A Singaporean woman travelling without her passport in Johor Bahru was stopped by police and asked to produce cash in return for them to not pursue any matters.
Angered by the experience, the woman turned her misfortune into a cautionary tale on the social media app.
Tailed by police
According to the woman, it started when she and her friend were leaving the mall Sunway Big Box at 6:30pm.
They were driving in a car that had a Malaysian car plate.
When they exited the mall, she recounted having a “weird feeling”, as if someone was “stalking” them.
“But at that point we didn’t think much of it and brushed it off,” she said.
She should’ve listened to her gut instincts.
As they neared their first traffic light, travelling at a “conservative speed”, the woman spied a police car parked along the street.
This same vehicle silently tailed the pair from then on.
After a couple of minutes, the police car’s sirens sounded, signalling for the driver to pull over and step out of the car.
Police needs pocket money
The woman stayed in the car while her friend stepped out to greet the cops, and they were asked to produce their passports.
She noted that one out of the five cops stood by her side of the car, “guarding” her.
Unfortunately, she didn’t have her passport on her, which led to the police allegedly demanding that she pay them “kopi money” — slang for a bribe.
“I said I don’t have much cash in hand because [my friend’s] family house was just around the corner… But the officer kept insisting on [me] paying him the price of RM10,000??????”
As stated on the Immigration Department of Malaysia’s online portal, a foreigner in Malaysia who fails to produce a genuine passport, travel document, or entry permit upon request can be interpreted as an illegal entry.
This could result in a fine of up to RM10,000 (S$2,926), or imprisonment for up to five years, or both.
Those found guilty will also be liable to no more than six strokes of the whip.
The police then warned the woman that failure to fork out the cash would lead to her being banned from entering the country for five years.
In response to this, she told the officers that she could go to a nearby bank or ATM to withdraw the money.
“The officer got scared and demanded for us to pay him all of the cash that we had as tuition fees. He’s teaching us how to get about Malaysia law? That’s what he claimed. LOL,” she wrote, incredulous.
She ended up paying them about RM500 (S$146) with the money she had on her.
The woman ended off her post with a final word of advice: “In Malaysia, everyone (driver or passengers) should bring your passport/NRIC at all times.”
Previously, a police officer who allegedly asked a Singaporean couple for RM500 was reportedly taken to task.
The Johor police chief said the identity of the traffic police officer involved was confirmed and he was transferred out and that the incident will be taken seriously.
An investigation was launched.
The police chief added that the police officer was transferred to a position where he would not have contact with the public.
Once investigations were completed, the force was obliged to take disciplinary action against the officer involved and he could have been dismissed as a result.
Another incident in Kuala Lumpur in April 2022 saw a Singaporean driver give police officer money and complain about it publicly subsequently.
Top images via Getty