Twelve Sri Lankan nationals and four Afghans were arrested at Pantai Sungai Tengah, Bandar Penawar, while they were attempting to sneak out of Malaysia yesterday.
Marine Operations Force deputy commander (Region Two), Supt. N. Kalai Chelvan said they were arrested at 1am following a tip-off.
The foreigners, aged between 17 and 40, admitted that they were going to Indonesia and then to Australia by boat, he said in a statement today.
He said the immigrants had been handed over to the Bandar Penawar Police Station for further action.
Kalai Chelvan said a total of 985 illegal immigrants had been arrested for either entering or attempting to sneak out of the country. Thirty-four skippers were also arrested during the same period, he added. (LP)