PUTRAJAYA - Secret societies are ganging up on the police following the nationwide crackdown on hardcore criminals, according to Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar.
He said the success of Ops Cantas Khas had made the gangs desperate, leading them to group together to fight the law.
Khalid told reporters that a number of top cops had received death threats from the underworld.
"This clearly shows Ops Cantas Khas, which began on Aug 17, is successful and effective in fighting crime," he said after attending a crime prevention forum moderated by Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi here yesterday. "(In their desperation) criminals are threatening the police."
Khalid said that his men were not intimidated by the threats and vowed to act against those who made them.
After more than a month, 11,873 people had been detained nationwide and 401 weapons were seized, including firearms, he said.
Earlier at the forum, Khalid expressed fear that Malaysia would turn into Mexico or Colombia should gangs group up and become dominant, and if there were no preventive detention laws in the country.
In Mexico and Columbia, he said, drug cartels and other organised crime groups were powerful because the law enforcement institution there was weak.
Khalid said that preventive detention, under proposed amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act 1953, was needed to curb organised crime.
He said gangs had become bold and blatant in committing crime after the abolition of the Internal Security Act and Emergency Ordinance in 2011.
"So, I hope the people understand that we need preventive detention laws to live in peace and harmony," he said.
Under the proposed amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act, a person may be held for two years without charge or trial.
The detention may be extended for another two years in the interest of public order, security or crime prevention.