China diver arrested for allegedly posing nude in Sabah

Semporna police were alerted following a tip-off from a Semporna resident on Tuesday (Oct 20) who saw four photographs uploaded on Facebook of the tourists in the nude.
Semporna police were alerted following a tip-off from a Semporna resident on Tuesday (Oct 20) who saw four photographs uploaded on Facebook of the tourists in the nude.PHOTO: THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

KOTA KINABALU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Police have arrested a Sabah-based dive master from China after identifying him as one of the suspects who posed nude in pictures that went viral in social media recently. 

The 33-year-old man was nabbed at a rented room in Semporna town at about 11.15pm Wednesday (Oct 21). 

Sabah CID chief Datuk Salehhudin Abdul Rahman said the suspect would be remanded until Oct 25 to facilitate investigations pertaining to the incident where several men and women were seen nude and topless in photographs, which were uploaded in a Facebook user’s page. 

“Anyone found acting obscenely in a public area is punishable under the law and can be jailed up to three months, or fined, or both if found guilty,” he said. 

The suspect has a Professional Association of Diving Instructor licence and is a frequent organiser of tours and diving activities around Semporna for China tourists. 

The latest incident involving tourists stripping naked is believed to have taken place in Sibuan, one of the many islands off Semporna. 

One of the photos showed three topless women photographed from behind, with another showing seven nude men photographed from behind, and a woman in a bra and shorts posing towards the camera. 

Semporna police chief Supt Peter Umbuas had said that it was not exactly known when the stripping happened, saying it could have been two weeks ago or even back in 2013. 

On May 31, photographs of European tourists stripping naked at the peak of Mt Kinabalu caused a stir, with locals saying it was a show of disrespect to the natives and Sabah culture. 

Four of the identified nudists, a British, Dutchman and two Canadians, were charged in court and sentenced to three days in jail and then ordered to leave Sabah.