KUALA LUMPUR: Snatch thieves and other criminals, who choose to pick
their victims at shopping centres during festive seasons, will go on a
spree if shoppers are careless with their money and their goods, the
Malaysian Crime Prevention Foundation (MCPF) warned.
MCPF chairman Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said: “Most crimes that
occurred were not premeditated. But they happen because the victims gave
the opportunity for the criminals to act.”
He said criminal acts, such as snatch thefts, were apt to occur just
before festive holidays when shoppers carry a lot of cash to buy items for
Najib, who is Defence Minister, said police statistics
showed that the number of snatch theft cases last year were 14,368, while
in 2000 there were 15, 082 such cases.
In the Federal Territory, he said, some 2,766 cases were reported last
year against 3,922 cases reported in 2000.
Most snatch thefts were committed by local people and not foreigners,
he said when launching the MCPF crime prevention campaign in conjunction
with the Chinese New Year at the Sungai Wang Plaza shopping centre here,
Present was MCPF Penang chapter chairman Datuk Kamal Mohd Hashim, who
is also the regional (northern) director of Star Publications (M) Bhd.
He was among MCPF chapter representatives who
pamphlets from Najib.
The foundation and Kuala Lumpur police will distribute about 35,000
anti-crime handouts, in the form of posters and pamphlets, to the public
and 50,000 more of these materials will be sent to homes of residents
MCPF vice-chairman Datuk Lee Lam Thye said the anti-crime campaign,
with emphasis on preventing snatch thefts, would continue to be held in
future, to remind the public of their civic responsibilities to help
City deputy chief police officer Senior Asst Comm I Datuk Dell Akbar
Khan said the police would place extra officers during the festive period
at public places such as shopping complexes.