Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Manpower Ministry has foiled an attempt to smuggle 20 illegal migrant workers to Singapore and Malaysia, in an inspection to a registered workers agent in East Jakarta.

The impromptu inspection on late Monday (Sept 24) in PT Mangga Dua Mahkota was held in coordination with the National Board for Placement and Protection of the Indonesian Migrant Workers (BNP2TKI), the Minister for Women Empowerment and Children Protection, and the police, the ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

"We found that the agency`s shelter is unqualified and below the required standard. We also detained 36 migrant workers that would be sent to Singapore and Malaysia," an official of the Manpower Ministry Yuli Adiratna said.

Twenty workers were found to have no legal documents. The remaining 16 workers already have their legal documents, four of them have been granted working permits.

The workers are recruited from various regions including Sulawesi, Lampung, Banten, West Java, East Java and Medan in North Sumatra.

"The illegal migrant workers would be returned to their respective villages," Yuli said.

The ministry, she said, would further investigate the case as the workers agent is a registered manpower supplier firm.

The ministry`s Director of Migrant Workers Protection and Placement Soes Hindharno said, the ministry would sanctioned against workers agent that violate regulation.

While on indication of criminal act would be handled by the police, he said.

Reporting by Aubrey Kandelila Fanani
Editing by Sri Haryati, Andi Abdussalam

Reporter: antara
Editor: Heru Purwanto
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