KOTA KINABALU - Police believe there could be local involvement in the murder-cum-kidnapping of Taiwanese couple.
Federal Internal Security and Public Order director Datuk Seri Salleh Mat Rashid said an integrated operation would be carried out soon to arrest those believed assisting the group of gunmen.
"We are looking into this and in cases like this there will always be local involvement," he told reporters at a press conference at the State police headquarters in Kepayan here, today.
Salleh urged all resort operators to cooperate with the security forces in efforts to safeguard the safety of tourists.
Also present were State police commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib and Eastern Sabah Security Command Defend director Datuk Abdul Halim Jalal.
Last Friday, gunmen broke into a Pom Pom Island Resort chalet and shot Li Min Hsu, 57, before abducting his partner An Wei Chang, 58.
They group fled in a boat towards the direction of Mataking Island in the 1am incident.
It is learnt that Mataking is close to the southern Philippines and the nearest island in the Philippines is Pulau Malamanuk, where police believed the group could have been heading and hiding.
Meanwhile, Hamza dismissed that the Taiwanese couple was husband and wife as reported in the media.
He also dismissed report that Chang could be the targeted victim as she was a friend of the First Lady.
"We are working close with Taiwanese officials and they are in fact here with us in Semporna," he said, adding no contact or ransom demand was made.