Cowed gang members go into hiding

Cowed gang members go into hiding
This picture taken in the early hours of August 21, 2013 shows Malaysian policemen guarding a roadblock during an operation called "Op Cantas Khas" in Kuala Lumpur.

PETALING JAYA - After a spate of high profile shootings and violent crimes, gang members appear to be lying low, cowed probably by the ongoing crackdown.

A former gang member and Emergency Ordinance (EO) detainee told The Star that the general feeling in the underworld was to "wait out until this blows over".

He said gangs, which mostly rely on lucrative returns from drugs distribution, had slowed down or halted operations in the Klang Valley after the launch of Ops Cantas Khas.

"I asked some of my friends who are still in the gangs to join me for a drink on Merdeka Day, but they said they had to remain hidden for a while," he said.

"They fear being stopped at roadblocks and getting locked up. They don't want to confront the police because they know they can't win."

The ex-gang member said it was about time the authorities took a stand against secret societies.

"They have been thriving under the noses of the inactive police force for nearly two decades," said the man, who was detained under the EO for six years.

He said the ongoing crackdown on gangs should not be a knee-jerk reaction.

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