Naked tourists arrested: Mount Kinabalu Tourists Arrested

Published: June 11, 2015

Naked tourists arrested: Mount Kinabalu Tourists Arrested, One of the foreign tourists associated with a group of 10 wanted by police for stripping and urinating on top of Mount Kinabalu on May 30 was briefly detained and released on Monday.

Sabah CID chief Sr Asst Comm II Datuk Sallehuddin Abdul Rahman confirmed the detention of a 38-year old European who was planning to leave for the Philippines after arriving from Tawau at about 4.20pm Monday.

He said that the man was not part of the 10 wanted foreigners against whom a report was lodged by Sabah Parks officials.

The case is being investigated under Section 290 of the Penal Code for public nuisance, which carries a fine of up to RM400.

Sallehuddin said the man was part of a larger group of 27 who scaled the mountain on May 30.

In the group were 10 others who posed naked and started urinating on the mountain, photographs of which went viral on social media.

This angered local Kadazandusun elders who said such antics insulted them as they considered the mountain sacred ground.

Some have even asked that those responsible be charged in a Native Court.

Malaysian authorities have detained a group of tourists for allegedly stripping naked to pose for pictures on the country’s highest peak, Mount Kinabalu, an act some Malaysians have said angered the spirits of the mountain and caused an earthquake.

“We are still searching for the other six tourists, and we will catch them,” said Jalaluddin Abdul Rahman, the police commissioner for the Malaysian State of Sabah, who added that those detained might be charged for public nuisance.

Police in the eastern state of Sabah on Tuesday arrested British woman Eleanor Hawkins, 23, state news agency Bernama reported.

Acting police chief Keong Ho Eng said Ms Hawkins was held at the airport in the town of Tawau on Tuesday afternoon, as she was about to leave for Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital.

Ms Hawkins’ father Tim said the incident was something “young people do on holidays.”

“I don’t know why she did it, but when you’re young these things happen.

“I’m not dismissing it as completely trivial. But it’s just something many of us have done in a mad drunken moment, that young people do on holidays every year, and have got away with. They were 4000 feet up a mountain with no one else around.”

Ms Hawkins has appeared in court with Dutch tourist Dylan Snel, and Canadian siblings Lindsey and Danielle Petersen, the Guardian has reported.

The group of tourists stripped to take pictures at the peak of Mount Kinabalu on May 30, infuriating many who regarded the act as disrespectful. The pictures were widely circulated on Internet websites and social media.

News reports said those involved in the incident had been barred from leaving Sabah, to allow police to investigate. This week, some reports said two Canadians in the group were stopped from leaving the country.

On Tuesday, the Canadian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur told Reuters it was aware of the media reports. A spokesman said it was in touch with Sabah authorities and consular assistance was being provided.

At least 16 climbers died after last Friday’s earthquake of magnitude 6.0 struck the area, with another two missing. Among the dead were six Malaysians, seven Singaporeans, and one each from China, Japan and the Philippines.

As the photographs of the foreigners emerged, some Malaysians on social media, and even government officials, began linking the stripping on the mountain to the earthquake.

“It is a sacred mountain and you cannot take it lightly,” Joseph Pairin Kitingan, deputy chief minister of the state of Sabah, was quoted as saying.


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