Two men and a woman were arrested and a speedboat was seized on Monday in another people-smuggling case, Judiciary Police (PJ) spokesman Lai Man Vai said during a special press conference on Tuesday.
The suspects are a 32-year-old mainlander surnamed Liu, the skipper of the boat who told the police that he’s unemployed. The second male suspect is a 38-year-old mainlander who illegally entered the city, while the 46-year-old female suspect from the mainland is an overstayer who intended to leave Macau illegally.
According to Lai, the police recently received a tip-off from the Zhuhai Public Security Bureau about a people-smuggling gang. Judiciary Police and Macau Customs Service officers discovered that Liu was taking a male passenger on a speedboat early on Monday to the Coloane waterfront in Hác Sá Long Chao Kok, while a woman was on the shore waiting for Liu to take her back to the mainland. The police arrested the trio on the spot.
Lai said that Liu is the skipper of a boat used by a people-smuggling gang in the mainland. The other male suspect told the police that he had paid 25,000 yuan (28,200 patacas) to be smuggled into the city to gamble in local casinos. He said he hired the boat so that he could avoid the COVID-19 quarantine measures implemented by both Zhuhai and Macau. The female suspect told the police that she overstayed in Macau and said that she had paid 15,000 yuan to the gang to be smuggled out of Macau.
According to Lai, the police suspect that the gang has been operating for about a month. The police suspect that Liu is a low-ranking member of the gang, Lai said, adding that the investigation into the case is continuing.
Liu was transferred to the Public Prosecution Office (MP) yesterday for questioning and possible arraignment on charges of membership of a criminal organisation and aiding and abetting illegal immigration, according to Lai, who did not elaborate on the situation of the two other suspects.
It’s an offence to enter or leave Macau illegally.