A 33-year-old Singaporean man who was reported missing while hiking in a forest reserve in Kota Tinggi has been found safe with minor injuries, the Malaysian police said on Sunday.
The man was identified on Saturday night as Jason Ren Jie.
In a statement on Sunday afternoon, Kota Tinggi police chief Hussin Zamora said his division received a call from a member of the public around 2.20pm, informing them that the hiker was at the 52km mark on the Kota Tinggi-Mersing highway.
“Based on this information, a response team was mobilised to the location and reported that the victim was found safe and only suffered minor injuries,” said Mr Hussin.
“The victim was brought to Kota Tinggi Hospital for medical treatment and will be released to the Forestry Department for further action because he did not obtain a permit to enter the forest reserve.”
Johor Forestry Department director Salim Aman said the Singaporean was found around 3.15pm on Sunday by rescuers, according to a report in China Press, a Chinese-language newspaper in Malaysia.
On Saturday the police had said that he had been reported missing at 3.26pm by a local man. A team from the Batu Ampat police station was then deployed to the scene to help with the search and rescue operation,” he said in a statement on Sunday.
Personnel of the Fire and Rescue Department and the Johor Forestry Department also participated in the operation.
Mr Salim had been quoted as saying that the Johor Forestry Department would take action against those who entered the forest reserve without a permit.
“Those who commit this offence can be fined not exceeding RM10,000 (S$2,958) or jailed for not more than three years or both, upon conviction,” he said.
“We would like to strongly advise those who come to apply for a permit and hire a mountain guide. Those with no experience in the forest are forbidden to go for a hike alone,” he said.
The Singaporean was hiking with his local friend, Mr Teng Jih Bao, 35, The Star had reported.
The Mr Teng was quoted as saying that they started the trek at 11.30am and he then noticed his friend was missing.