Sunday, May 07, 2006

Express bus passengers turn robbers

Damn, I take Malaysia/Singapore express buses every couple of weeks. This is really distressing. Does this mean I have start packing a magnum when I take the bus?

The article below appeared in the Malaysian newpaper "The Sun" on 05 May 2006.

Express bus passengers turn robbers
by Charles Ramendran

KUALA LUMPUR: Four gunmen, posing as passengers, took a ride on a Singapore-bound express bus from Penang before holding up 17 people and robbing them of their cash and valuables early yesterday.

The gunmen, believed to be Indonesians, held up the driver and co-driver before relieving the other 15 passengers of their money and items totalling RM12,000.

The robbers had boarded the SE Ekspres Sdn Bhdregistered bus at the Sungai Nibong express bus terminal on Penang island at about 10pm on Wednesday. They struck about four hours later after the bus had just left the Rawang R&R area following a brief stop.

The men took up strategic positions on the bus. While one of them stood guard over the driver and the co-driver, his accomplices relieved the passengers, including three women, of cash, handphones, jewellery and other valuables, which they stuffed into a bag.

The robbers warned the passengers to remain calm. No one was injured.

After travelling for about 2km, they ordered the driver to stop. The robbers jumped out of the bus and were seen getting into a waiting car.

The bus driver drove to the Rawang police station where police took down his report and statements from the passengers. They were only able to resume their journey to Singapore at 10am yesterday.

Gombak district police chief ACP Jalil Talib said the getaway car, a Proton Putra reported stolen in Ampang early this year, was found abandoned at Km26 Jalan Templer in Rawang.

Police have mounted a hunt for the robbers and urged those with information on their whereabouts to contact the district CID at 03-6138 5222.

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