To my family and friends,
This happened to me today. Please take care.
I was visiting a specialist at Sg. Besi, located at a shophouse near South City Plaza, Sg. Besi today with my 8 year old daughter. If, like me, you are unfamiliar with this part of KL, its is adjacent to The Mines, off the Besraya Highway. This was at 1 pm, broad daylight, with lots of people about.
After the consultation, my daughter and I got into my car, a Toyota Estima. I started the engine and was about to back out of the streetside parking space when a bunch of men (in this case, of Indian ethnic background) who were fussing around another car parked two lots away turned around and started to gesture to me to stop. They flashed police IDs and indicated that I should stop. I assumed that something untoward had happened to the car, or its occupants (a white MPV) which had its bonnet up and doors opened, and around 10 guys buzzing around it. I felt uneasy right away and (whilst with the windows up & door locked) gestured to them that I would speak to them a liitle further down the road. (away from so many guys).
A white van marked with the familiar blue “Polis DiRaja Malaysia” insignia on the doors and bonnet drove up alongside and the two men disembarked and showed me their IDs once again. They said that my car road tax serial number was different from that registered to my vehicle licence plate and that I should allow them to check the chassis number of the vehicle by lifting the bonnet. I immediate countered that by asking them ” Eh, what exactly are you guys doing huh?” They replied, ” We are the police, cannot read ah? We are doing our jobs.” whilst gesturing towards their IDs. They also showed me their mobile hand-held “checking unit” which looked all “official-website-form” on it and showed me a number and pointed out that this was different from that shown on my road tax sticker.
Since the sticker faces outwards I had no way of checking. I just contered that with ” Eh, if the number is different, its your problem, not mine. Whats wrong with your computer system huh?” They got very irritated. In the meantime, while this exchange was happening, I was trying to call my husband on his moblie to verify the road tax renewal (cos, y’know, us wimmin don’t like to get our hands dirty with this kinda thing)…. Rang, couldn’t get through immediately, so to buy a little more time, I told the plainclothes cops that I didnt’t think that they were cops (altho I wasn’t sure) and that I wanted the check to be done in the police station. They said, sure, to follow them to the station nearby.
They started to drive their police van and indicated for me to follow them. By this time I got through to my husband and he just said – ” car jackers, don’t follow them, this is bulllshit” I was already panicking because there was like quite a few of the guys by the car, and I wasn’t sure if there were’t any of the group tailing me…whether I was a car sandwich or no.
So I gave my husband the van’s licence plate and drove around looking for the nearest access to the highway (tol plaza) The police van followed me and I just kept smiling at them and gesturing for them to follow me. (gila huh?) Then I stopped at the tol lane (The Sg. Besi Tol) realised there is no tol office just the drivethrough counter. (almost went to the smart tag lane out of habit… just see how bodoh we can be) I just stopped there and told the girl at the counter my dilemma…for about 10 minutes. The van went through the toll and drove off. I waited to be sure no other vehicle was waiting around, gave the girl the licence plate and asked her to call the cops, although I had doubts about follow-through. Even at that time, I wasn’t 100% sure if they were genuine thugs or cops… because, sadly, as we alll know… even the real thing looks pretty iffy in this part of the world huh?
Anyway, my husband had called back to say that they had checked the plate with Bukit Aman and they boys in blue do not have a vehicle with that registration. I just kept drivin’ and drivin’ and drivin’ cos really, I had no idea where I was… until I reached Sunway Pyramid. For the life of me I really don’t know how I got there (Since South KL is terra incognita), and mainly because I was so busy checking my rear view mirror to see if any car was tailing me. My 8 year old daughter was getting a little nervous in the back there.
When we got out of the car as I had decided to have lunch at Sunway Pyramid (I had to calm down right?) she turned to me and said… ” I think they wanted the car AND me” Oh dear god… I hadn’t even thought about THAT.
So please, do watch out. The van plate (which is probably fake…) was WMK 3944. Doesn’t matter, who and how and when, the ploys, I’m sure, keep evolving, just be your most SCEPTICAL self at all times when “OUT THERE”.
Take care y’all.
Karen Lim Siebel