TAWAU: Kidnappers of three fishermen have demanded a ransom of two million Philippine pesos (RM180,000) for their release.
The ransom demand was made in a telephone call to the fishermen’s employer, Karim Musappa, 30, on Monday.
The three fishermen, all Filipinos who are permanent residents here, were kidnapped by seven armed men from their trawler in the waters off Pulau Pom-Pom, Semporna last Saturday.
Karim said one of the three, Masurin, in his 50s, telephoned him at 7.55am on Hari Raya Haji to say the kidnappers wanted two million pesos.
He said he lodged a police report after receiving the phone call.
The kidnappers also contacted the wife of one of the victims recently to demand a ransom. “The victim’s wife told me the kidnappers have given her until Sept 19 to pay the ransom.”
Sabah Police Commissioner Abdul Rashid Harun said state police received a phone call regarding the kidnapping of the fishermen.
However, he declined to reveal details of the telephone conversation.
Abdul Rashid said the victims were believed to be safe and the police would continue to investigate the case.
The trio, identified as Loloi Alpin, 30; Sami, in his 30s; and Masurin were kidnapped by seven men armed with firearms, while fishing together with 13 other crew members in the waters about 10.40pm on Sept 10.