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M'SIAN SHOOTINGS: 30 shooting cases in M'sia since April, 24 killed
Publication Date : 09-08-2013
A convicted drug trafficker was shot dead in Penang, while another man was shot and wounded in Perak - continuing a run of violent crimes as Malaysians began the Aidilfitri holiday.
K. Veerappan, 37, who had three convictions for trafficking and possession, was gunned down at point-blank range as he stopped his BMW5 at a traffic crossing in Anson Road in George Town, Penang, Thursday morning.
He was hit by at least 10 shots, including several ones in his neck, Assistant Police Commissioner Gan Kong Meng said in a New Straits Times report.
Based on bullet casings found, police believe at least 14 shots were fired through the car windscreen by assailants in the 11:30am attack.
In a separate incident, also in Penang, more than 20 shots were fired at a luxury bungalow in Utama Road, waking the family sleeping inside.
The bungalow's owner, who is abroad, had recently lodged a police report after receiving six live bullets from unknown persons demanding money.
In Chemor, in Perak's capital Ipoh, a 29-year-old man was hospitalised on Wednesday night with four gunshot wounds after two gunmen opened fire on him inside his sedan.
Ipoh police chief Sum Chang Keong said the victim was driving in the Klebang Putra housing area, 15 minutes from the centre of Ipoh town, at about 11:15pm when two men on a motorcycle rode up near the vehicle and fired six shots at the victim.
Veerappan's was the 13th hit-style shooting in two weeks, and he was the sixth to die.
Since April 12, there have been 30 incidents of violent crime, with 24 killed.
That's despite strict gun ownership laws in Malaysia. It can take up to two years to get a gun permit and gun owners have to go through annual renewals.
However, crime watchdogs say it is not difficult for those with links to the criminal world to hire guns and hitmen.
In yet another shooting incident, a taxi driver, who is a part-time debt collector, was shot in the thigh with a pistol which he claimed he found in the back seat of his taxi early yesterday.
He is recovering in hospital.
The 27-year-old man told police he had dropped off a passenger in front of a restaurant when he found a backpack with a pistol inside.
"He was trying to open the magazine of the pistol when it suddenly fired. The bullet went through the palm of his left hand and hit his left thigh," said city criminal investigation department chief Ku Chin Wah.
Police have blamed the rise in crimes on 2011's repeal of the Emergency Ordinance (EO), which allowed for detention without trial and dated back to the 1969 race riots.
Some 2,600 EO detainees were released last year after the law was repealed.
The government is expected to table new laws next month to arrest the rising rate of violent crime.
Civil rights groups have urged the authorities not to reinstate preventive laws that allowed for detention without trial.