Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Catch a Thief and win a Motorbike

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's main ruling party has volunteered to help curb street crime, offering new motorbikes to gangs of illegal street racers (mat rempits) if they spend their time catching thieves instead.

Illegal racing and bag-snatch robberies are twin scourges of Malaysian streets. Bag-snatchers are usually men who grab women's handbags as they race past them on motorcycles, often dragging them head-first into the pavement and sometimes killing them.

"Once they catch at least 30 snatch thieves, we will reward them with a motorcycle each as an incentive," Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim, head of the party's junior wing, told the Star newspaper.

The United Malays National Organization party has tried to reach out to illegal racers, usually jobless or lowly paid youths, to persuade them to give up racing and join the party.

"Instead of wasting their time, they might as well help police combat crime," Abdul Azeez said.

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