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No news on Nini today (Sat 26 Jan), not even a mention on Buletin 1.30 on TV3. Aside from police quashing the SMS rumours here yesterday, she hardly made mention anywhere. (Actually there were a few small articles buried in the back pages of the newspapers here, here and here.) As attention turns to more pressing issues such as price of consumer goods, global feul rise and the upcoming general elections, there will hardly be any newsworthy space for this little girl. Will she be found soon? I and the police have no answers. Only her captors must decide when this will happen. Much as I want her return, my heart prays that they will spare her from harm. No, not another Nurin!
In the meantime, it seems the media, especially Harian Metro, have begun highlighting missing children the world forgot. In this recent report here, here, here, here and here they focus on another little girl Maslina Maulat Saidin, this time with a somewhat happy ending. This pretty little teenager was fortunate that her father managed to track down the love-smitten 18-year-old Indonesian contract worker who had talen her. I am told by a former maid that in her kampung it was normal for 12-13 year old village lasses to marry. I was agahst when she told me but remembered that my mom herself was married off to my 21-year-old dad at age 14-years. Only these days when women marry later in life, the thought of a 13-year-old running off with another man is just unthinkable.
In such a case as Maslina’s, an Amber Alert would not have been triggered as it would have been suspected that Maslina was a ‘runaway’. In addition, considering she was taken across international waters to Indonesia, it would have been difficult for the Malaysian police to look for her without the help of their Indonesian counterparts. Indeed she is one lucky girl to still be alive and I pray she will take better care not to be duped again. In the case of Denise Amer Lee in the US, who was reported missing on 17 Jan 2008 and found killed two days later here, the public is questioning here if an Amber Alert would have saved her as police hotly defend their actions here. ‘Who’ makes the decision ‘when’ and in ‘which’ cases is an Amber Alert to be triggered? The same questions will be asked in the implementation of the NURIN Alert and the police must make take control of making this all important decision. Not all fathers will be as fortunate as En Saidin and triggering the NURIN could be a matter of life or death! In the meantime, we keep looking for Sharlinie!
Read the New Straits Times report:
Maslina Maulat Siadin, 13, who went missing last month returned safely home on Tuesday. After a month of searching, her father Siadin Rashid, 44, finally found her on Pulau Lamaraya, a remote island southeast of Sulawesi. Maslina, the youngest in the family of six, is believed to have been abducted by an Indonesian contract worker from her house in Kampung Pondok Upeh. “I was so happy to finally be able to see and hold her after all this time. “I was shocked when Maslina told me that she was given a potion to drink to make her forget about her family before she was taken to Indonesia,” he said at his home in Kampung Pondok Upeh, Balik Pulau yesterday. Maslina, who was allegedly forced to marry the 18-year-old contract worker while in Sulawesi, was reported to have gone missing on Dec 16. Siadin said the family found out recently that the man, identified as La Ila, had taken his daughter to Indonesia. Siadin and his brother, Jalil, an Immigration officer, then left for Jakarta on Jan 17 to track down Maslina. From Jakarta, they took an eight-hour flight to Kendari, the nearest airport to Pulau Lamaraya. “On arrival, we took a three-hour taxi ride to the interior and were told by the localauthority that Maslina and a man had been detained at the police station. “We went straight to the station where a tearful Maslina rushed out and hugged me.” Siadin said he and Jalil had to do some hard bargaining with the Indonesian immigration and police before they could bring her home on Tuesday. “Maslina had entered Indonesia illegally at Tanjong Pinang, Riau, and then took a one-week boat trip to reach Pulau Lamaraya. “She survived on bananas and boiled corn during her journey.” Siadin expressed his thanks to the Malaysian Embassy and the Immigration Department for their help in bringing his daughter home as she had entered Indonesia without travel documents. Meanwhile, Maslina’s mother, Salmiah Hussin, was thankful that her youngest daughter was finally home. “I am so happy. I plan to throw a thanksgiving gathering to celebrate her return.” Maslina declined to be interviewed by reporters.
Much as I wish I could fill you in with details of the Citizens for Nurin Alert (C4NA) meeting
this yesterday evening, I was there only for the closing. Sigh!!! I missed out on much of the discussions while busy battling traffic and grappling with a lifelong handicap in figuring out directions. Aside from being the butt of jokes about having geopositioning systems installed in my car from Chairman Kamal Affandi Hashim, I gather it was a great meeting. Mostly because I got to meet two regular commentors on my blog, the lovely Mary Kate and Steph. Indeed I was so pleased to finally meet up with them that I wish we had had more time to chat. My loss unfortunately. Maybe one day we can meet up for tea and a chat ladies. It’s not often I go out for socializing but to be able to meet the two of you again would be fabulous. Tune in for updates in Jasni’s blog.
As usual today Munira posted a real zinger of a thought provoking comment:
“Which is why now a lot of the investigations work in the West have started to focus on the victims (Victimology) to try understand why that particular victim was chosen for that particular incident in violent crime cases.”
Now, this called for a little Wiki surfing and I uncovered this explanation on Victimology:
“Victimology is the scientific study of victimization, including the relationships between victims and offenders, the interactions between victims and the criminal justice system — that is, the police and courts, and corrections officials — and the connections between victims and other societal groups and institutions, such as the media, businesses, and social movements.”
Like Munira, I wonder if our men in blue in the Royal Malaysian Police are equipped with these sorts of expertise these days? They should learn from a retired police detective in Connecticut who now “stalks the mind of a predator ” by going around the state speaking to groups of parents and other adults on a more realistic approach to understand the heart and mind of a potential predator. This report here says he teaches parents that instead of trying to shift the problem to the kids, parents should inform themselves on how a sex predator operates in order to recognize the dangers, and intervene and save their child. Having been with the FBI and at the Behavioral Sciences unit that deals with sex offenders, he says:
“…there are two types of sexual offenders against kids.
First there is the pedophile – a term the media has muddled, by using it to describe every sex offender, but which in reality applies only to the person who habitually targets pre-pubescent boys. He – and is always a “He” Kenary said, has high self esteem, is an extrovert, is often well educated, respected in community, and may be married. He has also a Peter Pan syndrome, acting often like a child, and has child lures like games, videos, and skateboards to attract his victims. He offers kids presents, “understanding,” and “respect,” and he is always allowed to approach his victim by its own parents, who never imagine what he is really after. “He is Mr. Nice Guy,” Kenary stressed, “but in his case ‘Nice’ is not a character trait, it’s a tool.”
While statistics show that pedophiles are very few, he said, pedophiles commit an inordinate number of crimes each, most of them attacking more than 100 kids before they are caught. And they are well organized, with international networks connecting them together, and even organizations promoting their “rights,” like NAMBLA – the North American Man Boy Love Association.
Recently the Internet has been a great attraction to these people, because they can easily find children whose parents are not aware of what is happening, Kenary said. They approach them by offering them the sense that they are nearer their interests, that they understand them better. “And you know what is the first present they send the kids?” Kenary asked. “A web camera.”
There have also been questions if pedophiles are attracted in professions that give them power over children – teachers, boy scout leaders, priests – Kenary pointed out, and while there are no specific studies on this, it should be something parents should always be aware of. “Is every teacher, Boy Scout leaders and priest a pedophile?” Kenary asked. “No. But a parent must keep in mind that one could be.”
And then there is the second group of sexual offenders against children, the regressed offender, the sexual predator that attacks children opportunistically, Kenary related. Generally under-adequate, from a dysfunctional home, inhibited, with low self esteem, no sense of self or identity, with little education and possibly intellectual deficits, this offender will try anything sexual, and mostly offends against girls. The crime is usually committed on impulse, inside the family, when the other partner is away, and often involve alcohol. And he always tries to deny the facts, sometimes blaming the attack on his victim. “Talk with your children, open lines of communication about sexual safety, talk to them about these people,” Kenary pleaded with his audience.
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