuching, identified 34 victims he had abused but believe there may have been more.

Australia and Malaysia have a deep history in co-operation on security and policing, with the AFP office in Kuala Lumpur the agency’s oldest and approaching its 50th anniversary, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

“It’s an association that has paid off in unmasking a predator and Assistant Commissioner Siti Kamsiah Hassan of PDRM’s Sexual, Women and Child Investigation Division is thankful for the help. She said Malaysian police would continue to protect minors ‘in spite of Covid-19’,” the report said.